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Book Chapter

Channel-fill Sandstones at San Clemente State Beach, California, USA

By
Mark chapin
Mark chapin
1
Shell Exploration and Production, Denver, Colorado, USA
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Fred Keller
Fred Keller
2
Shell International Exploration and Production, Houston, Texas, USA
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Published:
January 01, 2008

Abstract

Beach cliffs at San Clemente State Beach (Figure 1) provide excellent exposures of sandy turbidite channels of the Miocene Capistrano Formation. These outcrops have been a popular field trip destination since Walker (1975) described the general character of this channel system. The architecture and reservoir continuity of this section are dominated by deep scour surfaces, which step laterally from south to north and are filled mainly with sandy turbidite beds (Figure 2). The southern margin of the channel complex has incised silty slope mudstones of the Monterey Formation. No lateral overbank deposits are observed. The channel complex is interpreted to occupy a gorge eroded into a steep slope on the eastern edge of an active, strike-slip basin.

A bed-scale architecture section has been constructed for the San Clemente turbidite-channel complex and provides insight into depositional processes and reservoir performance issues. The architecture was traced onto a large-scale photo montage at the outcrop. Twelve measured sections and numerous local observations calibrate the lithology of the interpretation. The top of the channel system is covered by younger, gravelly terrace deposits, and the basal part of most of the channels is below the ground level. However, the lateral relationships of channel margins, channel drapes, and sand-dominated infill are spectacularly displayed.

The sandstone is very fine- to coarse-grained, with pebbles abundant at the north end. Most sandstone beds are classical turbidites with Bouma sequences, but at the north end, pebble-dominated beds become more common. Thick beds with granules and pebbles display coarse-tail grading, implying high-density turbidite deposition.

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Contents

AAPG Studies in Geology

Atlas of Deep-Water Outcrops

Tor H. Nilsen
Tor H. Nilsen
Desceased
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Roger D. Shew
Roger D. Shew
University of North Carolina
Wilmington, North Carolina
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Gary S. Steffens
Gary S. Steffens
Shell International E&P
Houston, Texas
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Joseph R. J. Studlick
Joseph R. J. Studlick
Maersk Oil America Inc.
Houston, Texas
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American Association of Petroleum Geologists
Volume
56
ISBN electronic:
9781629810331
Publication date:
January 01, 2008

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