Skip to Main Content
Book Chapter

Late Cenozoic uplift and shortening in the central California Coast Ranges and development of the San Joaquin Basin foreland

Donald D. Miller
Donald D. Miller
Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112, USA
Search for other works by this author on:
Stephen A. Graham
Stephen A. Graham
Department of Geological Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, USA
Search for other works by this author on:
Publication history
06 March 201805 October 2018


The Coast Ranges Province of central California provides an important record for the timing of convergence of the North American–Pacific plate boundary along the San Andreas fault system. The sedimentary record, in conjunction with seismic interpretation and backstripping methods, constrains the age of onset of Diablo and Temblor Range uplift and concurrent subsidence of the San Joaquin Basin along the San Andreas fault to 6.2–5.4 Ma. This age of convergence and uplift of the Coast Ranges is compatible with plate-tectonic circuit models, where clockwise rotation of Pacific–North American plate motion produced plate convergence at this latitude. However, changes in plate motion do not explain a widespread structural and sedimentary event at ca. 3.5 Ma that is evident in the western San Joaquin Basin and other basins in California. Possible drivers for the 3.5 Ma event include eustatic sea-level change, geomorphic forcing, epeirogeny related to mantle lithosphere removal, and flexural tilt of the Sierra Nevada–Great Valley microplate.

You do not currently have access to this article.

Figures & Tables


GSA Special Papers

Tectonics, Sedimentary Basins, and Provenance: A Celebration of the Career of William R. Dickinson

Geological Society of America
ISBN electronic:




Citing Books via

Close Modal
This Feature Is Available To Subscribers Only

Sign In or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal