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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.

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