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Abstract

1–40 follows Tijeras Canyon through the Precambrian coreand overlying Pennsylvanian-Lower Permian sequence of the south end of the Sandia Mountains, beginning immediately eastof the Albuquerque city limits. Geologic features of this area are well displayed in road cuts and exposures near 1–40 and are summarized in this text for an 8.6-mi (13.8-km) interval of 1–40, beginning at the eastbound Carnuel (locally pronounced “carnway”) exit (Fig. 1). This section of 1–40 was constructed with wide shoulders, and there are numerous places where, with reasonable care, it is safe to stop along the highway to examine road cuts. Site descriptions, below, progress from west to east(from Precambrian to Permian), but the traveler should be aware that most of the road cuts referred to are on the north side of the interstate highway, along the west-bound lane. To examine them closely, if proceeding eastward, it is necessary to carefully cross the interstate or to drive to a nearby exit and backtrack. Short hikes off the highway, particularly in Precambrian terranes, can be most informative, and old U.S. 66, which parallels 1–40 between Carnuel and Tijeras, provides the safest access for a “hands-on” look at the Precambrian geology. Recent geologic maps of the area considered here were published by Kelley and Northrop (1975); Myers and McKay (1976) and Connolly (1982).

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