Abstract

The origin of coastal and high-elevation marine gravels on the Hawaiian islands of Lanai and Molokai is controversial, because the vertical tectonics of these islands is poorly constrained. The gravels are either from eustatic highstands or were left by massive tsunamis from offshore giant landslides. In contrast, at Kohala on the island of Hawaii, where continuous subsidence is well established, lithofacies analysis and dating of a fossiliferous marine conglomerate 1.5–61 m above present sea level support a tsunami origin and indicate a runup of >400 m >6 km inland. The conglomerate age, 110 ± 10 ka, suggests a tsunami caused by the ca. 120 ka giant Alika 2 landslide from nearby Mauna Loa volcano.

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