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Mantle-driven dynamic uplift of the Rocky Mountains and Colorado Plateau and its surface response; toward a unified hypothesis

Karl E. Karlstrom, D. Coblentz, K. Dueker, W. Ouimet, E. Kirby, J. van Wijk, B. Schmandt, S. Kelley, G. Lazear, L. J. Crossey, R. Crow, A. Aslan, A. Darling, R. Aster, J. MacCarthy, S. M. Hansen, J. Stachnik, D. F. Stockli, R. V. Garcia, M. Hoffman, R. McKeon, J. Feldman, M. Heizler, M. S. Donahue, Lang Farmer, Colin Shaw, Eric Leonard, Clem Chase, Alex Nereson and Rex Cole
Mantle-driven dynamic uplift of the Rocky Mountains and Colorado Plateau and its surface response; toward a unified hypothesis
Lithosphere (December 2011) 4 (1): 3-22

Abstract

The correspondence between seismic velocity anomalies in the crust and mantle and differential incision of the continental-scale Colorado River system suggests that significant mantle-to-surface interactions can take place deep within continental interiors. The Colorado Rocky Mountain region exhibits low-seismic-velocity crust and mantle associated with atypically high (and rough) topography, steep normalized river segments, and areas of greatest differential river incision. Thermochronologic and geologic data show that regional exhumation accelerated starting ca. 6-10 Ma, especially in regions underlain by low-velocity mantle. Integration and synthesis of diverse geologic and geophysical data sets support the provocative hypothesis that Neogene mantle convection has driven long-wavelength surface deformation and tilting over the past 10 Ma. Attendant surface uplift on the order of 500-1000 m may account for approximately 25%-50% of the current elevation of the region, with the rest achieved during Laramide and mid-Tertiary uplift episodes. This hypothesis highlights the importance of continued multidisciplinary tests of the nature and magnitude of surface responses to mantle dynamics in intraplate settings.


ISSN: 1941-8264
EISSN: 1947-4253
Serial Title: Lithosphere
Serial Volume: 4
Serial Issue: 1
Title: Mantle-driven dynamic uplift of the Rocky Mountains and Colorado Plateau and its surface response; toward a unified hypothesis
Affiliation: University of New Mexico, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Albuquerque, NM, United States
Affiliation: Colorado Rockies Experiment and Seismic Transects (CREST) Working GroupUnited States
Pages: 3-22
Published: 20111214
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
References: 165
Accession Number: 2012-014418
Categories: Structural geologySolid-earth geophysics
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: Supplemental information/data is available in the online version of this article
Illustration Description: illus. incl. geol. sketch maps
N31°00'00" - N45°00'00", W116°00'00" - W103°00'00"
Secondary Affiliation: Los Alamos National Laboratory, USA, United StatesUniversity of Wyoming, USA, United StatesPennsylvania State University, USA, United StatesUniversity of Houston, USA, United StatesUniversity of Oregon, USA, United StatesNew Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources, USA, United StatesColorado Mesa University, USA, United StatesNew Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, USA, United StatesUniversity of Kansas, USA, United StatesMontana State University, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Update Code: 201208
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