Skip to Main Content
Skip Nav Destination

Chukchi sea continental shelf sedimentation

Joe S. Creager, Ronald J. Echols, Mark L. Holmes and Dean McManus
Chukchi sea continental shelf sedimentation (in International Symposium on Arctic Geology, 2nd)
The American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin (1970) 54 (12): 2475


The topography of the Chukchi Sea continental shelf south of Herald Shoal is and has been dominated since at least Wisconsin time by Hope Valley (which trends northwest through the central part of the area) and by structural and sedimentary spit-like features trending offshore from Point Hope and Cape Prince of Wales. During the Wisconsin time of lowered sea level, Hope Valley was retrenched and most pre-Wisconsin Pleistocene sediments were stripped from the interfluves. The drainage system was considerably more complex than indicated by the present bathymetry. High-frequency (12 kHz) subbottom profiles and gravity and piston core sediments indicate 1-26 cm post-Wisconsin sediment deposited mostly in a large estuarine environment produced as Hope Valley was inundated. The main sources of sediment initially were the Kobuk-Noatak river system and the shores; smaller amounts were derived from lateral river discharge. Approximately 13,000-14,000 years ago, sea level had risen sufficiently to connect the Bering and Chukchi Seas. After the 2 seas were connected, a major source of sediment was introduced from the Yukon through Bering Strait into the central Hope Valley estuary. A period of rapid deposition followed. Deltaic deposits came from both the Noalak-Kobuk and Yukon sources. In addition, significant deposition north of Point Hope and Cape Prince of Wales resulted from the prevailing current established through Bering Strait. Transgressive sands, open-shelf facies, paralic sediments, and residual deposits can be recognized when related to the modern shelf sediment environment. The total post-Wisconsin deposition has buried numerous small Wisconsin stream valleys, displaced Hope Valley northward through ihe building of the Bering Strait "delta," produced thick deposits of current-derived sediment on the downstream lee sides of Point Hope and Cape Prince of Wales, and subdued the more rugged Wisconsin subaerial topography.

ISSN: 0002-7464
Serial Title: The American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin
Serial Volume: 54
Serial Issue: 12
Title: Chukchi sea continental shelf sedimentation
Title: International Symposium on Arctic Geology, 2nd
Pages: 2475
Published: 1970
Text Language: English
Publisher: American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Tulsa, OK, United States
Summary: Y
Accession Number: 1971-005171
Categories: Oceanography
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
N66°00'00" - N71°30'00", W156°00'00" - E177°00'00"
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2019, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 1971
Close Modal

or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal