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The San Luis Basin encompasses the largest structural and hydrologic basin of the Rio Grande rift. On this field trip, we will examine the timing of transition of the San Luis Basin from hydrologically closed, aggrading subbasins to a continuous fluvial system that eroded the basin, formed the Rio Grande gorge, and ultimately, integrated the Rio Grande from Colorado to the Gulf of Mexico. Waning Pleistocene neotectonic activity and onset of major glacial episodes, in particular Marine Isotope Stages 11–2 (~420–14 ka), induced basin fill, spillover, and erosion of the southern San Luis Basin. The combined use of new...

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