The South Mountains of central Arizona are one of the geologically simplest metamorphic core complexes of the North American Cordillera. An early Miocene age of mylonitization is indicated by crosscutting relationships between mylonitic fabric and a composite pluton dated at 22–25 Ma by Rb-Sr, U-Th-Pb, and K-Ar techniques. The kinematic agreement and close temporal association of mylonitization and detachment faulting support models in which the two processes are related to an evolving crustal shear zone that accommodated mid-Tertiary continental extension.

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