Abstract

The Hossfeldt anticline in the southwest Montana thrust belt is characterized by a kink geometry and probably overlies a thrust detachment at depth. The mesofabric distribution in the limbs documents that the eastern overturned limb has undergone most of the rotation and internal deformation during folding, leaving the gently dipping western limb virtually undeformed. The anticline exhibits unique mesofabrics in its hinge region that require a pinned anticlinal hinge during its evolution. The half-wavelength of the Hossfeldt anticline-Eustis syncline pair coincides with that predicted from buckling theory, if one considers the massive carbonates of the Paleozoic section as a competent beam. Although the geometry and mesofabric distribution of the Hossfeldt anticline satisfy the geometric requirements of either a fault-propagation fold or a detachment kink fold, the buckling wavelength strongly suggests that its origin was as a kink-buckle fold above a flat detachment rather than as a fault-propagation fold above a thrust ramp.

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