We thank Glasby (2007) for his comments regarding the sedimentary history of the southwest Pacific Basin. Our definition of this region of extremely low deposition, which we termed a bare zone, was based largely on our two (not one, as noted by Glasby) north-south transects of the region, and on information gathered from the associated survey and coring sites (Rea et al., 2006, Fig. 2). Glasby has pointed out additional information about the bare zone, including information regarding very low sedimentation rates and the nature and implications of the manganese nodule fields that cover much of that part of the deep sea floor.

It should be noted that the 1980 cruise of the R/V Sonne reported by Schmitz et al. (1986) and mentioned by Glasby recovered cores only from the periphery of the bare zone. Finally, in his Comment, Glasby redefined the bare zone to be truly bare—not with our conservative estimate of less than 7 m of sediment—and then noted that such a completely bare area was unlikely to exist. We agree that there is almost certainly a minimal amount of sediment within the bare zone, and concur with Glasby's call for more marine geology–geophysics cruises to the region to better understand the sediment distribution and the relationships between sediment accumulation and manganese nodule distribution.

An example of such a cruise was conducted aboard the R/V Revelle in December and January of 2006–2007. That cruise, also a site survey cruise for the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program, included a west-to-east trackline at ~28°S, and a west-southwest–trending trackline that crossed the very southeastern corner of the bare zone as shown on our map (Rea et al., 2006, Fig. 2). Seismic profiles from those tracks show very thin sediment at 28°S, and ~20 m of sediment at the southeastern extreme of the bare zone. A core from the 28° south transect on 70 Ma crust recovered a total of 5 m of brown clay over basalt (S. D'Hondt, 2007, personal commun.), demonstrating the very thin sediment cover there.

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