This detailed geologic map and supplemental digital data set1 examine and demonstrate the complex deformational history and reactivation relationships of the Panamint Range (California, USA), from active transtension of the Walker Lane belt, Miocene extension of the Basin and Range, to multiple Mesozoic events related to subduction, and Neoproterozoic extension. This collection of map data focuses on the geometry, kinematics, and relative timing of deformation to understand the deformation history and effects of structural reactivation. A minor portion of this geologic mapping data was presented in the analysis and figures of Andrew and Walker (2009).
The Neogene extension and subsequent dextral transtension deformation has created a complex network of faults via partial reactivation of Mesozoic and Neoproterozoic structures. Structural data show oblique normal slip overprinting earlier normal slip along the western range flank fault of the western Panamint Range. Jurassic and Cretaceous deformation is localized along the western range on the Goldbug fault. The hanging wall of this fault preserves migmatitic fabrics and intense deformation due to Jurassic contraction. The Goldbug fault places Paleoproterozoic to Mesoproterozoic rocks over Neoproterozoic rocks. The Jurassic contraction has top-to-the-northeast relative transport and the more discrete Cretaceous thrust faulting has top-to-the-east transport. A set of Late Cretaceous plutonic rocks and mylonitic gneisses derived from them, occur along the Goldbug fault and demonstrate the reactivated nature of this fault in the Late Cretaceous. New data for the Butte Valley fault show that this fault cuts Late Jurassic plutonic rocks and has normal slip. The Butte Valley fault ends northward at the linked sinistral slip Warm Spring Canyon fault, which was previously interpreted to be an intrusive contact. A previously unrecognized rim syncline structure occurs along the boundary of the Late Jurassic Manly Peak quartz monzonite. Neoproterozoic deformation is difficult to discern due to the overprinting deformations. Numerous Neoproterozoic deformation-related mass wasting deposits can be seen within this formation, including a set of conspicuous allochthonous deposits and clasts of older Beck Spring Dolomite that appear to be frozen in the process of breaking away from intact, normal thickness beds in the Surprise–Happy Canyons divide.
This detailed geologic mapping and collection of structural data for the rocks in the central Panamint Range were created using digital in-the-field geographic information systems software running on a field-hardened laptop computer combined with an earlier set of field data that were digitized into the digital georeferenced database. This map is a simplification of detailed geologic mapping data collected at 1:2000–1:6000 scales and reduced to 1:20000 scale. Structural data include kinematic and relative timing of deformation information.
Grants to J.D. Walker at the University of Kansas from EarthScope and the Geothermal Program Office of the U.S. Navy supported much of the fieldwork during the author's Ph.D. dissertation work at the University of Kansas.