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Friday Field Foto #83: Cross-stratified volcanogenic sands

May 1, 2009

This week’s Friday Field Foto is from Kilbourne Hole in southernmost New Mexico — very close to El Paso, Texas. This was my last field trip as a student back in 2007 — see more photos from that trip here.

Kilbourne Hole is a maar volcano, which (I remember correctly) is an explosive eruption of mostly gas and steam. The volcano-lovers reading this should feel free to comment below correcting me or sharing more.


Cross beds from pyroclastic density currents, Kilbourne Hole maar volcano, New Mexico (© 2009

This feature is a very cool place to visit as a sedimentologist because the ejecta deposits are from pyroclastic density currents. The ‘base surge’ deposits shown above are extensivly cross-stratified. I also like how this outcrop shows the three dimensionality of the cross beds.

Bonus link: It doesn’t surprise me one bit to find that Ron has a Gigapan from Kilbourne Hole — where hasn’t Ron been between the west coast and the Mississippi with his camera?

Happy Friday!


6 Comments leave one →
  1. Mark Sitton permalink
    May 1, 2009 9:44 am

    Those are great bedforms, Brian! I was reading the March ‘The Sedimentary Record’ from SEPM and was happy to see your field trip guide book from the Magallanas Basin in the bookstore, congrats!

  2. May 1, 2009 9:48 am

    I’ve trained you well, young Jedi. I don’t even have to comment for you to reflexively check to see if I’ve GigaPanned the locality. :-)

    There are a few good geological localities that I haven’t GigaPanned yet, but I’ll be working on rectifying that situation this summer.

  3. May 1, 2009 9:50 am

    Mark … thanks … the Mag Basin guidebook is only $20 for student members. Currently, that’s the cheapest way for me to show people those rocks. :)

    Ron … do you have a link to a single map w/ distribution of all your Gigpans?

  4. May 1, 2009 1:39 pm

    You can see them all on a Google Map on my User Profile page on the site:

    Be patient, though – it takes a minute or two to load because I’ve got so many GigaPans on the site.

  5. May 1, 2009 2:15 pm

    Ron … wow, that’s impressive!

  6. May 5, 2009 8:22 am

    I regret not having picked up a few more of the cored lava bombs around Kilbourne Hole, when I was a UTEP grad student. I also regret not having taken a few more photographs there and in parts of the Aden/Afton Basalts (other than my thesis area).

    It does bring back fond memories. Kilbourne Hole is also a good place for rattlesnakes. And rumor had it that someone had seen a Gila Monster there, also.

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