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Lower Chinle Group (Upper Triassic:Carnian) stratigraphy in the Zuni Mountains, west-central New Mexico

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Andrew B. Heckert Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Geology (Creator)
Institution
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site: http://www.library.appstate.edu/

Abstract: The lower Chinle Group in the Zuni Mountains consists of (ascending) the mottled strata, Shinarump Formation, Bluewater Creek Formation, and the Blue Mesa Member of the Petrified Forest Formation. A persistent, bench-forming sandstone that crops out extensively in the Bluewater Creek Formation is the McGaffey Member. This section rests disconformably on the Middle Triassic Moenkopi Formation, and is overlain disconformably by the Sonsela Member of the Petrified Forest Formation. The bounding surfaces are the Tr-3 and Tr-4 unconformities, respectively. Differential thinning of the Blue Mesa Member from 45 to 22 m from west to east across the Zuni Mountains probably represents erosional relief generated on the Tr-4 unconformity surface. The Bluewater Creek Formation consists of three primary lithofacies assemblages, which we interpret as representing red-bed floodplain and overbank, low-sinuosity fluvial, and lacustrine depOSits, respectively. Tetrapod biochronology indicates an Adamanian (latest Carnian) age for most lower Chinle Group strata in the Zuni Mountains, including both the Bluewater Creek Formation and the Blue Mesa Member of the Petrified Forest Formation.

Additional Information

Publication
Heckert, A.B., and Lucas, S.G. (2002) Lower Chinle Group (Upper Triassic:Carnian) stratigraphy in the Zuni Mountains, west-central New Mexico. New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science Bulletin 21, p. 51-72. (ISSN 1524-4156) Archived in NC DOCKS with permission of the editor. The version of record is available at: http://econtent.unm.edu/
Language: English
Date: 2002