Geologists interested in mixed carbonate and siliciclastic systems and/or low permeability slope and basinal reservoirs in the Permian Basin.
To gain an understanding of the deposits, architectural elements, and sedimentological processes associated with a middle Permian mixed carbonate and siliciclastic slope system modified by antecedent topography of a drowned carbonate platform margin.
Outcrops of the middle Permian (late Leonardian – early Guadalupian) Cutoff Formation in the Guadalupe Mountains National Park provide an excellent view of a mixed carbonate and siliciclastic succession that accumulated on the slope of the northwest Delaware Basin, largely coeval with the deposition of San Andres carbonates on the shelf. Organic-rich mudstone hemipelagites and fine-grained sandstone turbidites are thought to represent “Avalon Shale” and “Avalon Sandstone” reservoirs in the subsurface respectively. These deposits accumulated during periods of carbonate-starvation along the slope which alternated with downslope shedding of shelf and open-marine detritus.
Submarine erosion and slope failure associated with antecedent topography of a drowned carbonate margin (Victorio Peak/Bone Spring Formation) was critical in controlling depositional facies and architecture of the Cutoff Formation in the lower slope/basinal environment. The field trip will include stops at Shumard Canyon and Bone Canyon to observe the scale and internal architecture of submarine channels incising the bedrock of the relict platform. Other field-trip stops will include Stratotype Canyon, Black Stove Canyon, and Rest Area Gully to observe basin-restricted carbonate and siliclcastic sediment gravity flow deposits, carbonate channel-levee complexes, failure scours associated with the downslope transport of olistostromal blocks, and thick (>50 m) accumulations of recumbently folded deposits associated with these failure events. Observations made on the outcrop will be discussed in the context of limited biostratigraphic zonation and a sequence-by-sequence link to the San Andres shelf system in order to illustrate that alloycyclic mechanisms exerted an important temporal control on patterns of sediment dispersal and accumulation in the slope and basinal environment.
8:00 PM – Brief introduction and presentation of logistics and agenda for field trip at Wyndham Hotel in El Paso.
7:30 AM – Depart from El Paso International Airport heading east on highway 62-180 to Guadalupe Mountains National Park entrance via Williams Ranch Road
10:00 AM – Arrive at Patterson Hills overview
11:00 AM – Depart Patterson Hills overview and head to Williams Ranch House
12:00 PM – Arrive at Williams Ranch House for lunch
1:00 PM – Shumard Canyon
4:30 PM – Entire party is back at vehicles, return to Carlsbad, NM
7:30 AM – Depart from hotel to park entrance at Williams Ranch Road via highway 62-180
9:30 AM – Stops 1 and 2, Bone Canyon and Stratotype Canyon
12:30 PM – Lunch back at vehicles
1:30 PM – Stop 3, Black Stove Canyon
4:30 PM – Entire Party is back at vehicles, depart from outcrop, return to Carlsbad, NM
7:30 AM – Depart from hotel, head to rest area overview below Salt Flat Bench via highway 62-180, and fuel up on the way if needed
9:30 AM – Begin hike to rest area gully
12:00 PM – Entire party is back at vehicles, return to El Paso International Airport for flight home
Applicable Credits: 20 PDH, 20 CEU
Limit: 20 people
Includes: Ground transportation, hotel with complimentary breakfast (Thursday, Friday, Saturday), lunch (Thursday, Friday, Saturday), entry fees, refreshments and guidebook
Notes: The hikes on this trip are extremely difficult. Please ensure that you are capable of rigorous physical activity prior to registering for this trip. Rugged, closed-toed shoes and long-rugged pants are required. Transportation to the starting point is not included in the cost of this trip. Temperatures can range from 30-50 degrees Fahrenheit during this time period. Please bring warm clothing.
There are a limited number of discounted registrations available for students on a first-come, first-served basis. If a discounted space is still available, it will show up during the online registration process. If discounted spots are no longer available, you may register at the full fee; if we are able to add additional discounted spots we will refund the difference at that time.
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