Changing tectonic regimes in the southern Salinian block : extension, strike-slip faulting, compression and rotation in the Cuyama Valley, California Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/3t945t508

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  • During the Cenozoic, tectonics in the Cuyama basin of the southeastern Salinian block changed from extension to strike-slip faulting to compression and rotation. During the Oligocene-early Miocene, the Cuyama basin was adjacent to the southern Mojave region and part of that extensional tectonic regime. Many present-day reverse faults have an extensional history. At [approximately] 23 Ma, strike-slip faulting began, and the Cuyama basin was part of a zone of distributed shear between the North American and Pacific plates. The Russell fault, which is the oldest documented right-lateral fault in the region, began movement at [approximately] 23 Ma which continued until 4 Ma. Tracing its 29 km of slip south of the Big Pine fault is problematic. It may connect with the Blue Rock fault below the Cuyama Badlands, and then correlate with the Clemens Well-Fenner-San Francisquito fault segments, another early strand of the San Andreas fault system to the south. An associated left-lateral fault is proposed to underlie the southeast Caliente Range. The Cox normal fault, which was active during deposition of the Saltos Shale member of the Monterey Formation, is another structure associated with the early right-lateral shear. Compressional tectonics have occurred more recently. The Caliente Range is moving south on the Whiterock and Morales thrusts; the Sierra Madre is moving north on the South Cuyama and Ozena faults. A blind thrust that may be a southern extension of the Morales thrust is postulated to underlie the folds of the Cuyama Badlands. The Plio-Pleistocene Morales Formation was deposited during the onset of folding and thrust faulting. Magnetostratigraphy was used on the Morales Formation to date uplift of the Caliente Range, which began between 3.0 and 2.5 Ma. Recent uplift of the Frazier Mountain-Mt. Pinos highlands began between 2.6 and 0.78 Ma. Paleomagnetism also revealed 23° of post-Morales Formation clockwise rotation. The rotation may be due to the movement of material west of the San Andreas fault around the Big Bend of the San Andreas fault.
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