Geology of the northern part of the Southeast Three Sisters quadrangle, Oregon Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/b2774103w

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  • The northern part of the Southeast Three Sisters quadrangle straddles the crest of the central High Cascades of Oregon. The area is covered by Pleistocene and Holocene volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks that were extruded from a number of composite cones, shield volcanoes, and cinder cones. The principal eruptive centers include Sphinx Butte, The Wife, The Husband, and South Sister volcanoes. Sphinx Butte, The Wife, and The Husband are typical High Cascade shield and composite volcanoes whose compositions are limited to basalt and basaltic andesite. South Sister is a complex composite volcano composed of a diverse assemblage of rocks. In contrast with earlier studies, the present investigation finds that South Sister is not a simple accumulation of andesite and dacite lavas; nor does the eruptive sequence display obvious evolutionary trends or late stage divergence to basalt and rhyolite. Rather, the field relations indicate that magmas of diverse composition have been extruded from South Sister vents throughout the lifespan of this volcano. The compositional variation at South Sister is atypical of the Oregon High Cascade platform. This variation, however, represents part of a continued pattern of late Pliocene and Pleistocene magmatic diversity in a local region that includes Middle Sister, South Sister, and Broken Top volcanoes. Regional and local geologic constraints combined with chemical and petrographic criteria indicate that a local subcrustal process probably produced the magmas extruded from South Sister, whereas a regional subcrustal process probably produced the magmas extruded from Sphinx Butte, The Wife, and The Husband. All of the volcanoes in the field area are probably less than 720,000 years old. Sphinx Butte, The Wife, and The Husband are older than South Sister and have been subjected to at least two glaciations. Late Pleistocene glaciers covered all but the upper ridges and summit of South Sister; however, evidence for multiple glaciation is obscure and it is possible that the bulk of South Sister is younger than the second-to-last Pleistocene glaciation. Glaciated andesite lavas at the summit of South Sister are capped by a veneer of basaltic andesite lavas. The basaltic andesite lavas were extruded prior to 6840 yrs. B.P., but are probably of late Pleistocene rather than Holocene age. At some time between 12,000 and 2300 yrs. B.P., basaltic andesite lavas and cinders were extruded from the Le Conte vent at the southwest base of South Sister. The Le Conte lavas may bear only a spatial relation to South Sister. Between 2300 and 1900 yrs. B.P., a series of rhyodacite domes and block flows were extruded from flank vents on South Sister. Future eruptive activity is likely at this volcano.
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  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Patricia Black(patricia.black@oregonstate.edu) on 2013-09-20T19:45:42Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 2 WozniakKarlC1982.pdf: 6508922 bytes, checksum: 115c28ac1c6f01320f1b8209d28ba913 (MD5) Plate 1.jpg: 8627672 bytes, checksum: cdc490dc96d4a8e7f4681e575d4c795c (MD5)
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