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Geologic units in Gilliam county, Oregon

Tuffaceous sedimentary rocks and tuff (Pliocene and Miocene) (Miocene to Pliocene) at surface, covers 48 % of this area

Semiconsolidated to well-consolidated mostly lacustrine tuffaceous sandstone, siltstone, mudstone, concretionary claystone, conglomerate, pumicite, diatomite, air-fall and water-deposited vitric ash, palagonitic tuff and tuff breccia, and fluvial sandstone and conglomerate. Palagonitic tuff and breccia grade laterally into altered and unaltered basalt flows of unit Tob. In places includes layers of fluvial conglomerate and, in parts of the Deschutes-Umatilla Plateau, extensive deposits of fanglomerate composed mostly of Miocene basalt debris and silt. Also includes thin, welded and nonwelded ash-flow tuffs. Vertebrate and plant fossils indicate rocks of unit are mostly of Clarendonian and Hemphillian (late Miocene and Pliocene) age. Potassium-argon ages on interbedded basalt flows and ash-flow tuffs range from about 4 to 10 Ma. Includes the Drewsey Formation of Shotwell and others (1963); sedimentary parts of the Rattlesnake Formation of Brown and Thayer (1966); an interstratified ash-flow tuff has been radiometrically dated by potassium-argon methods at about 6.6 Ma (see Fiebelkorn and others, 1983); Bully Creek Formation of Kittleman and others (1967); Dalles Formation of Newcomb (1966, 1969); Shutler Formation of Hodge (1932), McKay beds of Hogenson (1964) and Newcomb (1966) (see also Shotwell, 1956); Kern Basin Formation of Corcoran and others (1962); Rome beds of Baldwin (1976); parts of the (now obsolete) Danforth Formation of Piper and others (1939), Idaho Group of Malde and Powers (1962), Thousand Creek Beds of Merriam (1910); the Madras (or Deschutes) Formation, the "Simtustus formation" of Smith (1984), and the Yonna Formation (Newcomb, 1958). In areas west of Cascade crest, includes the Sandy River Mudstone and the Troutdale Formation of Trimble (1963) and the lower Pliocene Helvetia Formation of Schlicker and Deacon (1967)

Wanapum Basalt (middle Miocene) (Middle Miocene) at surface, covers 30 % of this area

Flows of gray to dark-gray, medium-grained, commonly plagioclase porphyritic basalt of Frenchman Springs petrochemical type (Wright and others, 1973). Generally exhibits blocky to platy jointing. Potassium-argon ages mostly about 15 Ma (Lux, 1982; Fiebelkorn and others, 1983)

Lithology: basalt

Saddle Mountains Basalt (upper and middle Miocene) (Middle to Late Miocene) at surface, covers 11 % of this area

Petrographically diverse flows of basalt erupted between about 13.5 and 6 Ma (McKee and others, 1977; Swanson and others, 1979)

Lithology: basalt

Grande Ronde Basalt (middle and lower Miocene) (Early to Middle Miocene) at surface, covers 5 % of this area

Flows of dark-gray to black, aphyric tholeiitic basalt, including both high- and low-Mg chemical types (Swanson and others, 1979). Potassium-argon ages mostly in the range of 15 to 17 Ma (Lux, 1982; Watkins and Baksi, 1974; Fiebelkorn and others, 1983)

Lithology: basalt

John Day Formation of east-central Oregon (lower Miocene, Oligocene, and uppermost Eocene?) (Late Eocene to Early Miocene) at surface, covers 2 % of this area

Open Water (Holocene) at surface, covers 1 % of this area


Lithology: water

Landslide and debris-flow deposits (Holocene and Pleistocene) (Pleistocene to Holocene) at surface, covers 0.6 % of this area

Unstratified mixtures of fragments of adjacent bedrock. Locally includes slope wash and colluvium. Largest slides and debris flows occur where thick sections of basalt and andesite flows overlie clayey tuffaceous rocks. May include some deposits of late Pliocene age

Lithology: landslide

Clastic rocks and andesite flows (lower Oligocene?, Eocene, and Paleocene?) (Paleocene to Early Oligocene) at surface, covers 0.5 % of this area

Mostly andesitic lava flows, domes, breccia, and small intrusive masses and lesser basaltic to rhyolitic rocks; interlayered saprolite, bedded volcaniclastic and epiclastic mudstone, claystone, siltstone, sandstone, conglomerate, and mudflow (lahar) deposits. Mostly consists of Clarno Formation of central Oregon and unnamed rocks of Basin and Range Province in south-central Oregon. Fossil plants and vertebrates in these rocks are Eocene in age. Andesite and basalt lava flows are typically slightly altered; most glass is devitrified and altered to clay minerals, zeolites, and secondary feldspar. Reliable K-Ar ages of rocks from unit range from about 54 Ma to about 37 Ma (Evernden and James, 1964; Fiebelkorn and others, 1983). A number of K-Ar ages on rocks shown on source maps as part of the Clarno Formation are in the range of about 36 to 19 Ma (Fiebelkorn and others, 1983). Although these rocks are lithologically similar to, but generally less altered than, rocks of the Clarno Formation, they are coeval with the John Day Formation. Most of these enigmatic rocks of Oligocene and early Miocene age are included in unit Tas. At base of unit in Blue Mountains Province, locally includes quartzose and feldspathic sandstone, siltstone, and shale largely of granitic or metamorphic provenance; fossil plants in these sedimentary rocks indicate an early Eocene or Paleocene age

Lithology: andesite; basalt; rhyolite

Picture Gorge Basalt (middle and lower Miocene) (Early to Middle Miocene) at surface, covers 0.4 % of this area

Flows of aphyric and plagioclase porphyritic flood basalt. Potassium-argon ages mostly 15.0 to 16.4 Ma (Watkins and Baksi, 1974; Fiebelkorn and others, 1983)

Lithology: basalt

Alluvial deposits (Holocene) (Holocene) at surface, covers 0.3 % of this area

Sand, gravel, and silt forming flood plains and filling channels of present streams. In places includes talus and slope wash. Locally includes soils containing abundant organic material, and thin peat beds

Lithology: sand; gravel; silt; peat

Lacustrine and fluvial sedimentary rocks (Pleistocene) (Pleistocene) at surface, covers 0.2 % of this area

Unconsolidated to semiconsolidated lacustrine clay, silt, sand, and gravel; in places includes mudflow and fluvial deposits and discontinuous layers of peat. Includes older alluvium and related deposits of Piper (1942), Willamette Silt (Allison, 1953; Wells and Peck, 1961), alluvial silt, sand, and gravel that form terrace deposits of Wells and others (1983), and Gresham and Estacada Formations of Trimble (1963). Includes deltaic gravel and sand and gravel bars, in pluvial lake basins in southeastern part of map area. In Rome Basin, includes discontinuous layers of poorly consolidated conglomerate characterized by well-rounded, commonly polished pebbles of chert and pebbles and cobbles of quartzite. In places contains mollusks or vertebrate fossils indicating Pleistocene age; mostly deposits of late Pleistocene age, but locally includes some deposits of early Holocene age. Includes Touchet Beds of Flint (1938), deposits of valley terraces of Newcomb (1965), and, in southeast Oregon, basin-filling deposits that incorporate Mazama ash deposits (Qma, Qmp) in the youngest layers

Lithology: clay or mud; silt; sand; gravel

Columbia River Basalt Group and related flows (Miocene) (Miocene) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Subaerial basalt and minor andesite lava flows and flow breccia; submarine palagonitic tuff and pillow complexes of the Columbia River Basalt Group (Swanson and others, 1979); locally includes invasive basalt flows. Flows locally grade laterally into subaqueous pillow-palagonite complexes and bedded palagonitic tuff and breccia. In places includes tuffaceous sedimentary interbeds. Joints commonly coated with nontronite and other clayey alteration products. Occurs principally in the Willamette Valley from Salem north to the Columbia River, and in the northern Coast Range. Unit includes correlative Cape Foulweather and Depoe Bay Basalts in the Coast Range (Snavely and others, 1973, 1976a, 1976b; Swanson and others, 1979; Wells and others, 1983). In Eastern Oregon, occurs principally in Deschutes-Umatilla Plateau and in the Blue Mountains. K-Ar ages range from about 6 to about 16.5 Ma (McKee and others, 1977; Swanson and others, 1979; Sutter, 1978; Lux, 1982). Locally separated into Tcs, Tcw, Tcg, Tcp, and Tci

Lithology: basalt; andesite

Alluvium (Holocene) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Mostly unconsolidated silt, sand, and gravel valley fill with some clay; includes low-level terrace, marsh, peat, artificial fill, and glacial deposits locally.