Geologic units in Nebraska (state in United States)

Additional scientific data in this geographic area

Ogallala Group or Formation (Miocene) at surface, covers 63 % of this area

Silt, sand, sandstone, gravel and conglomerate. Predominantly interfingered fine- to coarse grained, poorly sorted, arkosic, fluvial deposits of light-gray, light-olive-gray, and grayish-green calcareous silt and sand, and locally poorly consolidated conglomerate, sandstone, and siltstone.

Dakota Group (Early Cretaceous) at surface, covers 7 % of this area

Upper part is white, light-gray, brownish-gray, yellow, redish-brown, and red sandstone and shale. Sandstone is very fine to coarse grained, friable, micaeous, crossbedded, and lenticular; locally contains gravel near base. contains numerous zones of ironstone and siltstone concretions of variable thickness. Middle part is light-gray, yellow, red brown and dark-gray, sandy carbonaceous shale; commonly contains a zone of concretions near top. Lower part is sandstone similar to that in upper except there are zones of siderite concretions and, locally a basal zone of chert pebbles. Approx. max thickness 600 ft.

Niobrara Formation (Late Cretaceous) at surface, covers 6 % of this area

Argillaceous chalk, limestone and shale. Chalk is medium gray to white, interbedded with thin layers of chalky shale; contains many fossil clams, oysters, and formanifera. Limestone is light gray to medium gray and yellowish gray, interbedded with medium-gray chalky shale; also contains fossil clams, oysters, and formanifera. Bedding plans commonly marked by thin layers of gypsum and locally a thin bed of red flint occurs at top of unit. Approx. max thickness 570 ft.

Pierre Shale (Late Cretaceous) at surface, covers 5 % of this area

Mostly medium to dark-gray, brownish-gray, and black, fissle clay shale. Locally grades to thin beds of calcareous, silty shale or claystone, marl, shaly sandstone, and sandy shale. Locally contains thin seams of gypsum and sparse selenite crystals. Approx. max thickness 1970 ft.

Carlile Shale (Late Cretaceous) at surface, covers 5 % of this area

Shale, limestone, and sandstone. At top, locally 5 feet of gray to pale-yellowish brown siltstone or very fine grained sandstone. Upper 200 feet of shale is drak gray to medium gray; locally contains ironstone concretions, and interbedded with thin siltstone. Lower 80 feet of shale is medium gray, calcareous, and contains many very thin bedded, fossiliferous, shaly limestone and calcareous shale layers. Approx. max thickness 300 ft.

White River Group (Oligocene) at surface, covers 4 % of this area

Clay, some claystone, silt and siltstone. Predominantly greenish gray and volcaniclastic. Other occurrences are greenish gray to white and bentonitic. Local channel sandstone at base. Aprox thickness 195 ft.

Arikaree Group (Miocene to Oligocene) at surface, covers 3 % of this area

Consists mainly of gray, fine, loose to compact sand that has layers of hard, fine-grained dark-gray concretions which vary from few in to 15 in and often have tabular form. Includes a large amount of volcanic ash mixed in with the sand. Contains a number of channels filled with coarse conglomerate along ridge south of North Platte River. About 500 ft thick.

Greenhorn Limestone and Graneros Shale (Late Cretaceous) at surface, covers 2 % of this area

Greenhorn Limestone- medium- to light-gray limestone interbedded with argillaceous limestone, marl and calcareous shale; contains Inoceramus fossils. Upper and lower contacts gradational. Approx. max thickness 30 ft. Graneros Shale- medium- to dark-gray, partly calcareous shale. Interbeds of siltstone, sandstone, and carbonaceous shale, and thin bentonite layers in upper part. Approx. max thickness 60 ft.

Wabaunsee Group (Late Pennsylvanian - Virgilian) at surface, covers 2 % of this area

Shale, sandstone, and interbedded limestone. Shale is light gray to dark gray, greenish gray, red, or black; contains very thin layers of siltstone; locally very fossiliferous, carbonaceous. Sandstone is brownish gray to yellowish gray, or gray, argillaceous , and micaceous. Limestone is dark gray to medium gray, yellowish gray, thin bedded to thick bedded; very fossiliferous. Contains coal beds less than 1 ft. thick. Approx. max thickness 300 ft

Council Grove Group (Permian) at surface, covers 1 % of this area

Shale and interbedded limestone. Shale is gray, green, red, reddish brown, or maroon, sandy, calcareous, fossiliferous, locally fissile; several fissile black shale beds are in lower 75 feet. Interbedded dark- to light-gray, medium- to thick-bedded, argillaceous, cherty limestone beds are very fossiliferous and locally contain shale partings. Approx. max thickness 300 ft

Admire Group (Permian) at surface, covers 0.6 % of this area

Shale and interbedded limestone. Shale is dark gray to light gray, brown, red, or green, sandy, calcareous, and fossiliferous. Interbedded dark- to light-gray, very thin to medium bedded, argillaceous, very fossiliferous limestone beds. Near top of unit a fine-grained, micaceous sandstone bed underlies a stromatolite limestone bed which has distinctive lobate bedding. Approx. max thickness 150 ft

Chase Group (Permian) at surface, covers 0.6 % of this area

Limestone and shale. Limestone is light gray to dark gray, yellowish gray to pale yellowish brown. Two limestones in the upper part are thin bedded to medium bedded, argillaceous, cherty and fossiliferous; two limestones in the lower part are medium to massive bedded, very cherty, and fossiliferous. Shale is gray, green, red, redish brown, calcareous, arenaceous, fossiliferous; locally fissile. Approx. max thickness 300 ft.

Kansas City Group (Late Pennsylvanian - Missouria) at surface, covers 0.4 % of this area

Limestone and shale. Limestone is dark gray to light gray, brownish gray, very thin bedded to massive, argillaceous, fossiliferous; contains very thin layers of chert, pyrite crystals, and small flakes of mica near base. Shale is dark gray to light gray, greenish gray, red, and black; locally slighty sandy, calcareous, carbonaeous, fissile, and fossiliferous. Approx. max thickness 200 ft

Shawnee Group (Late Pennsylvanian - Virgilian) at surface, covers 0.3 % of this area

Limestone, shale and siltstone. Limestone is dark gray to very light gray, yellowish gray, very thin bedded to massive bedded, and fossiliferous; locally the thin bedds are argillaceous other beds are oolitic and a few contain chert. Shale is medium gray, greenish gray, pale red, dark redish brown, black, sandy fossiliferous and calcareous; black shale in part is fissile. Siltstone is light gray to greenish yellow, massive, calcareous; locally sandy. Approx. max thickness 200 ft

Marmaton Group (Middle Pennsylvanian - Desmoinesian) at surface, covers 0.2 % of this area

Shale and limestone. Shale is dark gray to light gray, greenish gray, black, red, silty, sandy carbonaceous, fissile, calcareous; contains scattered limestone nodules. Limestone is medium gray to light gray, red, mottled thin bedded to thick bedded, sandy, shaly, vuggy, fossiliferous. Approx. max thickness 125 ft

Lansing Group (Late Pennsylvanian - Missourian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Limestone and shale. Limestone is dark gray to light gray, very thin bedded to massive, sandy fossiliferous, and cherty. Shale is dark gray to light gray, maroon, black, fossiliferous, and calcareous. Approx. max thickness 75 ft

Douglas Group (Late Pennsylvanian - Virgilian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Shale and limestone. Shale is dark gray to medium gray, red , black, fossiliferous, calcareous and locally sandy. Limestone is dark gray to light gray, thin bedded to thick bedded, fossiliferous and locally sandy. Approx. max thickness 100 ft

Fox Hills Formation (Late Cretaceous) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Consists of fossiliferous, gray, ferruginous and yellowish fine-grained sandstone, arenaceous clays and a few interbeds of gray to brown sandy shale and coal totaling 172 ft thick at that section. Estimated thickness 500 ft.

Carlile Shale (Upper Cretaceous) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Dark-gray to black, silty to sandy shale with several zones of septarian, fossiliferous, carbonate concretions. Contains up to three sandstone units in the upper portion of the formation and sandy calcareous marl at the base. Thickness up to 330 ft (100 m).

Marmaton Group (Middle Pennsylvanian, upper Desmoinesian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Morgan School, Mouse Creek, Labette, Pawnee, Bandera, Altamont, Nowata, Lenapah, Memorial, Lost Branch formations. Primary Lithologies: shale/mudstone, light to dark gray; limestone, fossiliferous. Secondary Lithologies: mudstone, green-gray to red/maroon; shale, black, phosphatic; sandstone, very fine to medium grained. Minor: coal; siltstone, conglomerate. Maximum thicknesses: 125-175 ft (38-52 m).

Dakota Formation (Upper to Lower Cretaceous) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Light- to reddish-brown, medium- to coarse-grained quartz and minor feldspar sandstone grading upward to a fine- to medium-grained, quartz and minor feldspar sandstone. Contains a middle, gray silty clay unit, and interbeds of gray to dark-gray shale in the upper portion. Thickness up to 450 ft (137 m).

Niobrara Formation (Upper Cretaceous) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

White to dark-gray argillaceous chalk, marl, and shale. Weathers yellow to orange. Contains thin, laterally continuous bentonite beds, chalky carbonaceous shale, minor sand, and small concretions. Thickness up to 150 ft (46 m).

Holocene series (Quaternary-Holocene Series) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Alluvium - clay, silt, sand, and gravel.

Dakata and Windrow Formations (“Mid” Cretaceous; upper Albian-upper Cenomanian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Dakota Formation widespread in western Iowa, lower sandstone-dominated Nishnabotna Member, upper mudstone/shale-dominated Woodbury Member. Correlative Windrow Formation found as erosional outliers in northeastern and north-central Iowa. Primary lithologies: sandstone, quartzose, very fine to medium grained; mudstone/shale, light to dark gray, variably silty-sandy, noncalcareous (Woodbury Mbr.). Secondary lithologies: sandstone, medium to very coarse grained, part pebbly to gravelly, locally cemented by iron oxides (Nishnabotna Mbr., Windrow Fm.), gravel, quartz and chert clasts; siltstone; mudstone, red, pink, yellow-brown, black (carbonaceous). Minor: lignite; siderite (concretions, pedogenic sphaerosiderite pellets, cemented siltstone); massive iron ore, silty to sandy (Windrow Fm.). Maximum thickness Dakota Fm. 500 ft (150 m), commonly 100-300 ft (30-90 m); Windrow Fm. 40 ft (12 m).

Upper Cherokee Group (Middle Pennsylvanian, middle Desmoinesian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Verdigris and Swede Hollow formations; base of map unit drawn at the widespread Whitebreast Coal. Primary Lithologies: shale/mudstone, light to dark gray, part silty to sandy; siltstone, gray. Secondary Lithologies: limestone, part fossiliferous, part sandy; sandstone, very fine to fine-grained. Minor: mudstone, red/maroon to brown; shale, black, phosphatic; carbonaceous shale; coal (beds locally > 2 ft); ironstone/siderite concretions; limestone concretions (may be septarian); pyrite. Average thickness 100 ft (30 m); maximum thicknesses to 130 ft (40 m).

Greenhorn Formation (Upper Cretaceous) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Gray shale, mudstone, marl, calcarenite, and shaly limestone grading upward into light-gray to tan, alternating marl and thin-bedded, fossiliferous limestone. Thickness up to 40 ft (12 m).

Pierre Shale (Upper Cretaceous) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Blue-gray to dark-gray, fissile to blocky shale with persistent beds of bentonite, black organic shale, and light-brown chalky shale. Contains minor sandstone, conglomerate, and abundant carbonate and ferruginous concretions. Thickness up to 1,000 ft (305 m).

Shawnee Group (Upper Pennsylvanian, lower-middle Virgilian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Oread, Kanwaka, Lecompton, Tecumseh, Deer Creek, Calhoun, Topeka formations. Primary Lithologies: limestone, fossiliferous, part coated grain/Osagia; shale/mudstone, light to dark gray. Secondary Lithologies: pedogenic mudstone, part calcareous/nodular; siltstone to very fine sandstone; black shale, phosphatic. Minor: chert; coal, coaly shale; red-brown mudstone. Maximum thicknesses 190-220 ft (58-67 m).

White River Group (Oligocene to Eocene) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Includes: Brule Formation (Oligocene)- White, pink, light-green, and light-brown, massive to thin-bedded, bentonitic claystone, tuffaceous siltstone, and well-bedded, calcareous, tuffaceous quartz sandstone. Thickness up to 150 ft (46 m). Chadron Formation (Eocene)- Upper beds are gray, light-brown to maroon bentonite, claystone, siltstone tuffaceous fine-grained sandstone, and local, silicified carbonate lenses. Basal portion consists of poorly cemented, white, coarse-grained arkose and conglomerate. Thickness up to 160 ft (49 m). Chamberlain Pass Formation (Eocene)- Pale olive to pale red, mottled mudstone containing white, cross-bedded channel sandstone with basal conglomerate. Thickness up to 32 ft (10 m). Slim Buttes Formation (Eocene)- White, grayish- to yellowish-orange,pale-red to pink siltstone, clayey siltstone, bentonitic claystone,medium- to fine-grained sandstone, and conglomerate. Thickness up to 48 ft (15 m).

Douglas Group (Upper Pennsylvanian, upper Missourian-lower Virgilian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Stranger, Cass, Lawrence formations. Primary Lithologies: shale and mudstone, light to dark gray, part silt laminated. Secondary Lithologies: limestone, fossiliferous, part coated grain; siltstone to very fine sandstone; pedogenic mudstone, part red-brown, part calcareous/nodular. Minor: coal, carbonaceous shale; black shale. Maximum thicknesses 90-135 ft (27-41 m).

Bronson Group (Middle to Upper Pennsylvanian, uppermost Desmoinesian-lower Missourian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Pleasanton, Hertha, Elm Branch, Swope, Galesburg, Dennis formations. Primary Lithologies: limestone, fossiliferous; shale/mudstone, light to dark gray. Secondary lithologies: mudstone to siltstone, gray to green-gray; limestone, coated grain. Minor: black shale, phosphatic; red/maroon mudstone; coal; chert. Maximum thicknesses 100-130 ft (30-40 m).

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

Clay to boulder-size clasts with locally abundant organic material. Thickness up to 75 ft (23m).

Lansing Group (Upper Pennsylvanian, upper Missourian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Plattsburg, Vilas, Stanton formations. Primary Lithologies: limestone, fossiliferous; shale/mudstone, light to dark gray. Secondary Lithologies: limestone, coated grain/Osagia; mudstone to siltstone, gray. Minor: black shale, phosphatic; mudstone, red-brown. Maximum thicknesses 45-78 ft (14-24 m).

Kansas City Group (Upper Pennsylvanian, middle Missourian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Cherryvale, Nellie Bly, Dewie, Chanute, Iola, Liberty Memorial, Wyandotte, Lane formations. Primary Lithologies: limestone fossiliferous; shale/mudstone, light to dark gray. Secondary Lithologies: limestone, coated grain/Osagia. Minor: mudstone, red-brown to green-gray; siltstone; black shale, phosphatic; thin coal, carbonaceous shale. Maximum thicknesses 100-140 ft (30-43 m).

Wabaunsee Group (Upper Pennsylvanian, middle-upper Virgilian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Interval includes Howard, White Cloud, Scranton, Bern, Auburn, Emporia, Willard, Zeandale, Pillsbury, Stotler, Root formations. Primary Lithologies: shale, light to dark gray; mudstone, gray, part laminated silty to sandy. Secondary Lithologies: limestone, fossiliferous, part coated grain/Osagia; pedogenic mudstone, part red to maroon, part calcareous/nodular; siltstone to very fine sandstone. Minor: black shale; coal. Maximum thickness 320 ft (98 m) in Fremont County.

Terrace Deposits (Quaternary) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Clay to boulder-size clasts deposited as pediments, paleochannels, and terrace fills of former flood plains. Thickness up to 75 ft (23m).

Ogallala Group (Early Pleistocene to Miocene) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Includes: Ash Hollow Formation- White, tan, and gray, well-cemented, calcareous sandstone and silty limestone often referred to as "mortar beds". Thickness 90-250 ft 27-76 m) Valentine Formation- Gray, unconsolidated, fine- to coarse grained, fluvial siltstone, channel sandstone, and gravel derived from western sources. Thickness 175-225 ft (53-69 m). Fort Randall Formation- Pink and gray claystone with interbedded sandstone. Also includes green to gray orthoquartzite, bentonitic clay, and conglomerate. Thickness up to 130 ft (40 m).

Arikaree Group (Oligocene to Eocene) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Includes: Rosebud Formation (Miocene)- Pink siltstone with channel sandstone and concretions. Thickness up to 250 ft (76 m). Harrison Formation (Miocene)- Gray, silty sandstone and reworked volcanic ash with calcareous siltstone and marl. Thickness 180 ft (55 m). Turtle Butte Formation (Miocene)- Light-green to gray siltstone with sandstone channels containing claystone pebbles. Thickness 65 ft (20 m). Monroe Creek Formation (Oligocene)- Tan to grayish-tan, massive sandy siltstone and reworked volcanic ash. Thickness 100 ft (30 m). Sharps Formation (Oligocene)- Pink siltstone and claystone with concretionary layers, paleochannels, and beds of reworked volcanic ash. Thickness 360 ft (110 m).

Ogallala Fm (Tertiary) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Loose to well-cemented sand and gravel

Graneros Shale (Upper Cretaceous) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Dark-gray, noncalcareous, pyritic, poorly fossiliferous shale, with numerous sandstone layers at the base. Thickness up to 110 ft (36 m).

Upper Miocene Rocks (Upper Miocene) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Southwest Wyoming: South end of Wind River Range--Siliceous, arkosic, and locally radioactive sandstone, claystone, and conglomerate. Fission-track age about 27 Ma. Recent work suggests that part of these deposits may be of Eocene age. Pliocene and Miocene (as originally defined 2) South Pass Formation. Saratoga Valley--White to greenish-gray tuffaceous sandstone, siltstone, and claystone; locally conglomeratic. North Park Formation; Central Wyoming: Arkosic sandstone, conglomerate, and siltstone; some light-colored tuffaceous radioactive claystone and white cherty limestone. North of Sweetwater River in Granite Mountains--Light-colored tuffaceous radioactive claystone, siltstone, sandstone, and arkose. Moonstone Formation; East Wyoming: Light-colored tuffaceous claystone, sandstone, and conglomerate. Ogallala Formation in Denver Basin.

White River Fm or Group (Tertiary) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

East: Ashy claystone and sandstone. Includes Castle Rock Conglomerate in region southeast of Denver. Northwest: Ashy claystone in North Park

Modern alluvium (Quaternary) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Includes Piney Creek Alluvium and younger deposits

Lower Cherokee Group and Raccoon Creek Group (Lower-Middle Pennsylvanian; Morrowan-lower Desmoinesian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Lower Cherokee Group in southern, central, and western Iowa includes Kilbourn, Kalo, Floris formations (primarily Atokan-lower Desmoinesian, locally Morrowan at base); Raccoon Creek Group in eastern Iowa includes “Caseyville” and Tradewater formations (primarily Morrowan at most localities; locally includes Atokan-lower Desmoinesian Tradewater Formation in upper part). Primary Lithologies: shale/mudstone, light to dark gray, part silty to sandy; sandstone, very fine to medium grained; siltstone, gray. Secondary Lithologies: carbonaceous shale/mudstone, gray to black; phosphatic black shale; limestone, dense, part fossiliferous, part sandy; coal (beds locally > 2 ft). Minor: sandstone, coarse-grained to granular, part conglomeratic; mudstone, red to pink; limestone concretions (may be septarian); cone-in-cone limestone; siderite/ironstone concretions and pellets; pyrite. Maximum thicknesses Raccoon Creek Group in Muscatine-Scott counties: 230-250 ft (70-75 m). Maximum thicknesses Lower Cherokee Group across outcrop belt: 200-370 ft (60-113 m). Maximum thickness in southwest Iowa subsurface: 650 ft (200 m).

Gravels and alluviums (Quaternary) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Includes Broadway and Louviers Alluviums

Ogallala Formation (Miocene) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

massive to cross-bedded, generally arkosic sand, silt and gravel, locally cemented with calcium carbonate; also contains limestone, volcanic ash, diatomaceous marl, opaline sandstone and bentonitic clay

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

unconsolidated sand, silt, clay, and gravel