Hunt Fork Shale

Unit symbol: Degh
Age range Devonian (393.3 to 358.9 Ma)
Lithology: Sedimentary
Group name: Hunt Fork Shale (Endicott Group)
Mostly shale and sandstone; shale is medium-dark- and olive-gray; sandstone is grayish-green and greenish-gray, mostly fine- to medium-grained, micaceous, and locally ripple crossbedded and or graded, widely distributed across northern Alaska. Unit locally subdivided into three informal members: a shale member that consists of mudstone, shale, and sandstone; a wacke member; and a limestone member (Brosgé and others, 2001; Harris and others, 2009). Shale member weathers black to brown; where locally pyritic, weathers rusty and contains a few ironstone concretions. Mudstone and shale are medium- to medium-dark-gray, very silty, fissile, and interbedded with sandstone. Interbedded sandstone is as much as 25 percent brown-weathering, thin-bedded, fine-grained, partly calcareous sandstone and graywacke that includes both quartz-chert arenite and quartz-chert wacke; sandstone is schistose in southern part of its exposure area, as well as minor thin beds of ferruginous, argillaceous, fossiliferous limestone. Unit displays a cyclic depositional pattern with siltstone grading upward into shale; limestone occurs in upper parts of some cycles (Brosgé and others, 1979; Kelley, 1990a). Wacke member is included here with the Noatak Sandstone, unit Degn. Informal dark-gray limestone member weathers yellow, brown, and gray and is thin- to medium-bedded or nodular and has common algal lumps. Commonly includes some orange-weathering, partly calcareous siltstone and fine-grained sandstone above or below the limestone. Unit is metamorphosed in core of Brooks Range and where found thrust imbricated in the Doonerak Window. Where metamorphosed, it consists of dark-gray to black phyllite and lesser gray-green phyllite with thin layers of siliceous or calcareous metasiltstone, lithic wacke, metasandstone, and minor layers of fossiliferous metalimestone. Locally massive mafic sills and dikes up to 10 m thick are common. Mafic bodies in the unit (both strongly and weakly foliated parts) display lower greenschist-facies minerals (Till and others, 2008a). Fossils include brachiopods (late Frasnian to early Famennian), mollusks, echinoderms, and Middle to Late Devonian conodonts (Brosgé and others, 1979; Till and others, 2008a)

Source map information

Source map Mull, C.G., Moore, T.E., Harris, E.E., and Tailleur, I.L., 1994, Geologic map of the Killik River quadrangle, Brooks Range, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 94-679, 1 sheet, scale 1:125,000.
Symbol Dhf
Unit name Hunt Fork Shale; Endicott Mountains Allochthon, Killik River Sequence
Description Dark gray- and olive-green shale, with interbedded thin bedded quartz-chert wacke, quartzite, sandstone, and minor conglomerate in upper part north of Toyuk thrust, grades upwards into Noatak Sandstone; dominantly micaceous phyllitic shale in lower part; interpreted as a pro-delta deposit, more than 1000 m thick. South of Toyuk thrust, unit grades progressively down from thinly interbedded greenish-gray micaceous sandstone and phyllite into dominantly micaceous phyllite that forms smoothly weathered slopes with conspicuous micaceous sheen.
Lithology Sedimentary

Correlated geologic units

Label Dhf
Description Endicott Group, Hunt Fork Shale
Geologic age Frasnian to Famennian
Geologic setting Sedimentary, slope-and-deep-water
Lithology Form Importance
Shale < Mudstone < Clastic < Sedimentary Bed Major
Phyllite < Metaclastic < Metasedimentary < Metamorphic Indeterminate, major
Shale < Mudstone < Clastic < Sedimentary Carbonaceous Incidental
Siltstone < Clastic < Sedimentary Bed Incidental