The Intra-Meeting Field Trip (afternoon of Wednesday, June 1) will travel northward from Crestone in a 70 mile-long loop to visit open trenches, previous trench sites, and range-front multiple-event fault scarps of the Sangre de Cristo fault zone. After returning to Crestone we will drive to the southern end of the Baca Grande subdivision for a view of the Crestone Group of Peaks, and a short visit to a Tibetan Buddhist stupa.
Here are some highlights of the Intra-Meeting Field Trip:
-Paleoseismic Teaching Trench of the Crestone Science Center (2001-present)
This trench was excavated in 2001 and has been used ever since for teaching the Summer Field Course on Neotectonics and Paleoseismology (crestonescience.org). It is the only permanent paleoseismic teaching trench in North America.
-Villa Grove Fault Zone, A Major Splay Fault
The Villa Grove fault zone is a 19 km-long splay fault of the Sangre de Cristo fault zone, easily seen on the 1-m LiDAR DEM. Splay faults are currently of interest for refining methods for Probabilistic Fault Displacement Hazard Analyses (PFDHA).
-Multiple-Event Fault Scarps of the Sangre de Cristo Fault Zone, the Major Creek Site
Alluvial terraces at the mouth of Major Creek are displaced vertically from 1.5 m to 23 m, across increasingly older geomorphic surfaces. Topographic profiles along the crest and toe of the scarp measured from LiDAR DEMs show the results of recurrent vertical slip through time. The second smallest scarp (3.8 m high) was trenched in 1980 and displayed evidence of two surface-faulting events, the younger of which dated at ~8 cal ka.
-Multiple-Event Fault Scarps of the Sangre de Cristo Fault Zone, the San Isabel Site
The multiple-event fault scarps at San Isabel Creek are even better-preserved, and display evidence of individual displacement events in the form of tectonic terraces eroded into the upthrown block.
-Scenic Viewpoint of the Crestone Group
The Crestone group of â€śFourteenersâ€ť (peaks higher than 14,000 ft) includes Crestone Peak, Crestone Needle, Kit Carson Mountain, and Challenger Point. The first three of these peaks were the last of the Fourteeners to be climbed in Colorado, due to their technical difficulty. Today they attract hundreds of climbers, including those trying to climb all 54 of Coloradoâ€™s 14ers, who save the Crestones for last.
-Tibetan Buddhist Stupa
The Crestone-Baca area is renowned for its 22 spiritual centers including 10 Tibetan Buddhist monasteries and retreat centers, Hindu ashrams, Christian monasteries, and Native American churches. We will make a quick visit to a Tibetan Buddhist stupa, one of the few in North America.