Suggested revisions to the Tertiary tectonic history of north-central New Mexico
Steven M. Cather
Based on a variety of new or re-evaluated geological and geophysical constraints, the following modifications to the Tertiary tectonic history of north-central New Mexico are proposed: (1) reverse faulting along the Pajarito fault zone defined the western boundary of a late Laramide basement uplift (Pajarito uplift) that was contiguous with the Sangre de Cristo uplift to the east; (2) the Tijeras fault zone constituted a releasing bend in the right-lateral strike-slip system of the Laramide southern Rocky Mountains and controlled extensional subsidence within an Eocene half-graben to the northwest (the Galisteo basin); (3) development of a flexural hinge along a Laramide precursor to the Santa Ana accommodation zone (new name) may have facilitated the southeastward tilting of the floor of the Galisteo basin and locally delineated the southern boundary of the Pajarito uplift; and (4) the Pajarito uplift began to collapse due to extension beginning in the late Oligocene– early Miocene, and continued subsidence and westward tilting of the resulting Espanola half-graben caused deposition of about 3 km of Santa Fe Group sediments near the Pajarito fault zone.
- Cather, Steven M., 1992, Suggested revisions to the Tertiary tectonic history of north-central New Mexico, in: San Juan Basin IV, Lucas, Spencer, G.; Kues, Barry S.; Williamson, Thomas E.; Hunt, Adrian P., New Mexico Geological Society, Guidebook, 43rd Field Conference, pp. 109-122.