Geology of the Sierra Nevada (California Natural History Guides)
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
The author introduces the rocks of the Sierra Nevada, which tell the mountains' tale, and explains how nature's forces, such as volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, faulting, erosion, and glaciation formed the range's world-renowned scenery and mineral wealth, including gold.
For thirty years, the first edition of Geology of the Sierra Nevada has been the definitive guide to the Sierra Nevada's geological history for nature lovers, travelers, hikers, campers, and armchair explorers. This new edition offers new chapters and sidebars and incorporates the concept of plate tectonics throughout the text.
* Written in easy-to-understand language for a wide audience.
* Gives detailed information on where to view outstanding Sierra Nevada geology in some of the world's most beloved natural treasures and national parks, including Yosemite.
* Provides specific information on places to see glaciers and glacial deposits, caves, and exhibits of gold mines and mining equipment, many from Gold Rush times.
* Superbly illustrated with 117 new color illustrations, 16 halftones, 39 line illustrations, and 12 maps, and also features an easy-to-use, interactive key for identifying rocks and a glossary of geological terms.
housed in Sausalito, Marin County, and is open to the public. You can watch the tides in speeded-up action, see the water rise and fall, and measure the eﬀect changes in the land or water have on the entire system. Those who made the model and those who use it (it can be rented for testing purposes) are not interested in gold (although their equipment could be used to study placer gold deposits), but in how streams behave. They need to know how fast a reservoir will ﬁll with sediment and how to
continents may have slithered sideways, as well. The neat match of South America and Africa, for example (particularly if one includes the continental shelves), makes it look as if a giant had ripped them apart.The ancient Greeks, who noticed so much, were unaware of this as they did not have maps showing the Americas. But as early as 1596, only a century after Columbus and those after him alerted Europe to the existence of the Western Hemisphere, the Dutch mapmaker Abraham Ortelius suggested in
western part during Paleozoic time from about 540 million to 250 million years ago. Somewhere east of today’s mountains lay land. Very little is left of the creatures that lived in those ancient seas. Fossils are scarce in the Sierra, largely because most remnants of life were destroyed when the layers of rock that entombed them were pushed upward, bent, twisted, and faulted during plate tectonic episodes that created the range. A Backward Look Suppose you were to travel backward in time and
may bend the thin icicles or twist them, if they are ﬁrmly anchored to the edge of the roof. Calcite helictites may have a similar origin—pressure—but other factors, such as chemical changes, may also inﬂuence the development of the thin helictites. Cave helictites grow as water seeps slowly through the narrow helictite core, never forming a drop, but depositing calcite around the hole in the tip. The time it takes nature to produce these marvels is quite long. Stalactites rarely grow more than
spreads out a superb exhibit of metamorphosed rock, stacked upright for inspection. Some of the oldest rocks in the Sierra are exhibited in the panorama at Convict Lake, near Bishop. Almost the whole Paleozoic story of the Sierra Nevada is told in these rocks. 172 SEAS OF LONG AGO portant clues to the forces that helped construct and elevate the Sierra Nevada. Serpentine can be found in most Sierran counties, sometimes forming distinctive greenish or dark outcrops or road cuts. Because