Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science - Geology



First Advisor

Dr. Chris Barker

Second Advisor

Dr. Melinda Faulkner

Third Advisor

Dr. Liane Stevens

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Joseph Musser

Fifth Advisor

Dr. Joseph Allen


The Sawatch Range within the Rocky Mountains of central Colorado exposes Paleoproterozoic basement and overlying Paleozoic sedimentary rocks with a complex history of ductile and brittle deformation.

The goal of this study is to conduct analyses of brittle structures that occur in the basement and cover units to determine geometric relationships between the structures, provide a detailed description of structures and refine a geologic history for structures along the basement-cover contact in the northeastern Sawatch Range along the Eagle River canyon and U.S. Highway 24 from Red Cliff to Gilman, Colorado. Paleoproterozoic basement rocks include the Cross Creek granite, diorites, and gneisses. The basement rocks are nonconformably overlain by the late Cambrian age Sawatch Formation.

Measurements of 60 fault planes were recorded and of those, 36 exhibited dip-slip or strike-slip movement. Faults exhibited an average northeast strike throughout the study area. Measurements of 151 joint planes were taken throughout the study area and joints exhibit a northwest strike on average. Structural trends observed in this area represent different orientations that were created by multiple deformational events throughout geologic history. These deformational events include the accretion of volcanic island arcs and continental crust onto Laurentia, Ancestral Rocky Mountain Uplift and the Laramide orogeny.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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