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Geology of the American Southwest

Geology of the American Southwest
A Journey through Two Billion Years of Plate-Tectonic History


  • Date Published: May 2004
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521016667

£ 39.99

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About the Authors
  • Two billion years of Earth history are represented in the rocks and landscape of the Southwest USA, creating natural wonders such as the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, and Death Valley. This region is considered a geologist's 'dream', since its rocks provide a slice through a huge range of Earth history, and provide examples of many of the geologic processes shaping the Earth. For this reason, the region attracts a large number of undergraduate field classes, and amateur geologists. Geology of the American Southwest, first published in 2004, provides a concise and accessible account of the geology of the region, and will prove invaluable to students studying here. It will also appeal to anyone interested in geology and landscape, and is a valuable guide for visitors to the National Parks of the region.

    • Was the first accessible and synoptic field guide to the Southwest USA
    • Covers geology of the Southwest's National Parks, including the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Death Valley, Canyonlands, Guadalupe Mountains, Capital Reef, Mesa Verde
    • Contains many illustrations and photos, and a colour plate section
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This well-written and well-illustrated book … provides an accessible account of the evolution of the region from the Palaeoproterozoic onwards.' Progress in Physical Geography

    'This is a very approachable book, and could be enjoyed by anyone with an interest in geology … this is a good read and sets out what was intended …'. The Open University Geological Society Journal

    '… the plot moves along briskly, unburdened by superfluous detail … clear analysis … this is an informative and entertaining book to buy the next time you take your family to see Carlsbad Caverns, Monument Valley or the Grand Canyon, or they take you to Phoenix or Las Vegas.' Geological Magazine

    'The level of the writing is appealing because it provides significant discussion concerning the subjects presented without requiring detailed knowledge of current research. … The book rises above a simple geologic guidebook without becoming a research book. It can be enjoyed by many seeking more in depth information about the exciting geology of the American Southwest.' The leading edge

    'A nice feature in the inclusion of "boxes" that explain terminology in reasonable detail … One doesn't have to be specifically interested in the Southwest to find this book interesting. … The text is not confined to only the Southwest of the United States, as it explains how the geology is revealed by the lithology, texture, and sequence of rock units. It's also especially interesting because the accretion of many of the terranes that expanded North America are in this area.' The Leading Edge

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2004
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521016667
    • length: 314 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.5kg
    • contains: 175 b/w illus. 16 colour illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Notes and abbreviations
    1. Growth of a continent: formation and stabilization of continental lithosphere
    2. Tantalizing time
    3. The international connection: breakup of a supercontinent
    4. Stability to orogeny: transformation of the Western Margin
    5. Pangea! Collision with Gondwana
    6. Deserts to dinosaurs
    7. Western orogeny
    8. The modern Southwest

  • Resources for

    Geology of the American Southwest

    W. Scott Baldridge

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  • Author

    W. Scott Baldridge, Los Alamos National Laboratory
    W. Scott Baldridge is a Research Scientist in the Earth and Environmental Sciences Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and an Adjunct Professor at the University of New Mexico. He is currently an associate editor of the Geological Society of America Bulletin, and has been an associate editor of the Journal of Geophysical Research. In 1998 he received an Excellence in Geophysical Education Award from the American Geophysical Union, and in 2000 a Special Commendation Award from the Society of Exploration Geophysicists. He has published widely in the scientific literature. His passion for field geology has taken him to all corners of the American Southwest, and beyond.

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