Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Titus Canyon: The Klare Spring Breccia

Klare Spring in Titus Canyon is well known as a petroglyph site (with a sign and everything); it is less well known as a breccia site and as a place to view the low-angle normal faults of the Titus Canyon fault zone (TCFZ). MOH and I were both immediately attracted to the breccia, and then—after examining it closely—we turned our attention to the various petroglyphs. (If you want petroglyphs, go here, here, or here, or to other Google-able websites.)
The breccia is the orange-brown mass of rock that MOH is inspecting intently. It's composed largely of fragments of Carrara Formation (Єc), with a few scattered chunks of gray limestone, which are presumably from either the Carrara Formation or the tectonically higher Bonanza King Formation (Єb). The upper strand of the Titus Canyon fault zone (TCFZ) cuts above the breccia, somewhere between my Єc and Єb labels, possibly at the base of the first cliff, or possibly behind and above that cliff. Rocks in this lower part look brecciated to me, but I didn't scramble up the slope to see them in person.

In fact, here are some of my ideas about the placement of the upper strand (or multiple upper strands?) of the TCFZ.
An image from Google Earth approximating the first photos.
I wasn't sure whether the two very large angular fragments of gray limestone, including the block festooned with petroglyphs, were an actual part of the tectonic breccia, or whether they had at some point slid down the cliffs and been cemented in place by the waters of Klare Spring.
Angular fragments of the Carrara Formation are healed by travertine.
The waters of Klare Spring emerge from the lower strand of the Titus Canyon fault zone, just down-canyon from the petroglyph site. The lower strand has placed this fractured, shattered, and brecciated Carrara Formation over the older Wood Canyon Formation (ZЄw, see next photo set).
Looking up canyon past Klare Spring.
I happened to shoot this pic looking eastward, back toward Klare Spring from a couple hundred yards down canyon. Once again, I had fortuitously grabbed a view of the TCFZ, this time including the lower strand that runs right through Klare Spring, and also including the upper strand (although the exact location is of that strand(s) is imprecise).
The same view with some geologic labels, including a few question marks.
The faults up the canyon (on the right) were seen in more detail in an earlier post; basically, we're looking at the upper strand of the TCFZ, which has placed the Bonanza King (Єb) over the Carrara (Єc) and some possible breccia (labeled "?"). Klare Spring is past the white car in the lower left of the photo. The lower strand of the TCFZ, which runs right through Klare Spring according to many, places the pale orange brecciated Carrara (Єc bx) over the reddish brown rocks of the Wood Canyon Formation (ZЄw). I've labeled the Bonanza King where I'm sure of it (Єb), and have left the first light gray cliff above the Єc breccia as "?". These lower cliffs, held up by rocks that appear brecciated in the first set of photos, might be composed of Carrara or Bonanza King, or even some tectonic jumble of both.

And so, we've left Klare Spring, and will continue our way down the canyon...

Location map

Related Posts:
The Approach to Titus Canyon: Tan Mountain
The Approach to Titus Canyon: Up and over White Pass
The Approach to Titus Canyon: To Red Pass
The Approach to Titus Canyon: Just Below Red Pass
A Hike at Red Pass, Titus Canyon Road, Death Valley, CA
Titus Canyon Road: A Little History and a Few Maps
Down into Titus Canyon: We Leave Red Pass Behind (Finally!)
Titus Canyon: The Upper Part of Lost Canyon
Leadfield: Scams with a Side of Geology
Leadfield: Views from Old Mine Buildings
Leadfield: Geology...and a Cactus...on the Way Back to the Parking Area
Almost Titus Canyon: Is This a Fold? And... Apparent Dip with Post-it® Notes
Titus Canyon: The TCFZ, the FCFZ, and a few Other Faults
Titus Canyon: Another Look at the Titus Canyon Fault and A Scramble
Titus Canyon: We Make Our Way Toward Klare Spring

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