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Sand-Making Processes—Normal and Abnormal: Abstract
The shoreline sands occurring along the coastlines of the northern Gulf of Mexico offer excellent samples of the varying processes that have created them and that determine their distribution. Sands of such varying origin as eolian sands of the south Texas sand sheet, the barrier islands and lagoonal sands of Padre Island-Laguna Madre, the barrier island sands of the Central Texas Bay-Barrier Island Province, the chenier sands of southwestern Louisiana the channel sands of the active and inactive passes of the Mississippi River delta complex, the reworked sands of the old distributary channels of the Mississippi delta, and the Mississippi-Alabama barrier island chain, are well documented in this almost unique basin of deposition. The point is strongly made that these sands are made by nearshore processes from other sand-containing sediments and are not deposited as such from their source. They in essence are all multicycle sands.
The normal shoreline and nearshore processes maintain these sand deposits in their present environments. Major storms, however completely disrupt these normal processes and cause unusual sand distributions. Many of the storm-caused distributions are repaired by the normal processes shortly after they are formed. Some however remain as a permanent distribution and probably are included in the geological record as such.
Many examples of sand bodies in the subsurface Tertiary of the Gulf Coast geosyncline are directly analogous to the normal and abnormal sand bodies available for study in the northern Gulf of Mexico.
Acknowledgments and Associated Footnotes
1 Pan American, Research Center, Tulsa
Copyright © 2006 by the Tulsa Geological Society