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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 57 (1973)

Issue: 4. (April)

First Page: 782

Last Page: 782

Title: Repetitive Carbonate-Bank Development and Subsequent Terrigenous Inundation; Cambrian Carrara Formation, Southern Great Basin: ABSTRACT

Author(s): Robert B. Halley

Article Type: Meeting abstract


Three times during the deposition of the Lower and Middle Cambrian Carrara Formation, shallow-water carbonate banks developed in southern Nevada and southeastern California. Each bank attained a minimum width of 150 km normal to the depositional strike. Eastward the banks were bordered by terrigenous clays, silts, and sands from the stable craton, and westward they were bordered by siliceous "lime" muds lacking shallow-water depositional features. The position of rock units with respect to 5 trilobite faunules within the Carrara suggests that carbonate deposition waxed and waned subsequent to eastward and westward migrations of areas of detrital sedimentation.

During each of the 3 episodes of carbonate deposition, a sequence of 4 lithologic changes is repeated as follows: (1) upward fining and thinning of terrigenous clastic deposits; (2) the beginning of carbonate deposition, first as scattered skeletal grainstones, later as oolitic grainstone, oncolite packstone, and "lime" mudstone accumulating as a shallow subtidal bank; (3) the deposition of loferites, bird's-eye and mudcracked limestones, cryptalgal laminites, and stromatolites as low carbonate islands on the western half of the banks; and (4) the relatively abrupt termination of carbonate deposition with renewed sedimentation of detrital clay and silt. Each sequence is repeated farther east during succeeding episodes of carbonate sedimentation.

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