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Does the Owl Creek fault zone of north-central Wyoming extend to the Black Hills of South Dakota? Implications for basement architecture of the Wyoming Province
The North Owl Creek fault is an E-W-striking, basement-rooted Laramide structure located in the Owl Creek Mountains of north-central Wyoming that likely has Precambrian origins. It is defined by a rectilinear zone of deformation that extends eastward into the subsurface where it is postulated to intersect the Kaycee fault zone of the western Powder River Basin, and perhaps extends into western South Dakota along the Dewey fault zone. Several localized basement-rooted wrench zones have been identified in the foreland of the North American Cordillera; however, identification of more regional zones has been minimal. The presence of larger fault zones that cut nearly the entire Archean basement across the Wyoming Province has implications for Precambrian plate tectonics and structural inheritance in foreland basins such as the Powder River. This paper presents results of a structural analysis that tests this hypothesis.
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