2005 Salt Lake City Annual Meeting (October 16–19, 2005)

Paper No. 5
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM


GARRETSON, Clay C., Paleontological Geologist, PaleoWorld Research Foundation, 1214 Mays Branch Road, Van Buren, AR 72956 and HATCHER, Joseph, Curator of Paleontology, PaleoWorld Research Foundation, Garfield County Museum, P.O. Box 408, Jordan, MT 59337, paleogeologist@gmail.com

A stratigraphic study of the Upper Hell Creek Formation in Garfield County, Montana was conducted to obtain a detailed geologic description of the formation which is famous for its many dinosaur excavations. Few geologic studies have been undertaken to describe the stratigraphy and sedimentology of the outcrops of the Hell Creek Formation at the research locale.

In order to advance the research, the study area was divided into sections each of roughly forty acres and a stratigraphic section was taken from each. Locations for the individual sections were recorded with GPS. Vertical stratigraphic data for this study was collected by measurement of the lithologic units being described. These measurements were recorded in a field notebook and transferred into RockWorks computer software to produce a startigraphic section and after completion of the study a series of fence diagrams were constructed.

When interpreted in the context of the paleoenviromental implications this study provides a more complete picture of the paleoenviroment of the area than previously available, thereby assisting in the future location of fossilized dinosaur remains and clues to their lifestyle. In short, this study has done for the Upper Hell Creek of Garfield County, Montana what Hoganson and Murphy's paper (Hoganson and Murphy, 2002) on the outcrops of the formation in North Dakota did for the understanding of its features there.