2015 GSA Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, USA (1-4 November 2015)
Paper No. 37-3
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-5:30 PM
BEDROCK GEOLOGY OF THE NEW RIVER GORGE NATIONAL RIVER, WEST VIRGINIA MAPPING TEN QUADRANGLES IN THE NEW RIVER GORG
HUNT, Paula J.1, MCCOLLOCH, Gayle H.1, MCCOLLOCH, Jane S.1, BLAKE Jr., Bascombe M.1, PECK, Robert L.2 and MATCHEN, David L.3, (1)West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey, 1 Mont Chateau Rd, Morgantown, WV 26508-8079, (2)Department of Physical Sciences, Concord University, Athens, WV 24712, (3)Weatherford Laboratories, Inc., 16161 Table Mountain Parkway, Golden, CO 80403, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Geologic Resources Division of the National Parks Service (NPS) contracted with the West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey to map bedrock geology in and around the New River Gorge National River park unit. The NPS protects over 53 miles (85 km) of the New River Gorge within the park boundary, and the map area includes ten United States Geological Survey 7½-minute topographic quadrangles: Beckwith, Fayetteville, Winona, Thurmond, Danese, Prince, Meadow Creek, Meadow Bridge, Hinton, and Talcott. The area is known for its incredible scenery and abundant recreational opportunities, including hiking, cycling, rock climbing, hunting, fishing, and whitewater rafting. Four West Virginia State Parks (Hawks Nest, Babcock, Bluestone, Little Beaver) and the Army Corps of Engineers' Bluestone Lake and Dam are located in the map area, as is a large portion of the Boy Scouts of America’s Summit Bechtel Reserve.
In addition to traditional field mapping, subsurface data were combined with field observations and used to project potential unit-contact locations at the surface. These contacts were field checked where observable and were invaluable for drawing map contacts in areas where units were not exposed in this heavily forested region.
The New River Gorge mapping project aids in defining the boundaries of paleovalleys filled with Mississippian and Pennsylvanian quartz-rich fluvial sands that became the Princeton, Pineville, Upper Raleigh, and Nuttall sandstones. The spectacular scenery of the New River Gorge is the result of erosion through these and other thick, resistant sandstones of the Hinton and New River formations.