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Geology of the South Unit, Theodore Roosevelt National Memorial Park

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0.010.9Leave main highway on west end of Park area.
0.510.4Old entrance to Park
0.810.1Sandstone concretions. Note holes made by wind abrasion. Bank swallows nest in these holes.
1.59.4Sandstone concretions on west side of road. Clinker caps hills to the northeast.
1.69.3Sandstone concretions. Close inspection shows excellent ripple mark cross bedding.
1.89.1Edge of Johnson Plateau. Edge of the upper old valley which is the No. 4 level of this report.
2.58.4Note clinker capping hills to the northeast.
2.98.0Begin dropping off the Johnson Plateau.
3.77.2Begin the No. 3 terrace level.
3.97.0Edge of the No. 3 terrace level. Start the No. 2 terrace.
3.956.95Road to the south to the picnic area.
4.16.8Road to the east, junction with road to Park Headquarters.
4.26.7Inner edge of the No. 2 level.
4.56.4Inner edge of the No. 3 level.
4.66.3Impure lignite outcrop.
5.05.9Lignitic shale in the road ditch. Badly broken plant fossils.
5.15.8View to west over Little Missouri Valley.
5.25.7White efflorescense on the rocks is probably calcium carbonate brought to the surface and deposited when the water evaporated.
5.45.5Note clinker capping the hills to the north. Poor grade of lignite in road ditch on south side of road.
5.85.1Massive sandstone concretions on the south side of road.
6.44.5Good stand of badland cedar. Note clinker on hilltop to south.
6.54.4Sandstone concretions to the south.
6.74.2Clinker outcrop showing some of the unburned coal still present with ash at the top.
6.94.0Note level to the north. This level is probably equivalent to the level of the Johnson Plateau and is probably part of the old upper stream surface (No. 4 Level). Note clinker to the north above the road.
7.03.9Clinker outcrop to north. Note the excellent example of pseudocolumnar jointing.
7.13.8Note sandstone concretions and how they cap erosion pillar to the south.
7.23.7Note extensive gullying on the sides of the buttes to the north. Clinker to the north and south.
8.22.7Road to south to Ridgeline Nature Trail Good stand of badland cedar.
8.32.6Log-like sandstone concretions at road side to the north. Thin zone of these concretions runs to the east here for a short distance.
8.62.3Excellent view to south. Highest level seen is probably the same as the Johnson Plateau (No. 4 level). The level below it is probably the No. 3 level. Fine examples here of gullying on the sides of the buttes. Note also the bedding of the bedrock strata.
8.72.2Note dark gray and purple lignitic shales to the north.
8.752.15Parking overlook. In the general view to the north and west the level immediately below upland surface is probably the No. 4 level. Note clinker below the overlook and in the distance.
9.01.9Note the small bench held up by gray clay. Note Sequoia stumps to the north.
9.31.5Note sandstone concretions to the north.
9.51.4Good examples of gullying on both sides of road.
9.61.3Small cave to the north on the side of a butte.
9.91.0Fossil Sequoia stump zone on the north side of the road.
10.30.6Clay-capped buttes on both sides of the road.
10.40.5Good examples of gullying action.
10.90.0Checking station at the east end of the Park.
Plate 1. Map of the Park area. (click on image for an enlargement in a new window)

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Last Updated: 28-Mar-2006