List of large volume volcanic eruptions in the Basin and Range Province

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Large volume volcanic eruptions in the Basin and Range Province include Basin and Range eruptions in California, Idaho, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Arizona, Nevada, Wyoming and Oregon, as well as those of the Long Valley Caldera geological province and the Yellowstone hotspot.

Volcanic fields[edit]

Some of the volcanic fields of the Basin and Range Province are within: Northwestern Nevada, the Modoc Plateau, Central Nevada, the Great Basin, Southwestern Nevada, the Mojave Desert, and the Long Valley Caldera region. Named ones include: Coso Volcanic Field, Mono Lake Volcanic Field, Marysvale Volcanic Field, San Juan volcanic field, Indian Peak, Central Colorado volcanic field, Jemez volcanic lineament, Mogollon-Datil volcanic field, Santa Rosa-Calico, and Boot Heel volcanic field.

Geological features[edit]

Many geological features in Western United States have a Northeastern orientation, the North American craton motion has the same orientation as well.[1] For example: the Trans-Challis fault zone, Idaho; the Snake River in Oregon; the Garlock Fault, California; the Colorado River in Utah; the Colorado Mineral Belt; Crater Flat-Reveille Range-Lunar Crater lineament, the Northwestern Nevada volcanic field; the San Juan caldera cluster, Colorado; the Socorro-Magdalena caldera cluster, New Mexico; Jemez volcanic lineament (Raton hotspot trail); and the Yellowstone hotspot trail. But the Yellowstone hotspot trail was modified through faults and extension.


Prior to the Eocene Epoch (55.8 ±0.2 to 33.9 ±0.1 Ma) the convergence rate of the Farallon and North American Plates was fast and the angle of subduction was shallow. During the Eocene the Farallon Plate subduction-associated compressive forces of the Laramide orogeny ended, plate interactions changed from orthogonal compression to oblique strike-slip, and volcanism in the Basin and Range Province flared up. It is suggested that this plate continued to be underthrust until about 19 Ma, at which time it was completely consumed and volcanic activity ceased, in part. Olivine basalt from the oceanic ridge erupted around 17 Ma and extension began.[2][3][4][5][6] The extension resulted in roughly north-south-trending faults, the Great Basin, the Walker trough, the Owens graben, and the Rio Grande rift, for instance.

List of large volume eruptions in the Basin and Range Province[edit]

The large volume eruptions in the Basin and Range Province include:

Large volume eruptions of the Southwestern Nevada volcanic field (SWNVF)
Caldera name State (volcanic field) age size
Black Mountain Caldera (18 km wide) Nevada (SWNVF) 7 Ma ±1 300 km3 (72 cu mi) of Thirsty Canyon Tuff.[8][24]
Timber Mountain caldera complex (30 x 25 km) Nevada (SWNVF) 11.45 Ma 900 km3 (216 cu mi) of Timber Mountain Tuff – Ammonia Tanks member.[8][34]
Timber Mountain caldera complex Nevada (SWNVF) 11.6 Ma 1,200 km3 (288 cu mi) of Timber Mountain Tuff – Rainer Mesa member.[8][34]
Paintbrush Caldera (20 km wide) Nevada (SWNVF) 12.7 Ma 1,000 km3 (240 cu mi) of Paintbrush Tuff – Topopah Spring member.[8][34]
Paintbrush Caldera Nevada (SWNVF) 12.8 Ma 1,200 km3 (288 cu mi) of Paintbrush Tuff – Tiva Canyon member[8][34]
Silent Canyon Caldera (20 x 16 km) Nevada (SWNVF) 13 Ma 200 km3 (48 cu mi).[8][24]
Crater Flat Group Nevada (SWNVF) 13.25 Ma 650 km3 (156 cu mi) of Belted Range Tuff[8]

List of Rupelian calderas[edit]

The Rupelian age/stage (Paleogene period/system, Oligocene epoch/series) spans the time between 33.9 ±0.1 Ma and 28.4 ±0.1 Ma (million years ago).


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Columbia River Basalt Province-sources[edit]

Peter W. Lipman – sources[edit]

  • Lipman, Peter W. (1969). "Alkalic and tholeiitic basaltic volcanism related to the Rio Grande Depression, Southern Colorado and Northern New Mexico". Geological Society of America Bulletin. 80 (7): 1343–1354. Bibcode:1969GSAB...80.1343L. doi:10.1130/0016-7606(1969)80[1343:aatbvr];2. 
  • Lipman, Peter W.; Prostka, H.J.; Christiansen, R.L. (1972). "Cenozoic volcanism and plate-tectonic evolution of the Western United States: I. Early and middle Cenozoic". Royal Society of London Philosophical Transactions ser. A. 271 (1213): 217–248. Bibcode:1972RSPTA.271..217L. doi:10.1098/rsta.1972.0008. JSTOR 74007. 
  • R. L. Christiansen & P. W. Lipman (1972). "Cenozoic Volcanism and Plate-Tectonic Evolution of the Western United States. II. Late Cenozoic". Royal Society of London Philosophical Transactions ser. A. 271 (1213): 249–284. Bibcode:1972RSPTA.271..249C. doi:10.1098/rsta.1972.0009. JSTOR 74008. 
  • Lipman, Peter W.; Steven, T.A.; Luedke, R.G.; Burbank, W.S. (1973). "Revised volcanic history of the San Juan, Uncompahgre, Silverton, and Lake City calderas in the western San Juan Mountains, Colorado". J. Res. U. S. Geol. Surv. 1: 627–642. 
  • Lipman, Peter W. (1975). "Evolution of the Platoro caldera complex and related volcanic rocks, southeastern San Juan Mountains, Colorado". USGS Professional Paper. 852: 1–128. 
  • Lipman, Peter W. (1976). "Caldera-collapse breccias in the western San Juan Mountains, Colorado". Geol. Soc. Am. Bull. 87 (10): 1397–1410. Bibcode:1976GSAB...87.1397L. doi:10.1130/0016-7606(1976)87<1397:cbitws>;2. 
  • Steven, T.A. & Lipman, Peter W. (1976). "Calderas of the San Juan volcanic field, southwestern Colorado". USGS Professional Paper. 958: 35. 
  • Lipman, Peter W. & Mehnert, H.H. (1979), "The Taos Plateau volcanic field, northern Rio Grande rift, New Mexico", in Riecker, R.E., Rio Grande rift – Tectonics and magmatism, Washington, D.C.: American Geophysical Union, pp. 289–311 
  • Sawyer, D.A. & Lipman, Peter W. (1983). "Silver Bell Mountains, Arizona- porphyry copper mineralization in a late Cretaceous caldera". Eos, Transactions, American Geophysical Union. 64: 874. 
  • Lipman, Peter W. (September 30, 1984). "The Roots of Ash Flow Calderas in Western North America: Windows Into the Tops of Granitic Batholiths" (PDF). Journal of Geophysical Research. 89 (B10): 8801–8841. Bibcode:1984JGR....89.8801L. doi:10.1029/JB089iB10p08801. Retrieved 2010-04-27. 
  • Lipman, Peter W.; Mehnert, H.H.; Naeser, C.W (1986). "Evolution of the Latir volcanic field, northern New Mexico, and its relation to the Rio Grande rift, as indicated by potassium-argon and fission track dating". Journal of Geophysical Research. 91: 6329–6345. Bibcode:1986JGR....91.6329L. doi:10.1029/JB091iB06p06329. 
  • Thompson, R.A.; Dungan, M.A.; Lipman, Peter W. (1986). "Multiple differentiation processes in early-rift calc-alkaline volcanics, northern Rio Grande rift, New Mexico". Journal of Geophysical Research. 91: 6046–6058. Bibcode:1986JGR....91.6046T. doi:10.1029/JB091iB06p06046. 
  • Lipman, Peter W. & Reed, J.C. Jr. (1989). "Geologic map of the Latir volcanic field and adjacent areas, northern New Mexico". U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Investigations Series. Map I-1907 (Scale 1:48000). 
  • Hon, K. & Lipman, Peter W. (1989), "Western San Juan caldera complex", in Lipman, Peter W., Excursion 16B: Oligocene-Miocene San Juan volcanic field, Colorado, 46, New Mexico Bureau of Mines and Mineral Resources Memoir, pp. 350–380 
  • Lipman, Peter W. & W. S. Baldridge (1990), "Taos, New Mexico", in C. A. Wood & J. Kienle, Volcanoes of North America, Cambridge University Press, pp. 290–292 
  • Lipman, Peter W. & Glazner, Allen F. (1991), "Introduction to middle Tertiary Cordilleran volcanism—Magma sources and relations to regional tectonics", Journal of Geophysical Research, 96 (B8): 13193–13199, Bibcode:1991JGR....9613193L, doi:10.1029/91JB01397 
  • Lipman, Peter W.; Dungan, M.A.; Brown, L.L.; Deino, A.L. (1996). "Recurrent eruption and subsidence at the Platoro Caldera complex, southeastern San Juan volcanic field, Colorado; new tales from old tuffs". Geol. Soc. Am. Bull. 108 (8): 1039–1055. Bibcode:1996GSAB..108.1039L. doi:10.1130/0016-7606(1996)108<1039:reasat>;2. 
  • Lipman, Peter W. (2000), "Calderas", in Sigurdsson, H., Encyclopedia of volcanoes, San Diego: Academic Press, pp. 643–662, ISBN 0-12-643140-X 
  • Olivier Bachmann; Michael A. Dungan; Peter W. Lipman (2002). "The Fish Canyon Magma Body, San Juan Volcanic Field, Colorado: Rejuvenation and Eruption of an Upper-Crustal Batholith". Journal of Petrology. 43 (8): 1469–1503. Bibcode:2002JPet...43.1469B. doi:10.1093/petrology/43.8.1469. Retrieved 2010-03-16. 
  • Lipman, Peter W. & Calvert, A. (2003). "Southward migration of mid-Tertiary volcanism: Relations in the Cochetopa Area, North-Central San Juan Mountains, Colorado". Geol. Soc. Am. Abstracts with Programs. 35: 14. 
  • Peter W. Lipman; William C. McIntosh (July 2008). "Eruptive and noneruptive calderas, northeastern San Juan Mountains, Colorado: Where did the ignimbrites come from?". Geological Society of America Bulletin. 120 (7–8): 771–795. Bibcode:2008GSAB..120..771L. doi:10.1130/B26330.1.