Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-56f9d74cfd-5k9ck Total loading time: 0.408 Render date: 2022-06-26T05:21:01.484Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true }

Geochemical Evidence for an Eolian Sand Dam across the North and South Platte Rivers in Nebraska

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

Daniel R. Muhs
Affiliation:
United States Geological Survey, MS 980, Box 25046, Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225
James B. Swinehart
Affiliation:
Conservation and Survey Division, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska 68588
David B. Loope
Affiliation:
Department of Geosciences, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska 68588
Josh Been
Affiliation:
United States Geological Survey, MS 980, Box 25046, Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225
Shannon A. Mahan
Affiliation:
United States Geological Survey, MS 980, Box 25046, Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225
Charles A. Bush
Affiliation:
United States Geological Survey, MS 980, Box 25046, Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225

Abstract

Geochemical and geomorphic data from dune fields in southwestern Nebraska provide new evidence that the Nebraska Sand Hills once migrated across the North and South Platte rivers and dammed the largest tributary system to the Missouri River. The Lincoln County and Imperial dune fields, which lie downwind of the South Platte River, have compositions intermediate between the Nebraska Sand Hills (quartz-rich) and northeastern Colorado dunes (K-feldspar-rich). The most likely explanation for the intermediate composition is that the Lincoln County and Imperial dunes are derived in part from the Nebraska Sand Hills and in part from the South Platte River. The only mechanism by which the Nebraska Sand Hills could have migrated this far south is by complete infilling of what were probably perennially dry North Platte and South Platte river valleys. Such a series of events would have required an extended drought, both for activation of eolian sand and decreased discharges in the Platte River system. A nearby major tributary of the North Platte River is postulated to have been blocked by eolian sand about 12,000 14C yr B.P. We propose that an eolian sand dam across the Plattes was constructed at about this same time.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
University of Washington

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Ahlbrandt, T. S, Fryberger, S. G., (1980). Eolian Deposits in the Nebraska Sand Hills. U.S.. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1120-A.Google Scholar
Ahlbrandt, T.S., Swinehart, J.B., Maroney, D.G., (1983). The dynamic Holocene dune fields of the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain basins, U.S.A. Brookfield, M.E., Ahlbrandt, T.S., Eolian Sediments and Processes Elsevier, New York.379406.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Aleinikoff, J.N., Muhs, D.R., Walter, M., Naeser, C.W., Swinehart, J.B., (1995). Provenances of Holocene eolian sand, central Great Plains: U–Pb & fission track ages of detrital zircons and Pb isotopic compositions of K-feldspar. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs 27, 3334.Google Scholar
Arbogast, A.F., (1996). Stratigraphic evidence for late-Holocene aeolian sand mobilization and soil formation in south-central Kansas, U.S.A. Journal of Arid Environments 34, 403414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Breed, C.S., Fryberger, S.C., Andrews, S., McCauley, C., Lennartz, F., Gebel, D., Horstman, K., (1979). Regional studies of sand seas using Landsat (ERTS) imagery. McKee, E.D., A Study of Global Sand Seas 305397.Google Scholar
Diffendal, R.F. Jr., (1994). Geomorphic and structural features of the Alliance 1° × 2° quadrangle, western Nebraska, discernible from synthetic-aperture radar imagery and digital shaded-relief maps. University of Wyoming Contributions to Geology 30, 137147.Google Scholar
Diffendal, R. F. Jr, Leite, M. B., (1989). Late Quaternary Alluvial and Lacustrine Fills, Keith and Garden Counties, Nebraska—The Conundrum Reconsidered.. TER-QUA 1989 Abstracts, Colorado State University, .Google Scholar
Fryberger, S.G., Dean, G., (1979). Dune forms and wind regime. McKee, E.D., A Study of Global Sand Seas 137169.Google Scholar
Grove, A.T., Warren, A., (1968). Quaternary landforms and climate on the south side of the Sahara. Geographical Journal 134, 194208.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hallberg, G.R., (1979). Wind-aligned drainage in loess in Iowa. Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science 86, 49.Google Scholar
Haynes, C.V., (1980). Geochronology of Wadi Tushka: Lost tributary of the Nile. Science 210, 6871.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Holliday, V.T., (1995). Late Quaternary stratigraphy of the Southern High Plains. Johnson, E., Ancient Peoples and Landscapes Museum of Texas Tech University, Lubbock.289313.Google Scholar
Holliday, V. T., (1995b). ), Stratigraphy and Paleoenvironments of Late Quaternary Valley Fills on the Southern High Plains.. Geological Society of America Memoir 186.Google Scholar
Holliday, V.T., (1997). Paleoindian Geoarchaeology of the Southern High Plains. University of Texas Press, Austin.Google Scholar
Leite, M.B., Diffendal, R.F. Jr., (1988). Lacustrine deposits in tributary valleys of the North Platte River: A Quaternary conundrum in western Nebraska. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs 20, A348.Google Scholar
Loope, D.B., Swinehart, J.B., Mason, J.P., (1995). Dune-dammed paleovalleys of the Nebraska Sand Hills: Intrinsic versus climatic controls on the accumulation of lake and marsh sediments. Geological Society of America Bulletin 107, 396406.2.3.CO;2>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Madole, R.F., (1994). Stratigraphic evidence of desertification in the west-central Great Plains within the past 1000 yr. Geology 22, 483486.2.3.CO;2>CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Madole, R.F., (1995). Spatial and temporal patterns of late Quaternary eolian deposition, eastern Colorado, U.S.A. Quaternary Science Reviews 14, 155177.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mason, J.P., Swinehart, J.B., Loope, D.B., (1997). Holocene history of lacustrine and marsh sediments in a dune-blocked drainage, Southwestern Nebraska Sand Hills, U.S.A. Journal of Paleolimnology 17, 6783.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McCauley, J.F., Schaber, G.G., Breed, C.S., Grolier, M.J., Haynes, C.V., Issawi, B., Elachi, C., Blom, R., (1982). Subsurface valleys and geoarchaeology of the eastern Sahara revealed by shuttle radar. Science 218, 10041020.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Muhs, D.R., Holliday, V.T., (1995). Evidence of active dune sand on the Great Plains in the 19th century from accounts of early explorers. Quaternary Research 43, 198208.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Muhs, D.R., Bettis, E.A. III, (1998). A comparison of loess-derived and climate model-derived paleowinds for midcontinental North America during the last glacial maximum. Busacca, A.J., Dust Aerosols, Loess Soils and Global Change 111114.Google Scholar
Muhs, D.R., Bush, C.A., Cowherd, S.D., Mahan, S., (1995). Geomorphic and geochemical evidence for the source of sand in the Algodones dunes, Colorado Desert, southeastern California. Tchakerian, V.P., Desert Aeolian Processes Chapman & Hall, London.3774.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Muhs, D.R., Stafford, T.W. Jr., Cowherd, S.D., Mahan, S.A., Kihl, R., Maat, P.B., Bush, C.A., Nehring, J., (1996). Origin of the late Quaternary dune fields of northeastern Colorado. Geomorphology 17, 129149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Muhs, D.R., Stafford, T.W. Jr., Swinehart, J.B., Cowherd, S.D., Mahan, S.A., Bush, C.A., Madole, R.F., Maat, P.B., (1997). Late Holocene eolian activity in the mineralogically mature Nebraska Sand Hills. Quaternary Research 48, 162176.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Muhs, D.R., Stafford, T.W. Jr., Been, J., Mahan, S., Burdett, J., Skipp, G., Rowland, Z.M., (1997). Late Holocene eolian sand deposition in the Minot dune field, North Dakota. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 34, 14421459.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pye, K., Tsoar, H., (1990). Aeolian Sand and Sand Dunes. Unwin Hyman, London.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Soil Conservation Service and Conservation and Survey DivisionUniversity of Nebraska, (1978). General Soil Map of the McCook Area, Nebraska.. Map published jointly by the Soil Conservation Service and Conservation and Survey Division, University of Nebraska, . Scale, 1:250,000.Google Scholar
Stokes, S., Swinehart, J.B., (1997). Middle- and late-Holocene dune reactivation in the Nebraska Sand Hills, USA. The Holocene 7, 263272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sweeney, M.R., Swinehart, J.B., Loope, D.B., (1998). Testing the hypothesis for latest Wisconsin blockage of streams at the west margin of the Nebraska Sand Hills (abs.). Proceedings of the Nebraska Academy of Sciences, 118th Annual Meeting, Lincoln, NE p. 50.Google Scholar
Swinehart, J.B., (1990). Wind-blown deposits. Bleed, A., Flowerday, C., An Atlas of the Sand Hills University of Nebraska, Lincoln.4356.Google Scholar
Swinehart, J.B., Diffendal, R.F. Jr., (1990). Geology of the pre-dune strata. Bleed, A., Flowerday, C., An Atlas of the Sand Hills University of Nebraska, Lincoln.2942.Google Scholar
Swinehart, J.B., Loope, D.B., (1992). A giant dune-dammed lake on the North Platte River, Nebraska. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs 24, A51.Google Scholar
Swinehart, J.B., Loope, D., Ponte, M., Mason, J., Helland, P., Kim, N., (1994). Paleoenvironments of the Nebraska Sand Hills. University of Nebraska, Lincoln.Google Scholar
Swinehart, J. B, Dreeszen, V. H, Richmond, G. M, Tipton, M. J, Bretz, R, Steece, F. V, Hallberg, G. R, Goebel, J. E., (1994b). ), Quaternary Geologic Map of the Platte River 4° × 6° Quadrangle, United States. U.S.. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Investigations Series Map I-1420 (NK-14) . Scale 1:1,000,000.Google Scholar
Teller, J.T., Lancaster, N., (1986). Lacustrine sediments at Narabeb in the central Namib Desert, Namibia. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 56, 177195.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Williams, G. P., (1978). The Case of the Shrinking Channels—The North Platte and Platte Rivers in Nebraska. U.S.. Geological Survey Circular 781.Google Scholar
Wolfe, S.A., Huntley, D.J., Ollerhead, J., (1995). Recent and late Holocene sand dune activity in southwestern Saskatchewan. Current Research 1995B, Geological Survey of Canada 131140.Google Scholar
32
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Geochemical Evidence for an Eolian Sand Dam across the North and South Platte Rivers in Nebraska
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Geochemical Evidence for an Eolian Sand Dam across the North and South Platte Rivers in Nebraska
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Geochemical Evidence for an Eolian Sand Dam across the North and South Platte Rivers in Nebraska
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *