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Sequence Stratigraphy of the Late Pennsylvanian to Early Permian Honaker Trail and

Elephant Canyon Strata, Paradox Basin, Utah and Colorado


Donald L. Rasmussen

Paradox Basin Data, Denver, CO

Dalton L. Rasmussen

Platte River Associates Inc, Boulder, CO


Morrowan through Wolfcampian strata in the Paradox Basin have 71 or more fourth-order sequences. Almost every sequence contains lowstand evaporites and highstand carbonates, including sequences in the Honaker Trail and Elephant Canyon strata in the northern Paradox Basin previously considered lacking sufficient lateral continuity of stratigraphic entities to allow long distance correlations and subdivision into sequences. There are complex interrelationships among lowstand and highstand systems tracts with intertonguing Cutler, Organ Rock and Halgaito non-marine facies and White Rim and Cedar Mesa eolian and coastal plain facies. These are complicated by rapid facies changes, lowstand unconformites, mobilization of underlying salt by overloading, and shrinking and shifting marine depocenters in Late Pennsylvanian and Early Permian time. Using sequence stratigraphic concepts, nomenclature applied to Pennsylvanian and Permian strata in the greater Paradox Basin area can be simplified through redefinition and/or abandonment of previous confusing terminology.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90004©2002 AAPG Rocky Mountain Section, Laramie, Wyoming