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Reinterpretation of a voluminous regional ash-flow sheet (Masonic Park Tuff) as two separate tuff sheets of similar phenocryst-rich dacite erupted from separate source calderas has important implications for evolution of the multicyclic Platoro caldera complex and for caldera-forming processes generally. Masonic Park Tuff in central parts of the San Juan field, including the type area, was erupted from a concealed source at 28.6 Ma, but widespread tuff previously mapped as Masonic Park Tuff in the southeastern San Juan Mountains is the product of the youngest large-volume eruption of the Platoro caldera complex at 28.4 Ma. This large unit, newly named the "Chiquito Peak Tuff," is the last-erupted tuff of the Treasure...
Ore deposits in the western San Juan Mountains formed intermittently in middle to late Tertiary time, from about 30 to 10 m.y. ago, during essentially the same span as that of associated igneous activity, as indicated by 31 new K-Ar and fission-track ages. Mineralization occurred recurrently during the waning stages of evolution of several precaldera central volcanoes and also after formation of the Uncompahgre, San Juan, Silverton, and Lake City calderas. The richest ore deposits are associated with structures of the Silverton caldera, but they were emplaced 5 to 15 m.y. after the caldera formed. This mineralization appears genetically unrelated to evolution of the caldera and its associated magmatic system but...
Determining the precise age of ore deposition in many mining districts has been an elusive geochronologic problem. Paleontologic and isotopic determination of the ages of pre- and postore units commonly provide only broad limits, and in many deposits suitable materials for dating are unavailable. Especially promising is the possibility of direct radiometric dating of gangue and alteration minerals such as alunite, adularia, and coarse sericite, but in most previous attempts independent age control on the host rock and postore rocks has been lacking. However, a study on alunite (Silberman and Ashley, 1970) from the Goldfield district, Nevada, has demonstrated that K-Ar ages from hypogenea lunite can give reliable...
Locally, voluminous andesitic volcanism both preceded and followed large eruptions of silicic ash-flow tuff from many calderas in the San Juan volcanic field. The most voluminous post-collapse lava suite of the central San Juan caldera cluster is the 28 Ma Huerto Andesite, a diverse assemblage erupted from at least 5-6 volcanic centres that were active around the southern margins of the La Garita caldera shortly after eruption of the Fish Canyon Tuff. These andesitic centres are inferred, in part, to represent eruptions of magma that ponded and differentiated within the crust below the La Garita caldera, thereby providing the thermal energy necessary for rejuvenation and remobilization of the Fish Canyon magma body....
Palaeomagnetic results have been obtained from thirty sites in intrusive and extrusive rocks of Oligocene age from the San Juan Mountains, south-western Colorado. All specimens from each site were subjected to af demagnetization, and the reliability of each site determined. Twenty-three sites gave reliable results. Because five sites from the thick intracaldera part of the La Jara Canyon Member of the Treasure Mountain Tuff appear to have become magnetized during the same small interval of geological time, their results were combined and their mean pole and direction used in the final calculations. The eighteen remaining reliable sites yielded an average Oligocene palaeomagnetic pole at 85�6� N and 298�0� E (?p=...