Isostatic residual gravity anomalies in the southern Cascade Range of northern California and southern Oregon are spatially correlated with broad zones of Quaternary magmatism as reflected by the total volume of Quaternary volcanic products, the distribution of Quaternary vents, and the anomalously low teleseismic P wave velocities in the upper 30 km of crust. The orientation of Quaternary faults also appears to be related to gravity anomalies and volcanism in this area, trending generally north-south within the magmatic regions and northwest-southeast as they enter the neighboring amagmatic zones to the north and south. The relationship between gravity anomalies, vent density, and fault orientations may indicate in a broad sense the strength of the middle and upper crust. The southern Cascade Range occupies a transition zone where horizontal stress is transferred from the northwest-southeast dextral shear of the Walker Lane belt to the east-west extension characteristic of the Cascade arc in central Oregon. Faulting along north-south strikes in the volcanically active areas indicates the east-west extensional stresses in thermally weakened crust, whereas northwest faulting between the volcanically active areas reflects the northwest trending, right lateral shear strain of the Walker Lane belt. The segmentation of the arc reflected in Quaternary magmatism may be caused by differential extension behind crustal blocks of the forearc rotating clockwise with respect to North America. In this view the volcanic centers at Mount Shasta, Medicine Lake volcano, and Lassen Peak in northern California are situated along the southern parts of the trailing edges of two distinct segments of the forearc where additional extension is implied by their differential clockwise rotation. U.S. copyright. Published in 1997 by the American Geophysical Union.
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Gravity anomalies, Quaternary vents, and Quaternary faults in the southern Cascade Range, Oregon and California: Implications for arc and backarc evolution