New mapping along the Big Pine fault trend in southern California indicates that this structural alignment is actually three separate faults, which exhibit different geometries, slip histories, and senses of offset since Miocene time. The easternmost fault, along the north side of Lockwood Valley, exhibits left-lateral reverse Quaternary displacement but was a north dipping normal fault in late Oligocene to early Miocene time. The eastern Big Pine fault that bounds the southern edge of the Cuyama Badlands is a south dipping reverse fault that is continuous with the San Guillermo fault. The western segment of the Big Pine fault trend is a north dipping thrust fault continuous with the Pine Mountain fault and delineates the northern boundary of the rotated western Transverse Ranges terrane. This redefinition of the Big Pine fault differs greatly from the previous interpretation and significantly alters regional tectonic models and seismic risk estimates. The outcome of this study also demonstrates that basic geologic mapping is still needed to support the development of geologic models. Copyright 2005 by the American Geophysical Union.
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Taking apart the Big Pine fault: Redefining a major structural feature in southern California