The Gulf of Santa Catalina is part of the California Continental Borderand, an active transform margin characterized by narrow shelves, steep slopes, and deep closed basin separated by shallow banks and islands. The Gulf of Santa Catalina extend from Point Fermin south to San Diego. It is bounded on the west by prominent bedrock ridges, 30 to 45 km offshore, compromising Santa Catalina Island and Thirtymile Bank. The predominant structural grain within the Gulf of Santa Catalina trends northwesterly. Two major fault zones bound a relatively undeformed structural block, the Catalina block (Clarke and others, 1983). The Newport-Inglewood-Rose Canyon Fault Zone forms the northeast boundary of the Catalina block, and the Palos Verdes Hills-Coronafo Bank Fault Zone forms the southwest boundary (Figure 1). Both of these fault zones are characterized by discontinuous, right-stepping en echelon faults and associated folds. Major structural and physiographic features within and bounding the Catalina block are compatible with wrench-style tectonism (Harding, 1973; Wilcox and others, 1973; Nardin and Henyey, 1978). The distribution of seismicity, along with geophysical evidence showing local displacement of sea floor and Holocene deposits, indicate that Newport-Inglewood, Palos Verdes Hills, and subsidiary faults are active (Clarke and others, 1983). The distribution of Quaternary sediments (Pleistocene and Holocene) off the coast of southern California provides insight into recent sedimentation patterns and recency of faulting and tectonic deformation. This report focuses on the distribution of Quaternary sediments, particularly in the shelf and upper slop areas, the sources of detrial sediment, and depositional environments of Holocene as well as relict deposits.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Isopach map showing Quaternary deposits in the Gulf of Santa Catalina area, California
Miscellaneous Field Studies Map
U.S. Geological Survey
2 Plates: 44.83 x 30.94 inches and 49.99 x 31.91 inches