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Geologic field-trip guide of volcaniclastic sediments from snow- and ice-capped volcanoes—Mount St. Helens, Washington, and Mount Hood, Oregon

Scientific Investigations Report 2017-5022-F

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https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20175022F

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Abstract

This field guide for the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior (IAVCEI) Scientific Assembly 2017 focuses on volcaniclastic sediments from Mount St. Helens in Washington and Mount Hood in Oregon. The trip spends four days in the field and includes nine stops at each volcano. For completeness, this guidebook also includes sixteen optional stops in the Mount St. Helens area and three in the Mount Hood area. These two volcanoes provide excellent depositional records of the broad spectrum of volcanic hazards that involve the flow or fall of volcaniclastic particles. At the field-trip stops we will contrast and compare the different types of deposits—sediments that can be frustratingly difficult to distinguish from one another. Correct identification of deposit origin leads to a better understanding of hazards that can impact vulnerable communities at particular volcanoes.

During this four-day field trip, we will spend two days in the Mount St. Helens area and two days near Mount Hood. On the first day, we will visit debris-avalanche and lahar deposits in the Toutle River valley in Washington. The second day will focus on pyroclastic density current, pyroclastic-fall, lahar, and volcano-fluvial deposits in the Lewis River drainage system near Mount St. Helens. On the third day, we will visit hyaloclastites, glacial tills, and other diamicts in the Hood River and Sandy River basins near Mount Hood. The fourth and final day will focus on distal lahar and volcano-fluvial deposits downstream of Mount Hood.

What follows is an in-depth introduction to the deposits studied on this field trip. We provide criteria that are observable in the field to aid in differentiating between pyroclastic density current, pyroclastic-fall, debris-avalanche, lahar, water-flood, and glacial deposits. We also introduce the Holocene eruptive histories of Mount St. Helens and Mount Hood and discuss the processes responsible for deposit emplacement. Field-trip stops and features of interest along the route are described in detail in a road log that provides daily cumulative mileage.

Suggested Citation

Pierson, T.C., Siebert, L., Harpel, C.J., and Scott, K.M., 2018, Geologic field-trip guide of volcaniclastic sediments from snow- and ice-capped volcanoes—Mount St. Helens, Washington, and Mount Hood, Oregon: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2017–5022–F, 97 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20175022F.

ISSN: 2328-0328 (online)

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Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Criteria for Differentiating Volcaniclastic Deposits
  • Volcaniclastic Deposits of Mount St. Helens
  • Volcaniclastic Deposits of Mount Hood
  • Road Log and Description of Field Trip Stops
  • Acknowledgments
  • References Cited

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Geologic field-trip guide of volcaniclastic sediments from snow- and ice-capped volcanoes—Mount St. Helens, Washington, and Mount Hood, Oregon
Series title:
Scientific Investigations Report
Series number:
2017-5022
Chapter:
F
DOI:
10.3133/sir20175022F
Year Published:
2018
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Reston, VA
Contributing office(s):
Volcano Science Center
Description:
xi, 97 p.
Country:
United States
State:
Oregon, Washington
Other Geospatial:
Mount Hood, Mount St. Helens
Online Only (Y/N):
Y