Markagunt Plateau

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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 37.58°N
  • 112.67°W

  • 2840 m
    9315 ft

  • 327040
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

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A group of basaltic cinder cones and lava vents on the Markagunt Plateau east of Cedar Breaks National Monument in SW Utah has produced youthful, sparsely vegetated lava flows. Products of an older episode of volcanism producing trachytic, andesitic and rhyolitic lavas were succeeded by basaltic lavas of two different ages. Several lines of NE-SW-trending cinder cones occur within the volcanic field, with the youngest flows being located near Panguitch Lake on the north and Navajo Lake on the south. Navajo Lake formed when a thick, blocky flow from a nearby vent dammed Duck Creek. Young lava flows, many of which are fissure fed, have distinct margins and covered or diverted stream drainages, which have for the most part not been reestablished across the flows. The oldest trees on the youngest flows are about 900 years old (Gregory, 1949) and Southern Paiute legends note "smoking hills" and red-hot lava flows in the Panguitch Lake area, although it is not known if the lava flows are that young.

Summary of Holocene eruption dates and Volcanic Explosivity Indices (VEI).

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
[ 1050 (in or before) ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    

This compilation of synonyms and subsidiary features may not be comprehensive. Features are organized into four major categories: Cones, Craters, Domes, and Thermal Features. Synonyms of features appear indented below the primary name. In some cases additional feature type, elevation, or location details are provided.


Cones

Feature Name Feature Type Elevation Latitude Longitude
Asay Knoll Cone 2511 m 37° 33' 0" N 112° 34' 0" W
Bowers Knoll Cone 2604 m 37° 33' 0" N 112° 37' 0" W
Cooper Knoll Cone 2755 m 37° 43' 0" N 112° 37' 0" W
Henrie Knolls Cone 2821 m 37° 35' 0" N 112° 40' 0" W
Miller Knoll Cone 2759 m 37° 40' 0" N 112° 39' 0" W
Strawberry Knolls Cone 2580 m 37° 31' 0" N 112° 37' 0" W
Blocky lava flows from near Miller Knoll reach nearly to Panguitch Lake in the distance to the NE. Lava flows from the same vent traveled down Black Rock Valley to the SE. This extensive lava field is one of the youngest of the Markagunt Plateau volcanic field.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1996 (Smithsonian Institution).
Blocky unvegetated lava flows known as the Black Rock Desert extend from near Miller Knoll to the SE. These flows, which also extend NE to near Panguitch Lake, are among the youngest features of the Markagunt Plateau volcanic field. This is one of several young volcanic fields in SW Utah.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1996 (Smithsonian Institution).
The thick blocky lava flow in the background near Panguitch Lake is the northern lobe of a voluminous flow that originated near Miller Knoll. This flow is only one of several very youthful flows scattered over the Markagunt Plateau volcanic field of SW Utah.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1996 (Smithsonian Institution)
A group of basaltic cinder cones and lava vents on the Markagunt Plateau east of Cedar Breaks National Monument has produced youthful, sparsely vegetated lava flows. Several lines of NE-SW-trending cinder cones are present within the volcanic field, with the youngest flows occurring near Panguitch Lake on the north and Navajo Lake on the south. Navajo Lake (upper right) formed when a thick, blocky flow from a nearby vent dammed Duck Creek. The oldest trees on the youngest flows are about 900 years old.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1996 (Smithsonian Institution)
This unnamed cinder cone in the Sage Valley SE of Cedar Breaks National Monument was the source of one of the youngest lava flows in the Markagunt Plateau volcanic field in SW Utah. Extensive blocky lava flows cover broad areas near Navajo and Panguitch lakes.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1996 (Smithsonian Institution).

The following references have all been used during the compilation of data for this volcano, it is not a comprehensive bibliography. Discussion of another volcano or eruption (sometimes far from the one that is the subject of the manuscript) may produce a citation that is not at all apparent from the title.

Biek R F, Rowley P D, Anderson J J, Maldonado F, Moore D W, Eaton J G, Hereford R, Matyjasik B, 2012. Interim geologic map of the Panguitch 30 min x 60 min quadrangle, Garfield, Iron, and Kane counties, Utah. Utah Geol Surv Open-File Rep, 599, 3 plates, 1:65,000 scale, 127 p text).

Gregory H E, 1949. Geologic and geographic reconnaissance of Eastern Markagunt Plateau, Utah. Geol Soc Amer Bull, 60: 969-998.

Hatfield S C, Rowley P D, Sable E G, Maxwell D J, Cox B V, McKell M D, Kiel D E, 2003. Geology of Cedar Breaks National Monument, Utah. In: Sprinkel D A, Chidsey T C Jr, Anderson P B (eds) {Geology of Utah's Parks and Monuments}, Utah Geol Assoc Publ, 28: 139-154.

Johnsen R L, Smith I E, Biek R F, 2010. Subalkaline volcanism in the Black Rock Desert and Markagunt Plateau volcanic fields of south-central Utah. In: Carney S M, Tabet D E, Johnson C L (eds), Geology of South-Central Utah {Utah Geol Assoc Pub} 39: 109-150.

Moore D W, Nealey L D, Rowley P D, Harfield S C, Maxwell D J, Mitchell E, 2004. Geologic map of the Navajo Lake quadrangle, Kane and Iron Counties, Utah. Utah Geol Surv, map 199, 2 plates, 1:24,000 scale.

Smith R L, Shaw H R, 1975. Igneous-related geothermal systems. U S Geol Surv Circ, 726: 58-83.

Volcano Types

Volcanic field

Tectonic Setting

Rift zone
Continental crust (> 25 km)

Rock Types

Major
Basalt / Picro-Basalt
Andesite / Basaltic Andesite
Trachyte / Trachyandesite
Minor
Rhyolite

Population

Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km
970
970
1,887
186,184

Affiliated Databases

Large Eruptions of Markagunt Plateau Information about large Quaternary eruptions (VEI >= 4) is cataloged in the Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions (LaMEVE) database of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).
WOVOdat WOVOdat is a database of volcanic unrest; instrumentally and visually recorded changes in seismicity, ground deformation, gas emission, and other parameters from their normal baselines. It is sponsored by the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) and presently hosted at the Earth Observatory of Singapore.
EarthChem EarthChem develops and maintains databases, software, and services that support the preservation, discovery, access and analysis of geochemical data, and facilitate their integration with the broad array of other available earth science parameters. EarthChem is operated by a joint team of disciplinary scientists, data scientists, data managers and information technology developers who are part of the NSF-funded data facility Integrated Earth Data Applications (IEDA). IEDA is a collaborative effort of EarthChem and the Marine Geoscience Data System (MGDS).
Smithsonian Collections Search the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences collections database. Go to the "Search Rocks and Ores" tab and use the Volcano Name drop-down to find samples.