This article is from
Journal of Creation 32(1):92–99, April 2018

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The meaning of unconformities

by and

An important distinction between diluvial and uniformitarian geology is their contrary interpretive approach to unconformities. Uniformitarian geology has long emphasized unconformities as repositories of all the time that cannot reasonably be attributed to the strata. But that interpretive framework would be unworkable if most unconformities formed during the Flood. Diluvial geology must focus on the physical interplay of hydraulics, tectonics, and sedimentology to investigate the formation of erosional surfaces of all scales.


Dramatic events, like Archimedes’ bathtub and Newton’s apple tree, persist across the landscape of science. For geologists, that moment was the 1788 boating expedition of Hutton, Playfair, and Hall off Siccar Point, Scotland. This was when Playfair saw an angular unconformity, thinking he ‘gazed into the abyss of time’. Unconformities of much greater extent and duration, like the Great Unconformity of North America (figure 1), have since been discovered, but Siccar Point remains a Mecca for geology students. Though quite readily explainable in a diluvial framework,1 its only significance to the uniformitarian faithful is as an icon of uniformitarian deep time:

fig-1-c
Figure 1. Hutton’s unconformity at Siccar Point (A), though much smaller than the Great Unconformity in North America (B), has an unmatched emotive value in promoting deep time.
“The idea of time as an abyss was borrowed from Buffon, but it encapsulates what Playfair’s generation (and others since) found most striking about Hutton’s system [emphasis added].”2

Playfair’s interpretation firmly steered the understanding of unconformities away from any mechanical investigation of their formation and towards a role as repositories of deep time. That framework has remained unchanged, despite modern pressures from sequence stratigraphy and neocatastrophism. But biblical history demands that most unconformities formed rapidly.

Unconformities: two approaches

Diluvialists and uniformitarians can agree that unconformities represent erosional or non-depositional processes over time between the emplacement of two adjacent rock units distinct in lithology, geometry, or biota. But how those factors (time and process) are weighted is quite different. Uniformitarian geology uses the ‘stratigraphic approach’—focusing primarily on the duration of time represented by an unconformity.3 The contrary view— the ‘dynamic approach’—focuses on the mechanics of deposition and erosion. The stratigraphic approach has become synonymous with uniformitarian geology because that framework for understanding the sedimentary record demands vast amounts of time not seen in the actual strata.4 From Barrell5 to Ager,6 geologists have recognized that the actual rocks represent only a small fraction of deep time;4 thus, unconformities buffer forensic uncertainty by providing the illusion that we can see the missing time.

Stratigraphic approach embedded in definition

The temporal bias of the stratigraphic approach is clear even in the dictionary definition of ‘unconformity’. Neuendorf et al. define an unconformity as:

“(a) A substantial break or gap in the geologic record where a rock unit is overlain by another that is not next in stratigraphic succession, such as an interruption in the continuity of a depositional sequence of sedimentary rocks or a break between eroded igneous rocks and younger sedimentary strata. It results from a change that caused deposition to cease for a considerable span of time, and it normally implies uplift and erosion with loss of the previously-formed record [emphasis added].”7

This ‘substantial break’ or ‘gap’ in the passage of time clearly infers deep time, which has been the fundamental assumption of geology since the late 1700s.2 Geologists ‘see’ an interruption in the stratigraphic succession in an unconformity, which assumes much time because they assume uniformitarianism and its timescale. This emphasis is obvious in “the considerable span of time” in the second sentence. In a sense, the definition is circular: an unconformity is defined by reference to deep time, and then presented as evidence of the lapse of a ‘considerable span’. The second definition of ‘unconformity’ relates it to surrounding strata:

“(b) The structural relationship between rock strata in contact, characterized by a lack of continuity in deposition, and corresponding to a period of nondeposition, weathering, or esp. erosion (either subaerial or subaqueous) prior to the deposition of the younger beds, and often (but not always) marked by absence of parallelism between the strata; strictly, the relationship where the younger overlying stratum does not ‘conform’ to the dip and strike of the older underlying rocks, as shown specif. by an angular unconformity.”
Types-of-unconformities
Figure 2. Types of unconformities: (A) Angular unconformities are erosional surfaces between strata which exhibit different strikes and dips above and below the unconformity; (B) disconformities are erosional surfaces between distinct yet parallel sedimentary strata; (C) paraconformities represent the assumed absence of time, but without any physically significant surface or angle between the strata; (D) nonconformities are surfaces separating sedimentary layers above from igneous or metamorphic rocks below.

This definition focuses on tangible causes, but only with causal mechanisms consistent with deep time. A period of nondeposition or erosion brings to mind a stately sea-level change and its erosion. Weathering, uplift, and erosion are thought to be slow processes. Thus, the physical causes for strata failing to maintain consistent strike and dip are put in the context of deep time. The third definition notes specific types of unconformities (figure 2):

“(c) surface of unconformity. Common types of unconformities recognized in U.S.: nonconformity; angular unconformity; disconformity; paraconformity. Since the essential feature of an unconformity, as understood in Great Britain, is structural discordance rather than a time gap, the British do not recognize disconformity and paraconformity as unconformities.”7

Stratigraphic approach built into geology

Miall8 recounts the work of Blackwelder,9 Grabau,10 and Barrell5 in the early 20th century, who refined the stratigraphic approach, discussing theoretical reasons for the uniformitarian distribution of accommodation space, preservation, and unconformity-bounded sequences. Levorson11 described the stratigraphy of central North America as natural groupings of strata between unconformities. Wheeler12 developed a chronostratigraphic depiction of strata that made the stratigraphic approach normative in geological cross-sections. This all anticipated the work of Larry Sloss13 in defining continent-scale megasequences.14

It is worth noting the influence of Wheeler charts, which use time as the Y axis, masking the physical geometry of strata and erosion. A wide gap on a Wheeler plot means a long span of time, even if physical evidence does not show it. Such a stratigraphic presentation carries a subliminal bias towards deep time:

“Wheeler (1958) developed the concept of the chronostratigraphic cross-section, in which the vertical dimension in a stratigraphic cross-section is drawn with a time scale instead of a thickness scale. … In this way, time gaps (unconformities) become readily apparent, and the nature of time correlation may be accurately indicated. Such diagrams have come to be termed ‘Wheeler plots’ [emphasis added].”15
Two-stratigraphic-sections-Iowa-lge
Figure 3. Two stratigraphic sections in Iowa, based on COSUNA charts. Contrast the visual impact of the presentation by thickness and lithology (left) and the stratigraphic interpretation (right). Note the vast amount of time pigeonholed into major unconformities. Note the 10x vertical scale change in the left Webster County column.17 Thicknesses are averages of ranges provided by COSUNA charts, and thus are approximations for any given location.

Wheeler charts replace a primary field property—thickness—with an imaginary ‘thickness’ of time. In other words, on a Wheeler chart, a 5-m-thick unit may appear identical to a 5,000-m-thick unit, because they are interpreted as occupying the same amount of time. This accustoms people to think they see deep time in addition to strata. The COSUNA charts, published by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists,16 use the Wheeler method, illustrating the visual distortion when compared to a plot using physical geometry (figure 3).

In the latter half of the 20th century, two developments affected our understanding of unconformities. First, sequence stratigraphy18 opened the door to a dynamic approach, but uniformitarianism was so ingrained that little came of it. But unconformities per se were re-emphasized on a variety of scales, up to global eustatic curves. Creationist views were published in the 1990s,19 though research today is focused on large-scale sequences.20 Second, the rise of neocatastrophism forced geologists to confront the amount of time actually residing in unconformities. Ager6 was famous for his comments that the record was comprised mostly of gaps. Saddler21 noted that accumulation rates diminish with time. Bailey and Smith22 noted the ubiquity of unconformities at all scales, and the corollary that most stratigraphic charts vastly overstate the actual time in the rocks. Miall responded with a defense of uniformitarianism,23 and proposed that the wide variation in the scale of sedimentary events provides a representative record.

Dynamic approach of Flood geology

Uniformitarian geology favours the stratigraphic approach, but diluvial geology is restricted to one approach—the dynamic. How do these fundamentally distinct approaches to unconformities affect stratigraphic and historical interpretation?

Quantity of time minimal. Uniformitarians grant that a single waveform can form in a matter of seconds, but assert that increasing physical scale demands an increasing temporal scale—up to 107–108 years for continental scale sequence boundaries.23 We reject that link between temporal and physical scale; the Flood was an event of great energy, in both extent and intensity. Even large sequence boundaries may have formed in hours; the major constraint being the upper boundaries of the motion of large volumes of water.

Unconformities reflect changes in flow. If most of the rock record was produced in a year, then unconformities mark rapid tectonic and hydrodynamic changes. Changes in current direction, velocity, and depth can produce rapid changes in erosion and sedimentation, as seen on a small scale in modern floods. Extrapolation to larger scales is consistent with both actualism and the Flood.

Global signatures. Large unconformities are not necessarily time boundaries correlated to a global timescale, but are more likely signatures of hydraulic and tectonic events that cannot be synchronized to any fine scale during the Flood. Thus, the criteria for correlating unconformities must be reassessed. Modern correlation methods—fossils, astronomical cycles, etc.—are largely irrelevant to diluvialism.

Unconformities keyed to events. Inundation was rapid, but was complete within 150 days. During that time, interactions between flowing water and topography produced distinct local to regional signatures, sometimes in minutes to hours. The hydraulic environment is therefore more significant than time.

Completeness of record. If the Flood was a global one-year event, and if unconformities represent hydrodynamic and tectonic shifts of hours to days, then the Flood record (including unconformities) is much more complete in the domain of time than the uniformitarian stratigraphic record. Thus, quantifiable sedimentological analysis would also carry more historical certainty.

Fossil record result of transport, burial, and preservation. In marked contrast to uniformitarian stratigraphy, fossils rarely represent in situ snapshots of ancient environments. Thus, while there is likely a recognizable pattern to fossil burial during the Flood in any given location, using biostratigraphy to control the timing of unconformities is based on faulty assumptions.

Exciting research opportunity. Uniformitarian geologists have been blinded to rapid, large-scale sedimentation by their obsession with the time-stratigraphic importance of unconformities. This is an opportunity for diluvial research today, which a few have begun to seize.24–30 Research into hydrodynamic causes of large currents and waves also has the inherent advantage of a closer link to the physics of fluid flow and sedimentation.

Discussion

The stratigraphic approach interprets unconformities primarily by the duration of time represented by the absence of and/or erosional truncation of strata. While stratigraphers also address the geographic scale and environmental setting, uniformitarianism and deep time still control interpretation. Otherwise, it would not have taken decades for the overwhelming sedimentological and geomorphic evidence to convince geologists of the historicity of the Lake Missoula Flood.31,32 A dynamic approach would make hydrodynamic and tectonic setting the primary focus, considering water moving at scales not seen today as the most likely cause of unconformities.

Uniformitarian geology uses stratigraphic analysis to posit nebulous low-energy processes acting over long periods of time. Sedimentological analysis offers a more robust look in its ability to quantify current velocity, depth, and channel size. For example, the transport of boulders demands large, fast currents. Oard33 used erosional remnants, coal rank, and the volume of coastal plain sediments to estimate the volume of erosion in the Appalachians.

Unconformities and stratigraphic completeness

Unconformities as erosional surfaces do not directly yield information about the duration of time they represent. That must be inferred stratigraphically. But such an inference assumes a valid record. If there is not one, then confidence decreases. The extent to which unconformities or ‘gaps’ permeate the strata correlates to uncertainty in that record. Miall noted:

“‘Only one-sixth of time is recorded’ by sediments (Barrell, 1917, p. 797). This demonstration of the significance of missing time in the geological record has largely been ignored until recently. Modern stratigraphic charts show the major, recognized breaks, based on paleontological or structural data, although commonly these charts are drawn using an arbitrary and variable scale for the time axis, which under-represents the significance of missing time. The pervasive nature of minor breaks, and the generally fragmentary nature of the sedimentary record is typically not part of the description or interpretation of stratigraphic sections.”15
Flood-transgression
Figure 4. Cross-section of large region during Flood transgression from left to right showing how topography would cause different processes at the same time in a transgressing marine front (breaks inserted to shorten geographic scale). Time 1 = erosion (E) at higher elevations (B and C), while transgressive deposits (T) cover Elevation A. Time 2 = erosion at Elevation C, while transgressive deposits move to (B) and deeper marine deposits (M) cover the transgressive deposits at Elevation A. Time 3 = transgressive deposits cover Elevation C, at the same time as deep marine facies (DM) are deposited at A. The resulting record would show a large erosion surface covered by sedimentary units, T, M, and DM, but none are synchronous.37

Bailey and Smith introduced a quantitative method of evaluating completeness using gamma ray logs.34 They showed a statistically significant correlation between the thickness of layers and the frequency of occurrence and that unconformities occur at every scale. Reed noted:

“Bailey and Smith demonstrate that the application of statistical methods to measurements made from natural gamma ray logs yield information about the rocks undreamed of by Lyell, Cuvier, or any of the 19th century ‘fathers’ of the science. One way of seeing the meaning of their work is to see it as the liberation of sedimentology from stratigraphy. This is pertinent for Flood geology because today’s methods allow a more rigorous examination of the Flood from a sedimentological/hydrodynamic point of view. If the movement of water occurred in similar ways across a wide range of scales, then the self-similarity of sedimentary layering and hiatuses may have been a natural outgrowth of the Flood and a way to help us understand it.”35
figure-5
Figure 5. The contact between the igneous and metamorphic rocks of the upper crust and the flat lying Tapeats Sandstone at the bottom of the Grand Canyon (dashed line). Note breccia at the base of Tapeats.

Unconformities, then, also offer a means to critique uniformitarianism on its home field, showing that most of the ‘record’ is missing and it is thus far less credible and confidence-promoting than geologists believe.

Diachronous vs synchronous boundaries

Uniformitarians pay lip service to diachronous erosional surfaces (a surface where some deposits above the surface are older than some deposits below), because the time during which the erosion took place is typically less than field stratigraphic discrimination or is constrained within large stratigraphic intervals. Diluvialists, however, are constrained by the relative ages of boundaries; one day in the Flood might represent significant deposition or erosion (figure 4). Modern events demonstrate rapid erosion and deposition. Storms, tsunamis, eruptions, turbidity flows, and river flooding all indicate that significant sedimentation and erosion can occur in very short time periods. During a global Flood, this effect would be magnified, and the geographic scale would be global, not local:

“The Flood shatters the illusion that time is the key to stratigraphy, focusing attention instead on the effects of widely varying tectonic and hydraulic energy levels on depositional environments, and on widespread diagenetic effects on those rapidly-deposited rocks.”36

Towards a more actualistic understanding

Actualism proposes that observed processes form the only valid analogies for historical explanations. But actualism is impossible in the dimension of time because the length of human observation is infinitesimal with respect to deep time. Furthermore, geologic processes are scale-dependent; the result of the flow of 100 gallons of water across a location is much different from the flow of 100 million gallons. Geologists cannot deny evidence of largescale processes in the rock record, but act in cognitive dissonance as if these ‘rare events’ are the exception rather than the rule. Flood geology offers a different kind of ‘actualism’. Although its processes were physically of greater geographic scale and intensity, underlying hydraulic principles allow quantitative assessment.38

Likely explanations for unconformities during the Flood

wind-river-mountains
Figure 6. Great Unconformity at the top of the Wind River Mountains of Wyoming. View is to the east.

Diluvialists see nonconformities as nothing more than the deposition of sedimentary rocks on igneous and/or metamorphic rocks. For example, the Great Unconformity occurs at the base of the horizontal sequence in Grand Canyon, and rests mostly on igneous and metamorphic rocks (figure 5). It likely represents an early-Flood planation surface,39 and its regional nature is seen in its occurrence in Wyoming and south-central Montana (figure 6). Paraconformities, if real, would represent short breaks in continuous sedimentation, or possibly short time intervals between successive tsunami-like wave sets. Disconformities and angular unconformities would have been caused by rapid erosion, often accompanied by rapid tectonic changes.

Unconformities at Grand Canyon

Old-earth proponents identified 19 unconformities at Grand Canyon,40 and claim such unconformities cannot be explained by Noah’s Flood:

Figure-7
Figure 7. After deposition of strata by Flood (A), uplift would fold those strata (B), and subsequent erosion would create angled beds (C). If covered by later layers, an angular unconformity would be created.
“Multiple unconformities in a sequence of rocks, such as in the Grand Canyon, are impossible to reconcile with a single catastrophic event, which is why flood geologists work so hard at discounting the presence of all but the most obvious ones.”41

Their assertion ignores modern hydraulics and sedimentation, and assumes the stratigraphic approach and its associated biostratigraphic and radiometric dating methods: “In the case of sedimentary rock in places like the Grand Canyon, estimates are based largely on a comparison of the local fossil record with the global record.”42 This circularity flows not from empirical observation, but from assuming deep time, uniformitarianism, and evolution. They admit that 75% of deep time is missing in the Grand Canyon record (including the Precambrian), as compared to the geologic timescale. The Great Unconformity supposedly represents a billion-year gap. This angular unconformity, as well as others like Siccar Point (figure 1), can be explained by rapid uplift and erosion during the Flood (figure 7). The base of the Tapeats Sandstone above the Great Unconformity is a thin layer of breccia, indicating energetic flow. Since the Tapeats Sandstone can be traced hundreds of kilometres, it seems likely it was formed by widespread energetic events. Furthermore, Flood geologists welcome investigation of these unconformities; if so much of the record is missing, how can we trust the interpretation of uniformitarian geologists?

Of those 19 unconformities at Grand Canyon, 10 are disconformities (figure 2b) showing gaps of up to many millions of years, like that of 160 Ma between parallel beds of the Cambrian Muav Limestone and the Mississippian Redwall Limestone (figure 8). In addition to fossil changes, the Grand Canyon disconformities are physically identified by weathering of the overlying layer, channels in the lower layer, and karst features on the top of the lower layer when it is carbonate. However, the ‘weathered rock in overlying sediments’ example of Hill et al. is the basal Surprise Canyon Formation within channels on the top of the Redwall Formation.43 But the Surprise Canyon Formation is equally well explained as a depositional lag within a channel carved by a linear increase in flow velocity. The time required for its deposition is a factor of current size, depth, velocity, and sediment source. To call it ‘weathering’ is another example of uniformitarian circular reasoning. A similar example is found at the base of the Surprise Canyon Formation.

Redwall-limestone
Figure 8. Contact between the Redwall and Muav Limestones supposedly represents about 160 Ma, but it shows little erosion (from the North Kaibab Trail).

The Temple Butte Formation comprises channel fill deposits at the top of the Muav Limestone, and the Surprise Canyon Formation comprises channel fill atop the Redwall Limestone. These channels are thought to represent ancient fluvial systems. Channels and the channel fill (figure 9) are actually rare in the Grand Canyon,44 but could have been easily and rapidly formed during the Flood by relative changes in the local base level, creating channels that were subsequently filled in. These channels rarely exceed 120 m in depth. Erosion into the Redwall and Muav Limestones indicates a degree of cementation. This is not surprising, since limestone is a cementing agent. Much ado is made of the channel fill yielding plant fossils at the base and marine fossils at the top: “This is possible only if the Redwall Limestone was above sea level for an extended time and was later submerged.”45 However, time is only in the minds of uniformitarians; plant matter was present in floodwaters. The interpretation of a river system is a uniformitarian interpretation, no more and no less. If the channels and their fills are from an ancient river, why are there not breccia layers at all levels of the fill and not just at the base? That suggests a single event of erosion and deposition.

The ‘karst’ at the top of the Redwall Limestone consists of collapse features (sinkholes) that are filled with the same sediments as found in the channels. There are also caves found in the formation that might have formed after sedimentation. The features are considered paleokarst, and are believed to have formed over a long time in a subaerial environment. However, such features can be produced by the Flood, by hydrothermal flows or gas seeps.46,47 The area could also have been briefly exposed above the floodwater in which the so-called paleokarst features formed in a matter of days:

figure-9
Figure 9. Small double parabolic scour within the Redwall Limestone (courtesy of Tom Vail)
“It is likely that the rapidly accumulating Flood sediments periodically emerged. The resultant degassing and dewatering of waterlogged sediments, along with the associated chemical changes, would have developed a wide range of negative relief in a matter of days.”48

So, the observed features of the rock record, including unconformities, can readily be explained by the Flood. Only the Flood explains the lack of physical erosion within large-scale, flat-laying strata—which is typical of the rock record.49 In either case, unconformities are significant. For uniformitarians, they are convenient places to place the millions of years not actually seen in the rocks. For creationists, they are indicators of the hydraulic and tectonic environments of the Flood.

Conclusion

Unconformities represent erosional events in the rock record. Uniformitarianism emphasizes the supposed time duration of unconformities, and uses unconformities as repositories of the deep time not recorded in strata. Diluvial geology should instead focus on the mechanics of the actual event, recognizing that the larger scale of extent and intensity better defines the surfaces.

References and notes

  1. Walker, T., Unmasking a long-age icon, Creation 27(1):50–55, 2004. Return to text.
  2. Rudwick, M.J.S., Bursting the Limits of Time, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL, p. 169, 2005. Return to text.
  3. The ‘stratigraphic approach’ is more properly called the ‘time-stratigraphic approach’, but is shortened for convenience. Return to text.
  4. Reed, J.K. and Oard, M.J., Not enough rocks: the sedimentary record and earth’s past, J. Creation 31(2):84–93, 2017. Return to text.
  5. Barrell, J., Rhythms and the measurement of geologic time, Geological Society of America Bulletin 28:745–904, 1917. Return to text.
  6. Ager, D.V., The Nature of the Stratigraphical Record, John Wiley and Sons, New York, 1973; Ager, D.V., The New Catastrophism, Cambridge University Press, 1993. Return to text.
  7. Neuendorf, K.K.E., Mehl, Jr, J.P., and Jackson, J.A. (Eds.), Glossary of Geology, 5th edn, American Geological Institute, Alexandria, VA, p. 648, 2005. Return to text.
  8. Miall, A.D., The valuation of unconformities, Earth-Science Reviews 163:22–71, 2016. Return to text.
  9. Blackwelder, E., The valuation of unconformities, J. Geology 17:289–299, 1909. Return to text.
  10. Grabau, A.W., Principles of Stratigraphy, A.G. Seiler and Company, New York, 1913. Return to text.
  11. Levorson, A.I., Discovery thinking, American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin 27:887–928, 1943. Return to text.
  12. Wheeler, H.E., Time-stratigraphy, American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin 42:1047–1063, 1958. Return to text.
  13. Sloss, L.L., Krumbein, W.C., and Dapples, E.C., Integrated facies analysis; in: Longwell, C.R. (Ed.), Sedimentary Facies in Geologic History, Geological Society of America Memoir 39, pp. 91–124, 1949; Sloss, L.L., Sequences in the cratonic interior of North America, Geological Society of America Bulletin 74:93–113, 1963. Return to text.
  14. Froede Jr, C.R., Akridge, A.J., and Reed, J.K., Can megasequences help define biblical geology? J. Creation 29(2):16–25, 2015. Return to text.
  15. Miall, ref. 8, p. 23. Return to text.
  16. Childs, O.E., Correlation of stratigraphic units of North America—COSUNA, American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin 69(2):173–180, 1985. See also Salvador, A., Chronostratigraphic and geochronometric scales in COSUNA stratigraphic correlation charts of the United States, American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin 69(2):181–189, 1985. Return to text.
  17. Reed, J.K., Changing Paradigms in Stratigraphy, Part II: Another ‘New Uniformitarianism’? J. Creation 30(1):83–88, 2016. Return to text.
  18. Vail, P.R., Mitchum Jr, R.M, and S. Thompson, III, Seismic stratigraphy and global changes of sea level, part four, Global cycles of relative changes of sea level, American Association of Petroleum Geologists Memoir 26, pp. 83–98, 1977. Van Wagoner, J.C. et al., An overview of the fundamentals of sequence stratigraphy and key definitions; in: Wilgus C.K. et al. (Eds.), Sea-level Changes: an Integrated Approach, Society of Economic Paleontologists and Mineralogists Special Publication 42, pp. 39–45, 1988. Return to text.
  19. E.g. Froede Jr, C.R., Sequence stratigraphy and creation geology, Creation Research Society Quarterly 31:138–147, 1994; Davison, G.E., The importance of unconformity-bounded sequences in Flood stratigraphy, J. Creation 9:223–243, 1995; Bartlett, A.C., Sequence stratigraphy: value and controversy—for whom? Creation Research Society Quarterly 34:5–22, 1997; Klevberg, P., The philosophy of sequence stratigraphy, part III—application to sequence stratigraphy, Creation Research Society Quarterly 37:94–104, 2000. Return to text.
  20. Clarey, T., Summary of megasequences across North America and the global Flood, icr.org/article/megasequences-north-america, accessed 12 October 2017. Return to text.
  21. Sadler, P.M., Sediment accumulation rates and the completeness of stratigraphic sections, J. Geology 89(5):569–584, 1981. Return to text.
  22. Bailey, R.J. and Smith, D.G., Scaling in stratigraphic data series: implications for practical stratigraphy, First Break 10:57–66, 2010. Return to text.
  23. Miall, A.D., Updating Uniformitarianism: Stratigraphy as just a set of ‘Frozen Accidents’; in: Smith, D.G., Bailey, R.J., Burgess, P.M., and Fraser, A.J. (Eds.), Strata and Time: Probing the Gaps in our Understanding, Special Publication 404, Geological Society, London, 2015. Return to text.
  24. Oard, M.J., Hergenrather, J., and Klevberg, P., Flood transported quartzites—east of the Rocky Mountains, J. Creation 19(3):76–90, 2005; Oard, M.J., Hergenrather, J., and Klevberg, P., Flood transported quartzites; part 4—diluvial interpretations, J. Creation 21(1):86–91, 2007; Oard, M.J. and Klevberg, P., A diluvial interpretation of the Cypress Hills Formation, Flaxville gravels, and related deposits; in: Walsh, R.E. (Ed.), Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Creationism, technical symposium sessions, Creation Science Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 421–436, 1998; Oard, M.J. and Klevberg, P., Deposits remaining from the Genesis Flood: rim gravels in Arizona, J. Creation 21(1):86–91, 2007. Return to text.
  25. Barnhart, W.R., Hurricane Katrina splay deposits: hydrodynamic constraints on hyperconcentrated sedimentation and implications for the rock record, Creation Research Society Quarterly 48(2):123–146, 2011; Barnhart, W.R., A hydrodynamic interpretation of the Tapeats Sandstone, part I: basal Tapeats, Creation Research Society Quarterly 48(4):288–311, 2012; Barnhart, W.R., A hydrodynamic interpretation of the Tapeats Sandstone, part II: middle and upper Tapeats, Creation Research Society Quarterly 49(1):19–42, 2012. Return to text.
  26. Austin, S.A., Nautiloid mass kill and burial event, Redwall Limestone (Lower Mississippian), Grand Canyon Region, Arizona and Nevada; in: Ivey, R.L. (Ed.), Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Creationism, Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 55–99, 2003. Return to text.
  27. Lalomov, A.V., Flood geology of the Crimean Peninsula, part I: Tavrick Formation, Creation Research Society Quarterly 38(3):118–124, 2001; Lalomov, A.V., Flood geology of the Crimean Peninsula, part II: conglomerates and gravel sandstones of the Demerdji Formation, Creation Research Society Quarterly 40(1):17–23, 2003; Lalomov, A.V., Turgarova, M.A., and Platenov, M., Research of paleohydraulic conditions and determination of actual time of sedimentation of Cambrian-Ordovician sandstones of St. Petersburg region, part II, Final Report for 2005 ARCTUR (Moscow) and Lithological Department of Geological Faculty of St. Petersburg State University, 2006. Return to text.
  28. Berthault, G., Sedimentological interpretation of the Tonto Group stratigraphy (Grand Canyon Colorado River), Lithology and Mineral Resources 39(5):480–484, 2004. See also, Berthault, G., Analysis of the main principles of stratigraphy on the basis of experimental data, Lithology and Mineral Resources 37(5):442–446, 2002. Return to text.
  29. Howe, G.F. and Froede Jr, C.R., The Haymond Formation boulder beds, Marathon Basin, West Texas: theories on origins and catastrophism, Creation Research Society Quarterly 36:17–25, 1999. Froede Jr, C.R., Neogene sand-to-pebble siliciclastic sediments on the Florida peninsula: sedimentary evidence in support of the Genesis Flood, Creation Research Society Quarterly 42:229–240, 2006. Return to text.
  30. Sigler, R. and Wingerden, V., Submarine flow and slide deposits in the Kingston Peak Formation, Kingston Range, Mojave Desert, CA: evidence for catastrophic initiation of Noah’s Flood; in: Walsh, R.E. (Ed.), Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Creationism, Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 487–501, 1998. Return to text.
  31. Oard, M.J., The Missoula Flood Controversy and the Genesis Flood, Creation Research Society Books, Chino Valley, AZ, 2004. Return to text.
  32. Oard, M.J., The Great Missoula Flood: Modern Day Evidence for the Worldwide Flood, Awesome Science Media, Canby, OR, 2014. Return to text.
  33. Oard, M.J., Origin of Appalachian geomorphology, Part I: erosion by retreating Floodwater and the formation of the continental margin, Creation Research Society Quarterly 48(1):33–48, 2011; Oard, M.J., Origin of Appalachian geomorphology, Part II: surficial erosion surfaces, Creation Research Society Quarterly 48(2):105–122, 2011; Oard, M.J., Origin of Appalachian geomorphology, Part III: channelized erosion late in the Flood, Creation Research Society Quarterly 48(4):329–351, 2012. Return to text.
  34. Bailey, R.J. and Smith, D.G., Quantitative evidence for the fractal nature of the stratigraphic record: results and implications, Proceedings Geological Association 116:129–138, 2005. Return to text.
  35. Reed, J.K., Changing Paradigms in Stratigraphy, “A Quite Different Way of Analysing the Record”, J. Creation 30(1):83–88, 2016; p. 87. Return to text.
  36. Reed, J.K., Toppling the Timescale, Part II: Unearthing the cornerstone, Creation Research Society Quarterly 44(4):256–263, 2008; p. 261. Return to text.
  37. From Reed, J.K., Rocks Aren’t Clocks, Creation Books Publishers, Powder Springs, GA, 2013. Return to text.
  38. Baumgardner, J.R., Numerical modeling of the large-scale erosion, sediment transport, and deposition processes of the Genesis Flood, Answers Research J. 9:1–24, 2016. Return to text.
  39. Oard, M.J. and Reed, J.K., How Noah’s Flood Shaped Our Earth, Creation Book Publishers, Powder Springs, GA, 2017. Return to text.
  40. Hill, C., Davidson, G., Helble, T., and Ranney W. (Eds.), The Grand Canyon: Monument to an Ancient Earth—Can Noah’s Flood Explain the Grand Canyon? Kregel Publications, Tulsa, OK, 2016. Return to text.
  41. Hill et al., ref. 40, p. 85. Return to text.
  42. Hill et al., ref. 40, p. 99. Return to text.
  43. Hill et al., ref. 40, p. 102. Return to text.
  44. Personal observations of Oard. Return to text.
  45. Hill et al., ref. 40, p. 103. Return to text.
  46. Silvestru, E., The riddle of paleokarst solved, J. Creation 15(3):105–114, 2001. Return to text.
  47. Woodmorappe, J., More evidence against so-called paleokarst, J. Creation 15(3):100–104, 2001. Return to text.
  48. Silvestru, ref. 46, p. 109. Return to text.
  49. Roth, A.A., ‘Flat gaps’ in sedimentary rock layers challenge long geologic ages, J. Creation 23(2):76–81, 2009. Return to text.

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