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Geology of the Western Slope

Jun 30, 2018

The western part of Rocky Mountain National Park offers a grand opportunity to see some of the oldest rocks in Colorado as well as some beautiful examples of very recent (geologically speaking) glacial features.


At this event, participants will learn how geologists interpret the nature and history of the rocks they study, as well as the processes that created and deformed the rocks. We will be looking far back in time and deep into the Earth to understand how metamorphism changed sediments that may have been more than two billion years old into the 1.75-billion-year old schists and gneisses that dominate western RMNP's bedrock. We will examine the effects of tremendous tectonic forces that began more than 69 million years ago and caused these rocks to be heaved up more than two miles above sea level. The extensive volcanic activity that occurred just 25 million years ago in the Never Summer Range on the west side of the park will be another topic of our investigation.