FORMATION OF LARGE-SCALE CROSS-BEDDING IN A CARBONATE UNIT

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SUMMARY

The type Lindsey Bridge Member of the Moorefield Formation of northeastern Oklahoma consists of 24 ft. of massively cross-bedded limestone. Cross-bed shape, lithologic variation, grain size and sorting, distribution of insolubles, and distribution of fossils and fossil burrows can be explained with reference to a hydrodynamic model developed in recent flume studies.

Three facies can be distinguished in this unit: (1 Thei) foresets, thick-bedded, well-sorted, fine to medium crinoidal grainstones, dipping at angles up to 1° (2) toesets, which are thin-bedded, poorly sorted, skeletal packstones notably more fossiliferous than the foresets, with which they are laterally gradational; toesets dip at approximately 5°-8° (3) bottomsets, composed of argillaceous, fine-grained (mainly silt-size), skeletal limestones. Foresets overlie previously deposited bottomsets; this geometry is typical of regressive sedimentation.

The exposure is adjacent to a pre-Moorefield topographic high. As currents crossing this high entered a basin on the downcurrent side, flow separation occurred. Bed material load was deposited mainly on the foreset slope, suspension material mainly in toeset and bottomset areas. The poor sorting of the toesets is in part due to reverse circulation, formed by the flow separation, which transported bottomset sediment back toward the foreset. Jopling (1965b) has shown that this depositional geometry produces tangential cross-beds similar to those seen in this outcrop. Differential settling velocity, substrate stability, and abundance of organic detritus influenced other sedimentologic properties of the deposit.

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