Tectonics, more than any other process or event, should show whether the Cenozoic Erathem, mainly the
Paleogene and Neogene Systems, was a result of the
Flood. The sheer magnitude of the Cenozoic tectonic
events should be most persuasive. This paper will explore
five tectonic processes evident in the Cenozoic Erathem.
These are additional evidences that are best explained by
Flood tectonics and not post-Flood catastrophism (table 1).
Huge Cenozoic vertical tectonics
The Cenozoic Erathem is characterized by huge
vertical tectonics. Many of the mountain ranges within
the greater Rocky Mountains in the western US, which
include about 100 individual small ranges, have uplifted
thousands of metres relative to the same rocks in adjacent
valleys or basins. The mountains rose or the basins sank
or both. During uplift, the valleys and basins filled up
with thousands of metres of sediment. Later, hundreds of
metres of these same sediments were eroded off the top.
Differential vertical tectonics, Rocky Mountains
In Wyoming, the spread of quartzite cobbles and gravels
during the Cenozoic ended up several mountain ranges from
their source in the western Rocky Mountains. This indicates
that the granitic upper crust probably was generally level
at one time (figure 1).
2, 3 Therefore, mountains must not
have been a barrier at the beginning of quartzite transport.
Moreover, the same sedimentary rocks found as erosional
remnants on the tops of the mountains (figure 2) match tilted
sedimentary rocks along the edges of the adjacent basins
that continue underneath the flatter sedimentary rocks in the
middle of the basins (figure 3). Since sediments are generally
laid horizontally, it indicates a generally flat upper crust over
large areas at the time of deposition.
So, if we compare the height of the granite and gneiss
upper crust in the mountains and the same crust in the
adjacent valleys or basins, we can determine the amount of
uplift of the mountains relative to the valleys and basins.
This comparison suggests that the Beartooth Mountains
rose 7,000 m,
4 the Teton Mountains rose about 9,000 m,
Wind River Mountains about 13,500 m,
6 and the Rawlins
uplift was 11,300 m with respect to the Hanna Basin.
Moreover, the Uinta Mountains of northeast Utah rose over
9 Wallace Hansen summarizes:
“The upbuckling that produced the mountains was
accompanied by comparable downbuckling under the
basins. As the mountains rose, the basins subsided, so
that deposits once near sea level throughout the region
are now 12,000–
13,000 feet high in the mountains but
are as much as 30,000 feet below sea level beneath the
Green River and Uinta Basins [emphasis added].”
Hansen essentially paraphrases Psalm 104: 8 in
discussing the differential vertical tectonics of the Uinta
Range. Figure 4 is a schematic summarizing the 12,000 m
of differential vertical tectonics between the Uinta Range
and the adjacent basins.
Practically all this tectonic offset in the Rocky Mountains
occurred during the Cenozoic. For instance, the Uinta
Mountains rose in the Cenozoic. The Teton Mountains
are believed to have risen mostly in the past 5 Ma (in the
uniformitarian timescale), near the end of the late Cenozoic.
Tectonic Evidences Strength
1. Huge vertical tectonics Strong
2. Tremendous horizontal plate movements Strong
3. Ophiolites Strong
4. Metamorphic core complexes Moderate
5. Ultrahigh-pressure minerals Strong
Flood processes into the late Cenozoic:
part 4—tectonic evidence
Michael J. Oard
This paper presents five Cenozoic Erathem tectonic processes best explained by the Flood. These are the stupendous
differential vertical tectonics: huge horizontal plate movements, including the crashing of India into Asia (assuming
catastrophic plate tectonics); the emplacement of ophiolites; the development of metamorphic core complexes; and the
emplacement of ultrahigh-pressure minerals.
Table 1. Summary of Cenozoic tectonic evidences best explained by Flood
processes. The strength is based on my subjective opinion on whether
a K/Pg Flood/post-Flood boundary interpretation can explain them with