I have a long standing interest in the paleolimnology of the arid climate lakes of the western U.S., particularly in the Basin and Range Province. Studies by my colleagues, students and myself have included drill core investigations at Summer Lake Oregon, where we have integrated ostracode paleoecology and shell geochemistry with palynology, sedimentology and environmental magnetism studies (Palacios-Fest et al, 1993; Cohen et al, 2000; and Negrini et al, 2000). We have also studied the paleolimnology and paleoclimate history of the Great Salt Lake, including an analysis of Neogene cuttings records collected by AMOCO (Kowalewska and Cohen, 1998), and drill core records from the 2000 GLAD-800 drilling campaign (Dean et al., 2002; Balch et al, 2005).
In a new project with UA graduate student Jordon Bright and colleagues from the University of New Mexico and the University of Oregon we are investigating the paleoecological history of the enigmatic Bouse Formation, Mio-Pliocene deposits along the southern Colorado River that primarily record a series of lakes along the course of the paleo-Colorado but that also may contain a history of lake/estuary interactions where the Colorado River discharged to the developing Gulf of California (see R. Dorsey et al., 2013, Lake-estuary hypothesis for the Bouse Formation: New look at an old problem. Geol. Soc. Amer. Abstr. w/prog.)
A. Stratigraphy of the 121m GSL-00-04 drill core from the Great Salt Lake, Utah.
B. Late Quaternary Paleoshorelines around the south shore of the Great Salt Lake, Utah.