|Field Location: Natural
Bridges National Monument and vicinity (White Canyon).
Geologic Feature: Permian/Triassic unconformity, change from generally arid (eolian) to wetter conditions (mudflats, fluvial systems, paleosols, plant fossils, trace fossils) from the Permian to the Triassic.
Necessary Background Information: Permian/Triassic unconformity and possible causes.
Geologic Problem: Document the different environments represented by these rocks.
Rock Units Exposed: Permian Cutler Group. Triassic Moenkopi and Chinle Formations.
Skills: Depositional environment recognition. Fossil identification and interpretation.
Other Questions to Consider: (1) What magnitude of climatic change is necessary to cause such drastic changes in depositional conditions? (2) How can you differentiate among the various types of depositional types, from wind, water, evaporative? (3) What types of creatures lived in these environments? (4) What physical characteristics did they possess that allowed them to thrive, or prevented them from adapting to changing climatic conditions? (5) What characteristics of plants can be linked to their environments?
Anticipated Outcomes: Physical description and analysis of fossil materials. Recognition of field evidence of major climatic transitions. Ability to "create a story" from field (i.e., restricted sampling) evidence.