Giant sandstone pipes crop out over a 20 000 km(2) area of SE Utah. They range from metres to decametres in diameter and crosscut more than 100 m of continental sediments. New and published observations, encompassing all known pipe localities in SE Utah, suggest that the pipes formed by upward movement of groundwater, sand and sediment blocks in response to liquefaction of buried dune sands. Pipe formation was most likely triggered by seismicity during a phase of Cordilleran shortening and regional tectonic reorganization in the late Middle Jurassic. The depth of liquefaction recorded by the pipes far exceeds depths usually considered in earthquake engineering.
- UPHEAVAL DOME