Inspection of roadcuts

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When I asked Deffe yes what one might expect from a close inspection of roadcuts, he said they were windows into the world as it was in other times. We made plans to take samples of highway rock. I suggested going north up some new interstate to see what the blasting had disclosed. He said if you go north, in most places on this continent, the geology does not greatly vary. You should proceed in the direction of the continent itself. Go west. I had been thinking of a weekend trip to Whiteface Mountain, or something like it, but now, suddenly, a vaulting alternative came to mind. What about Interstate 80, I asked him. It goes the distance. How would it be? “Absorbing,” he said. And he mused aloud: After 80 crosses the Border Fault, it pussyfoots along on morainal till that levelled up the fingers of the foldbelt hills. It does a similar dance with glacial debris in parts of Pennsylvania. It needs no assistance on the craton. It climbs a ramp to the Rockies and a fault-block staircase up the front of the Sierra. It is geologically shrewd. It was the route of animal migrations, and of human history that followed. It avoids melodrama, avoids the Grand Canyons, the Jackson Holes, the geologic operas of the country, but it would surely be a sound experience of the big picture, of the history, the construction, the components of the continent. And in all likelihood it would display in its roadcuts rock from every epoch and era. In seasons that followed, I would go back and forth across the interstate like some sort of shuttle working out on a loom, accompanying geologists on purposes of their own or being accompanied by them zakelijke energie vergelijken from cut to cut and coast to coast. At any location on earth, as the rock record goes down into time and out into earlier geographies it touches upon tens of hundreds of stories, wherein the face of the earth often changed, changed utterly, and changed again, like the face of a crackling fire. The rock beside the road exposes one or two levels of the column of time and generally implies what went on immediately below and what occurred (or never occurred) above. To tell all the stories would be to tell pretty much the whole of geology in many volumes across a fifty-foot shelf, a task for which I am in every conceivable way unqualified. I am a layman who has travelled with a small core sampling of academic and government geologists ranging in experience from a student to an eminence grise. I wish to make no attempt to speak for all geology or to sweep zakelijke energie in every fact that came along. I want to choose some things that interested me and through them to suggest the general history of the continent by describing events and landscapes that geologists see written in rocks.