The Upper Mississippian Diamond Peak Formation

White Pine County, Nevada

The author's parents stand atop highly eroded upper Mississippian Diamond Peak Formation in White Pine County, Nevada, north of Antelope Summit. The Diamond Peak Formation produces one of the largest late Mississippi fossil faunas in the US West, including: foraminfera; corals; bryozoans; brachiopods; gastropods; pelecypods (AKA, the bivalves); cephalopods (numerous species of goniatites ammonoids); crinoids; ostracods; and conodonts (diminutive tooth-like denticles, unrelated to modern jaws, that served to enable food gathering in an extinct lamprey eel-like organism). This is the exact spot where years earlier my father had camped while completing his Summer Field Course (mapping in full geological detail a specific portion of a geographic quadrangle) for a Bachelor of Science degree in geology from the University of Southern California; he also went on to gain a Master of Science degree in engineering geology from the University of Southern California.

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