Abstract by Eli Lopez

Personal Infomation

Presenter's Name

Eli Lopez

Degree Level



John McBride

Abstract Infomation


Geological Sciences

Faculty Advisor

John McBride


Characterization of a Lake Bonneville spit to serve as a depositional model for large scale lacustrine deposits.


Lake Bonneville was a Pleistocene pluvial lake in the Great Basin in the western United States. During the lake’s transgressive period, shoreline features such as spits were deposited from alluvium and weathered bedrock. In northwest Utah, an excavated spit provides an excellent laboratory for imaging due to wide open, flat terrain, low-clay, low-salinity, and low-moisture content of the site. This deposit documents key information about the lake level and depositional patterns of the spit. This study uses ground-penetrating-radar (GPR) to characterize the shoreline deposit and offers high-resolution images at a shallow depth. Facies associations of the spit help describe and reconstruct the depositional patterns. GPR images show the fine stratigraphic detail of the spit up to four meters below the surface. The GPR data can be correlated to the surface outcrop of the spit. This will add insights for a model of transgressive deposits in a lacustrine environment and additionally provide a comparison to regressive deposits previously studied with GPR in northwest Utah. This model can provide an understanding of lacustrine deposits on a larger scale.