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San Andreas Fault at Parkfield


The Parkfield segment lies between the creeping segment and the central segment of the San Andreas fault.

Parkfield is the center of a handful of ranches held by the same families for a hundred years and more. It started as a mining town named Imusdale when coal was found in the 1850s, but the mine soon flooded and the settlers slowly petered out to a few ranchers. Today Parkfield's population is around 20. If not for the large earthquakes that have struck the area roughly every generation, only a few backroad types would know about it.

Parkfield is special among California geologists, especially those who study earthquakes. There is a cachet to having visited Parkfield because of its important role as a laboratory of field seismology. But it's also a beautiful place in its own right.

Follow the San Andreas fault through this region on the interactive fault map at Thule Scientific, publisher of the excellent Field Guide to the San Andreas Fault.

San Andreas fault home page

Images 1-12 of 21
A shaky valleyCholame ValleyA linear sceneCholame Valley PanoramaWatch North America go byParkfield Bridge from Pacific PlateAlert for signalsTurkey Flat Seismic Monitoring Station
Tectonic frameworkFault Map of Parkfield SegmentMaking geologic historySAFOD Drilling RigPlan for a hooked holeSAFOD Drilling ProfileTools of the tradeCarbide Drill Bits
Evidence from the boreholeDrill Cuttings at SAFODWatch your headAdjust the Crown-O-MaticSlim pickingsParkfield Ground SquirrelGeologists on TVSAFOD in the News
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