• Klimchouk's impact on speleogenesis in the Permian Basin
  • Characterization of evaporite karst in the Delaware Basin
  • Speleogenetic model for Castile evaporites


Due to the pioneering work of Alexander Klimchouk (2007), hypogene karst is now recognized as being complex and extensive throughout Permian strata of the greater Delaware Basin in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico (USA). Klimchouk heavily influenced our current understanding of hypogene speleogenesis in the Permian Ochoan Castile Formation where we now recognize diverse hypogene manifestations that include vertically-extensive breccia pipes, laterally-extensive blanket breccias, morphologically-varied caves, diagenetically-altered sulfates, and unique venting structures. Underlying Bell Canyon strata provide the transmissive zone for delivery and removal of solutionally aggressive fluids to the conformably overlying Castile evaporites. Current speleogenetic models indicate that hypogene karstification in Castile evaporites began in the early Neogene in conjunction with regional uplift and tilting. Since that time, hypogene processes have shifted eastward across the Delaware Basin in conjunction with the eastward migration of the Pecos River. Surface denudation has exposed updip regions of the Castile Formation to the west creating the Gypsum Plain where hypogene karst is exposed to epigene processes and associated overprinting. Today, the Gypsum Plain continues to evolve with both hypogene and epigene processes still active within the Delaware Basin.



Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.

Included in

Speleology Commons