Earth and Planetary Science
EPS Geophysics

AUG 2008 - Formation of Box Canyon, Idaho, by Megaflood: Implications for Seepage Erosion on Earth and Mars

EPS graduate students Michael Lamb and Sarah Aciego and EPS faculty members Bill Dietrich, Michael Manga and Don DePaolo have found new evidence that amphitheater-headed canyons on Earth and Mars might be carved by catastrophic floods rather than slow erosion by seepage erosion. Studying Box Canyon Idaho, which has morphologic attributes long inferred to result from gradual erosion by spring water, the team reported in the journal Science (reprint) that the canyon was instead carved during a megaflood about 45 thousand years ago. Press coverage.