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Monday, April 08, 2013

More on why the Grand Canyon is evidence for a Global Flood and why only Flood Geology explains the features of the Canyon.

Folded strata can only happen two ways:

1) Hard rock that has compressed, which will show signs that it has heated and cracked and/or metamorphism.

2) Soft strata that is bent while it is pliable.

Only the YEC model predicts pliable strata folded shortly after the flood before it hardened. There are many events that have occurred (long after the flood) that has folded hardened strata, but if the YEC model is correct, then we should find widespread strata in lower levels of the geologic column that is folded without showing any evidence of cracking or heat deformation.

Rock Layers Folded, Not Fractured

Flood Evidence Number Six

by Andrew A. Snelling

How could a series of sedimentary layers fold without fracturing? The only way is for all the sedimentary layers to be laid down in rapid succession and then be folded while still soft and pliable.

If the global Flood, as described in Genesis 7–8, really occurred, what evidence would we expect to find? Wouldn’t we expect to find rock layers all over the earth that are filled with billions of dead animals and plants that were rapidly buried and fossilized in sand, mud, and lime? Yes, and that’s exactly what we find.
This article concludes a series on the six main geologic evidences that testify to the Genesis Flood.
The fossil-bearing geologic record consists of tens of thousands of feet of sedimentary layers, though not all these layers are found everywhere around the globe, and their thickness varies from place to place. At most locations only a small portion is available to view, such as about 4,500 feet (1371 m) of strata in the walls of the Grand Canyon.

Uniformitarian (long-age) geologists believe that these sedimentary layers were deposited and deformed over the past 500 million years. If it really did take millions of years, then individual sediment layers would have been deposited slowly and the sequences would have been laid down sporadically. In contrast, if the global cataclysmic Genesis Flood deposited all these strata in a little more than a year, then the individual layers would have been deposited in rapid succession, one on top of the other.

Do we see evidence in the walls of the Grand Canyon that the sedimentary layers were all laid down in quick succession? Yes, absolutely!

The previous article in this series documented the lack of evidence for slow and gradual erosion at the boundaries between the sediment layers. This article explores evidence that the entire sequence of sedimentary strata was still soft during subsequent folding, and the strata experienced only limited fracturing. These rock layers should have broken and shattered during the folding, unless the sediment was still relatively soft and pliable.

Solid Rock Breaks When Bent

Solid Rock Breaks not Bends (Figure 1)

When solid, hard rock is bent (or folded) it invariably fractures and breaks because it is brittle.

When solid, hard rock is bent (or folded) it invariably fractures and breaks because it is brittle. Rock will bend only if it is still soft and pliable, like modeling clay. If clay is allowed to dry out, it is no longer pliable but hard and brittle, so any attempt to bend it will cause it to break and shatter.

When solid, hard rock is bent (or folded) it invariably fractures and breaks because it is brittle (Figure 1).1 

Rock will bend only if it is still soft and pliable—“plastic” like modeling clay or children’s Playdough. If such modeling clay is allowed to dry out, it is no longer pliable but hard and brittle, so any attempt to bend it will cause it to break and shatter.

When water deposits sediments in a layer, some water is left behind, trapped between the sediment grains. Clay particles may also be among the sediment grains. As other sedimentary layers are laid on top of the deposits, the pressure squeezes the sedimentary particles closer together and forces out much of the water. The earth’s internal heat may also remove water from the sediment. As the sediment layer dries out, the chemicals that were in the water and between the clay particles convert into a natural cement. This cement transforms the originally soft and wet sediment layer into a hard, brittle rock layer.

This process, known technically as diagenesis, can be exceedingly rapid.2 It is known to occur within hours but generally takes days or months, depending on the prevailing conditions. It doesn’t take millions of years, even under today’s slow-and-gradual geologic conditions.

Folding a Whole Strata Sequence Without Fracturing

Examples of Bent Rock Layers (Figures 2–4)

Figure 2. The boundary between the Kaibab Plateau and the less uplifted eastern canyons is marked by a large step-like fold, called the East Kaibab Monocline (above).

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Figure 3 and 4. It is possible to see these folded sedimentary layers in several side canyons. All these layers had to be soft and pliable at the same time in order for these layers to be folded without fracturing. The folded Tapeats Sandstone can be seen in Carbon Canyon (top) and the folded Mauv and Redwall Limestone layers can be seen along Kwagunt Creek (bottom).

Photos courtesy of Dr. Snelling

The 4,500-foot sequence of sedimentary layers in the walls of the Grand Canyon stands well above today’s sea level. Earth movements in the past pushed up this sedimentary sequence to form the Kaibab Plateau. However, the eastern portion of the sequence (in the eastern Grand Canyon and Marble Canyon areas in northern Arizona) was not pushed up as much and is about 2,500 feet (762 m) lower than the height of the Kaibab Plateau. The boundary between the Kaibab Plateau and the less uplifted eastern canyons is marked by a large step-like fold, called the East Kaibab Monocline (Figure 2).

It’s possible to see these folded sedimentary layers in several side canyons. For example, the folded Tapeats Sandstone can be seen in Carbon Canyon (Figure 3). Notice that these sandstone layers were bent 90° (a right angle), yet the rock was not fractured or broken at the hinge of the fold. Similarly, the folded Muav and Redwall Limestone layers can be seen along nearby Kwagunt Creek (Figure 4). The folding of these limestones did not cause them to fracture and break, either, as would be expected with ancient brittle rocks. The obvious conclusion is that these sandstone and limestone layers were all folded and bent while the sediments were still soft and pliable, very soon after they were deposited.

Herein lies an insurmountable dilemma for uniformitarian geologists. They maintain that the Tapeats Sandstone and Muav Limestone were deposited 500–520 million years ago3; the Redwall Limestone, 330–340 million years ago4; then the Kaibab Limestone at the top of the sequence (Figure 2), 260 million years ago.5 Lastly, the Kaibab Plateau was uplifted (about 60 million years ago), causing the folding.6 That’s a time span of about 440 million years between the first deposit and the folding. How could the Tapeats Sandstone and Muav Limestone still be soft and pliable, as though they had just been deposited? Wouldn’t they fracture and shatter if folded 440 million years after deposition?

The conventional explanation is that under the pressure and heat of burial, the hardened sandstone and limestone layers were bent so slowly they behaved as though they were plastic and thus did not break.7 However, pressure and heat would have caused detectable changes in the minerals of these rocks, tell-tale signs of metamorphism.8 But such metamorphic minerals or recrystallization due to such plastic behavior9 is not observed in these rocks. The sandstone and limestone in the folds are identical to sedimentary layers elsewhere.

The only logical conclusion is that the 440-million-year delay between deposition and folding never happened! Instead, the Tapeats-Kaibab strata sequence was laid down in rapid succession early during the year of the global cataclysmic Genesis Flood, followed by uplift of the Kaibab Plateau within the last months of the Flood. This alone explains the folding of the whole strata sequence without appreciable fracturing.


Uniformitarian geologists claim that tens of thousands of feet of fossiliferous sedimentary layers have been deposited over more than 500 million years. In contrast, the global cataclysmic Flood of Genesis 7–8 leads creation geologists to believe that most of these layers were deposited in just over one year. Thus, during the Flood many different strata would have been laid down in rapid succession.

In the walls of the Grand Canyon, we can see that the whole horizontal sedimentary strata sequence was folded without fracturing, supposedly 440 million years after the Tapeats Sandstone and Muav Limestone were deposited, and 200 million years after the Kaibab Limestone was deposited. The only way to explain how these sandstone and limestone beds could be folded, as though still pliable, is to conclude they were deposited during the Genesis Flood, just months before they were folded.
There is only one explanation for the folded rock layers in Grand Canyon—Noah’s Flood. Uniformitarian explanations cannot adequately explain these features.
In this special geology series we have documented that, when we accept the Flood of Genesis 7–8 as an actual event in earth history, then we find that the geologic evidence is absolutely in harmony with the Word of God. As the ocean waters flooded over the continents, they must have buried plants and animals in rapid succession. These rapidly deposited sediment layers were spread across vast areas, preserving fossils of sea creatures in layers that are high above the current (receded) sea level. The sand and other sediments in these layers were transported long distances from their original sources. We know that many of these sedimentary strata were laid down in rapid succession because we don’t find evidence of slow erosion between the strata.
As expected, the evidence in God’s world totally agrees with what we read in God’s Word. “Thy word is true from the beginning,” the psalmist tells us (Psalm 119:160).

Dr. Andrew Snelling holds a PhD in geology from the University of Sydney and has worked as a consultant research geologist to organizations in both Australia and the U.S. Author of numerous scientific articles, Dr. Snelling is now the director of the research department at Answers in Genesis–USA.


  1. E. S. Hills, “Physics of Deformation,” Elements of Structural Geology (London: Methuen & Co., 1970), pp. 77–103; G. H. Davis and S. J. Reynolds, “Kinematic Analysis,” Structural Geology of Rocks and Regions, 2nd ed. (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1996), pp. 38–97. Back
  2. Z. L. Sujkowski, “Diagenesis,” Bulletin of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists 42 (1958): 2694–2697; H. Blatt, Sedimentary Petrology, 2nd ed. (New York: W. H. Freeman and Company, 1992), pp. 125–159. Back
  3. L. T. Middleton and D. K. Elliott, “Tonto Group,” in Grand Canyon Geology, 2nd ed., S. S. Beus and M. Morales, eds. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003), pp. 90–106. Back
  4. S. S. Beus, “Redwall Limestone and Surprise Canyon Formation,” in Grand Canyon Geology, 2nd ed., S. S. Beus and M. Morales, eds. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003), pp. 115–135. Back
  5. R. L. Hopkins and K. L. Thompson, “Kaibab Formation,” in Grand Canyon Geology, 2nd ed., S. S. Beus and M. Morales, eds. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003), pp. 196–211. Back
  6. P. W. Huntoon, “Post-Precambrian Tectonism in the Grand Canyon Region,” in Grand Canyon Geology, 2nd ed., S. S. Beus and M. Morales, eds. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003), pp. 222–259. Back
  7. E. S. Hills, “Environment, Time and Material,” Elements of Structural Geology (London: Methuen & Co., 1970), pp. 104–139; G. H. Davis and S. J. Reynolds, “Dynamic Analysis,” Structural Geology of Rocks and Regions, 2nd ed. (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1996), pp. 98–149. Back
  8. R. H. Vernon, Metamorphic Processes: Reactions and Microstructure Development (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1976); K. Bucher and M. Frey, Petrogenesis of Metamorphic Rocks, 7th ed. (Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 2002). Back
  9. Ref. 8; G. H. Davis and S. J. Reynolds, “Deformation Mechanisms and Microstructures,” Structural Geology of Rocks and Regions, 2nd ed. (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1996), pp. 150–202. Back
"The Tapeats Sandstone has long been interpreted within the framework of uniformitarianism."
Volume 48, Spring 2012

Creation Research Society Quarterly excerpt of text and some pictures added.

The Tapeats Sandstone is the lowest Cambrian layer in the Grand Canyon in Arizona. It has been interpreted as beach, estuarine, and shallow marine coarse sand deposits, representing the initial stages of a slow transgression over a highly weathered and eroded, pre-vegetated epicratonic surface. In the basal Tapeats, two distinct bedforms occur:  (1) hyperconcentrated laminar bedforms deposited by high-velocity hyperconcentrated currents and (2) sandy debris flows in high-density turbulent flow. The high-velocity hyperconcentrated currents predominated, but were occasionally interrupted or overlaid by cascades of breccia that initiated short-lived, high-density turbulent flow. Both reflect extremely rapid deposition rather than tidal reworking on a passive margin. Rheologically plastic flows are distinct from fluidal flows.
The structure of high-density turbidity currents and hyperconcentrated flood flows are discussed, showing how the hyperconcentrated laminar bedforms and sandy debris flows could have been produced. Hydrological interpretation indicates that bedforms were produced by very rapid deposition in continuous currents over an extremely large area without regard for minor paleotopography, suggesting the rapid transgression of the Tapeats Sandstone in a massive flooding event.

As far back as 1795,James Hutton proclaimed, “The past history of our globe must be explained by what can be seen to be happening now.... No powers are to be employed that are not natural to the globe, no action to be admitted except those of which we know
the principle” (Hutton, 1795, cited in Holmes, 1965, p. 43).
Three conditions are stipulated here, and for a mechanism of erosion or sedimentation to be acceptable it needs to satisfy all three of them.
1. “Can be seen to be happening now.” 
While this point is often viewed by most casual observers as the most important, it does not stand alone. Hutton tied it to the following two conditions.
2. “Power must be natural.” But this also implies the power must be adequate. McKee’s 
(1967, p.850, brackets added) statement relates here: flood sediments (high energy) are very “similar to the type commonly ascribed to intermittent accumulation in quiet water [low energy] over a long period.” There is a large difference between low energy operating over a long time and high energy over a short time. There are “natural” conditions for both possibilities.
3. “Know the principles.” The principles of erosion and sedimentation are becoming better defined empirically, but geologists must be certain that they understand and apply them in proportion to the power exhibited in the nuances of the bedform. This is where the facies model  approach fails. While a given modern environment may satisfy some observations and appear to be a shortcut to a fuller understanding of others, a more careful observation and measurement of those conditions may show power and principles outside the possibilities of that facies.
The Flood is often viewed as a cause for erosion and sedimentation outside what “can be seen to be happening now” and therefore violates Hutton’s first condition. It is a mistake to view the Flood as a giant facies model; that approach has proven much less profitable than hydrodynamics. Though the Flood was outside of modern experience, flooding is a regular, observed occurrence, and its principles are increasingly well understood through the discipline of fluid dynamics, which applies to a varietyof media over a variety of scales, from micrometers to kilometers (Marusic et al., 2010; Rubin and McCulloch, 1980). 
Therefore, with more complete understanding of these physical principles, explanatory solutions togeological mechanisms of erosion and sedimentation at appropriate scale may be achievable.
McKee (1945) tried to satisfy the first of Hutton’s points by proposing a long, slow transgression to account for the Tapeats exposures. He limited the portion involved at any one time by positing the slow continual advance of the shoreline. The areal extent of the Tapeats is still problematic, given  the scale of modern marine incursions. To account for this, Rose (2006) made much of the differences between the Tapeats associated with the monadnocks in the eastern canyon and that covering the level peneplain in the western canyon. He emphasized that no actual bedding plane or fossil assemblage can be physically traced from the western to the eastern exposure. Despite the implication, he never came out and said that the Tapeats is not a continuous formation.
Hereford (1977) traced the formation an additional 230 km south to near Payson (Figure 7). In central Arizona, Hereford (1977) located monadnocks in the areas of St. Matthews, Hickey Mountain, northwest of Cherry, and west of the Big Black Mesa. He correlates his facies C, in central Arizona, with McKee’s (1945) descriptions of the Tapeats in the Bright Angel Creek area (the area of monadnocks and sandy debris flows). Hereford’s noting monadnocks running north to south emphasizes the similarities of the Tapeats subcrop and by implication the Tapeats deposition. Using these authors’ descriptions to draw a rough triangle, the minimum area of the Tapeats is about 23,000 km.
To account for this large area, Hereford (1977) split the Tapeats into six facies—from onshore to shoreline to offshore. Hereford (1977, p. 204) pointed out, “Sedimentary structures in faces C ... are common in modern beach environments.”  And, his model “assumes that in the western half of central Arizona the Tapeats Sandstone was deposited primarily on sandy inter tidal flats where the rise and fall of the tides molded the coarse sediments into many different forms” (Hereford, 1977, p. 209). 
But he would have done well to heed McKee et al.’s (1967, p. 850) caution: “Much of the layering is in the form of fine laminae similar to the type commonly ascribed to intermittent accumulation in quiet water over a long period of time.” Hutton’s first point is largely rejected by geologists today. The Tapeats simply adds another reason. Does attributing the basal Tapeats to debris and hyper-concentrated flows find modern analogs, things that “can be seen to be happening now”? It certainly does help us identify an “action ... of which we know the principle.” I have correlated Tapeats bedforms with those from flooding associated with volcanism. But they do not approach the size of the Tapeats. What are the most common occurrences of these flows today?
The most cited occurrences for debris and hyperconcentrated flows are in overbank splay deposits and alluvial fan deposits (Smith, 1986), fluvial fan deposits, and proximal submarine fans with subaqueous sediment gravity flows (Balance, 1984). 
Smith (1986) recognized that any such flows deposited by fluvial processes are seldom more than 10 km in radius, while volcanic “debris flows may extend 100 km or more from their sources ... and combined with high-sediment loads, may construct aprons of coarse volcaniclastics debris covering hundreds of square kilometers” (Smith, 1986, p. 1). 
If we are seeking a modern analog, the volcanic model seems the only one that could possibly result in a deposit the size of the Tapeats. Subaqueous gravity flows down canyons do cover large areas of the ocean floor, but these are not good analogs for the Tapeats. The erosion surface of the Great Unconformity is a peneplain projected to extend many hundreds of km, both to the northeast, the direction of the sediment source, and the west, the direction of transport (Rose, 2006). It provides no elevation or erosional features at its perimeter high enough or large enough to produce such a gravity flow that is comparable to canyons off the edge of today’s continental shelf
We understand much about beaches today, from estuaries to below wave base we have seen how sediments are eroded, transported, and deposited. Bedforms and their causal conditions have been documented. A broad range of observational data is available for comparison to the basal Tapeats. If this sandstone represents a beach environment, then we must assume that the sand was deposited one wave at a time and that it was worked and reworked into its preserved bedforms. That would satisfy Hutton’s first requirement. 
But the paleoenvironmental option does not explain the observed sediments and bedforms of the formation. Instead, the basal Tapeats was deposited quite rapidly—between 9 and 54 m/hr, and by a plastic flow reflecting flood-flow conditions. Rose’s (2006) suggestion of estuarine deposition seems plausible on the surface, but it would require a river with a depositional front of about 300km, the distance from Grand Canyon’s western mouth to the southern end of the Tapeats in central Arizona (Figure2). This would be a river as wide as Baja, California and the Gulf of California combined! Clearly, no such river exists anywhere on Earth today, and Hutton’s principle is invalidated.
Additionally, for a river to produce the necessary hyperpycnal flow, it would require a depth-averaged flow velocity of 3 m/s over a significant distance from the point of submerging up to 10’s of km. Furthermore, it would have required a velocity of 15 m/s or more (Lamb et al., 2010) for the flow prior to the plunge point. Such a velocity would require a slope of 0.05 – 0.10 or higher. Yet the slope for the basal Tapeats was determined to be lower than S = 0.016 and probably in the range of 0.0025, two orders of magnitude less. Nor does that kind of flow fit with Rose’s (2006, p. 234) description of “tidal channels [that] meandered and temporarily pooled and flowed.”
Moreover, the erosion and deposition cycle of a beach and its associated areas suggests an ongoing process over long periods of time. But the Great Unconformity is a surface created abruptly, exhibiting only a few meters of erosional breccia in only a few isolated locations where bedforms were deposited in seconds to minutes under flood-flow conditions in a one-time event. Outside of these few isolated locations, covering a total area of less than a km, the over whelming majority of the 23,000 km of the Great Unconformity shows abrupt erosion, creating a planation surface with low relief—variations of less than “a few meters per 100 m laterally” (Rose, 2006, p. 228)—and showing no erosional transition over the vast majority of that surface. Nowhere do geologists find the expected thick weathered surface. The Great Unconformity, therefore, also invalidates Hutton’s dictum.
The evidence of weathering put forth by Sharp (1940) and vetted by McKee (1945) is better explained by chemical changes after burial; diagenesis in the Precambrian rocks continued as thecGreat Unconformity was eroded and into the deposition of the basal Tapeats (Barnhart, 2011a). 
Many authors have called the breccia on the sides of monadnocks “regolith,”implying a long period of weathering. But this has been shown to be a biased assumption not supported by actual fieldcevidence. Once again, the facies model approach is shown to be camouflage for uniformitarianism.
Secular geologists have been blinded by the perceived presence of long periods of time for Earth’s past. They “know” that the Tapeats must have been deposited over a long period of time and posit low energy sources as causes. However, the size and scope of the catastrophic forces required to deposit these layers can be determined by quantitative sedimentology, and these suggest a more complex origin than the facies-models approach. In the second paper of this series, it will be seen that the middle and upper Tapeats render the problem even more complicated. Regardless, it is clear that the Tapeats was deposited over a freshly eroded surface rapidly enough to “freeze” breccia cascades off of topographic highs. This was accomplished by a strong, unidirectional current with superimposed storm surge waves. Thus the Tapeats is easily interpreted within the constraints of the Genesis Flood but less easily so by uniformitarian or actualistic models.
All illustrations are seen in the abstract.
Thought we would first look at the Grand Canyon a bit closer and show that the Canyon itself is a testament to the Global Flood.  The rock layers are classic flood-caused formations that can be duplicated with flumes.   The actual canyon and side canyons are also catastrophic, typical of formation by massive runoff and quick flood formations.   The study of formations made by smaller floods, hurricanes and tsunamis plus the use of flume technology to replicate layering as well as the Mt. St. Helens formations all have helped Flood Geology to demonstrate the catastrophic formation of the various layers as well as the formation of the canyon itself.
The blog will return to the Fossils series based on Sean Pittman's publications.   But it would make sense to come back and continue with the AIG's  Six main geologic evidences for the Genesis Flood after the Fossil series.
Darwinists are happy with an answer for such problems.  As long as someone gives any answer at all that fits the Darwinist model, they accept is uncritically.   That may be the primary purpose of talkorigins, to be a place where some kind of answer is listed for each question of Darwinism.   However, Creation Science is not satisfied with a preliminary answer, but instead in a rigorous study of every question to seek an answer that is supported with powerful and, if possible, conclusive evidence for the conclusion reached.  
Darwinism lacks the rigor of a true theory, it is an unsupported hypothesis and furthermore the various pillars that support Darwinism are missing or broken.   The Big Bang is a mess of contradictions and missing data.   Old-age geology does not stand up to scrutiny.  The Law of Biogenesis remains unchallenged by the slightest amount of evidence to the contrary.  Darwinists have no answer to the genesis of either information or life itself.  Evidence from the planets tell us they are young.   Study of stars shows us that the Sun would not have been friendly to life in the distant past and frankly the Sun itself is mysterious in that it does not behave as other stars, its activity being quite mild and therefore safe for human life unlike most stars.  The magnetic field of the Earth would have been too strong to sustain life some 20-25,000 years ago.  The atmosphere does not have a C-12/C-14 equilibrium, which means that the atmosphere is less than 25,000 years old.  Helium contained in granitic zircons indicates the time span is closer to 6-7,000 years.   Finally the eyewitness account of creation puts it at about 6500-7000 years old.
Long age dating methods consistently produce widely varying dates, sometimes even yielding dates from the future!   They are unsuccessful because they assume the state of the measured material at formation, which is in fact an unknown.  Darwinists cannot assert the rate of flow of elements into the oceans if they 1) do not account for the Flood and 2) do not know the amount of salt and other materials contained by the original oceans.    
By ignoring the historical evidence for a young Earth, Darwinists are indeed much like men examining a statue of Julius Caesar without  reading the literature written about him or including his life in some part of the account.   Not only does the Bible give a common-sense account of creation that does fit the facts we can observe, but virtually every culture in the world has an account of creation by Deity, a fall, a world-wide flood and often a dispersion that resembles Babel.   Archaelogical evidence shows that, while mankind did scatter across the globe, they took stories based on Genesis and also other indications of commonality, such as the commonality of pyramids, ziggurats and mounds found around the world.   Most cultures have a reference to Noah or one of his three sons as founders of their genealogy,  while some like the Jews and the Miao Tribe of China trace their ancestry from Adam.
Do yourself a favor and study the subjects by taking advantage of the various Creation Science links I have on my two links lists and find out what your public school teachers would not tell you...the truth.