Best Of Blue Dot: A New Plate Boundary In The Making? The Walker Lane

Jun 26, 2020

Geologist Jim Faulds leads a field trip investigating faulting in the Walker Lane.
Credit Jim Faulds


Dave investigates the idea that the boundary between the North American and Pacific tectonic plates may be in the process of "stepping" eastward from the San Andreas Fault to the so called "Walker Lane." He visits with Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology tectonics expert Jim Faulds, who is one of the leading proponents of the new theory. 

We take a virtual geologic field trip from the Gulf of California, up through the Eastern California Shear Zone (where the July 4-5 Ridgecrest earthquakes rocked the high desert) and up one of the most scenic highways in the world -- Highway 395 east of the Sierra Nevada. 

It's been the setting of countless westerns and commercials and for good reason -- the spectacular scenery due to the volcanic and tectonic forces unleashed over time in this part of eastern California and western Nevada. Will Reno be beachfront property? Probably, but you'll have to wait a few million years to find out!