Geology of the Millers Cove area, Roanoke, Craig and Montgomery counties, Virginia

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute


The Millers Cove area is underlain by rock ranging in age from Middle Cambrian Elbrook Dolomite to Early Mississippian Price Sandstone. Carbonate deposition was dominant into the Ordovician with elastic sedimentation dominant throuhout the rest of the Paleozoic.

Cove Mountain is formed by the overturned northeast plunging Cove Mountain anticline and Dragons Tooth syncline. To the southwest the anticline passes beneath the Pulaski fault. The extension of the anticline to the northeast is unknown but it may be continuous with the Broad Run anticline. The Dragons Tooth syncline is continuous to the northeast with the North Mountain syncline but to the southwest passes beneath the Pulaski fault. The southwest plunging Brush Mountain-Little Mountain syncline may be continuous with the northeast plunging Broad Run Mountain syncline.

The Miller fault has 10,000 feet of stratigraphic displacement where it passes under the Pulaski fault but it loses displacement and apparently terminates to the northeast. Thus, the Miller fault block is paraautochthonous. The Pulaski fault which separates the Miller fault block from the Catawba syncline is an overthrust of 10 mile horizontal displacement and 10,000 foot stratigraphic displacement.

The first of two different deforming forces produced folds whose axes trend N. 35° E. The second was associated with thrust faulting and caused refolding along trends of N. 60° E. Accompanying faulting was the rotation of the southwestern end of the Miller fault block, the depression of the Brush Mountain-Little Mountain syncline beneath the weight of the Pulaski and Miller fault blocks, and the bowing of the Catawba syncline and Sinking Creek anticline under the buttressing action of Cove Mountain.