Bulletin of Volcanology

, 70:105 | Cite as

Eruptive styles and inferences about plumbing systems at Hidden Cone and Little Black Peak scoria cone volcanoes (Nevada, U.S.A.)

  • Greg A. ValentineEmail author
  • Gordon N. Keating
Short Scientific Communication


We describe two small scoria cone volcanoes, Hidden Cone and Little Black Peak (ages between ~320–390 ka), in the Southwestern Nevada Volcanic Field and discuss their eruption mechanisms and inferences about their plumbing systems. Cone-forming pyroclastic deposits are consistent with eruptive styles ranging from Strombolian to violent Strombolian, and lavas emanated from near the bases of the cones. The volcanoes are monogenetic (rather than polycyclic, as allowed by previous geomorphic interpretations). Vents at each volcano appear to coincide with pre-existing normal faults, consistent with observations at older, deeply eroded volcanoes in the region. The existence of these two volcanoes on a topographically high area (particularly Hidden Cone) provides evidence for short feeder dike lengths (~500 m at the surface). We infer that this short length reflects the small length scale of the mantle source region that was tapped to feed each volcano.


Scoria cone Dike Southwest Nevada Volcanic Field 



This work was supported as part of the volcanic risk studies for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Yucca Mountain Project. We thank Frank Perry for his insights and discussion and for reviewing the manuscript, Don Krier for reviewing the manuscript, and Mike Cline for his management support of the work. Rick Kelley performed GIS volume calculations for Hidden Cone and Little Black Peak and developed Fig. 1, and Andrea Kron did the artwork for Figs. 2, 3 and 4. Comments and suggestions by C. Connor and an anonymous reviewer greatly helped to improve the paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Earth and Environmental Sciences DivisionLos Alamos National LaboratoryLos AlamosUSA

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