Vance Holliday responds further to Firestone

1 Oct 2010

Responses to some of your comments (which are in italics):

Haynes did confirm our evidence for peaks in the magnetic fractions at the YD layer. He found more Ir than we did at nearly any site which is a smoking gun for an impact. He’s nuts if he thinks the Ir levels that he found in the stream bed are normal. Probably the Ir washed out of the YD layer into the streambed. Haynes believes that the mammoths and megafauna died in a sudden catastrophe but he won’t say what that catastrophe is.

As I predicted, Haynes is your hero when he finds Ir where you think he should (or proclaims a continent scale extinction at 129k) but when he finds an Ir spike where he shouldn’t and throws a ringer in your preconceived notions of an impact he “is nuts.” Nowthat is objectivity!

And you ignore the fact that Claeys lab in Belgium (the go-to lab for Ir, the impact people tell me) couldn’t find an Ir spike in your original batch of samples so they were sent to another lab that did get spikes so that is what you published. Claeys lab likewise failed to find Ir spikes in lots of other samples, including ours.

Your explanation for the Ir spike in the stream bed at Murray Springs is preposterous. You don’t need a PhD in nuclear physics to understand the basics of erosion, sediment transportation, and redeposition. The exposures at MS are several meters high with a thin Black Mat. Water washes down the entire section, eroding some of the black mat and the 12.9ka level plus the rest of the exposure. During a rain, this is going on all over the site. The water moves some sediment from the arroyo wall and then some of that sediment gets deposited on the floor. You really believe that the resulting deposit will be higher in Ir after all that??? Really???

Vance does indeed think that “something” happened at 12.9k but lots of other people don’t. We agree to disagree! Since this issue is obviously important to you, I suggest you look at the primary data, like the rest of us do! Also, look at his paper. On p. 6522 he refers to “the last of the Rancholabrean megafauna” just before 12.9ka. On Table 1, most of the megafauna are mammoth, which did persist to Clovis times, of course (and Waters & Stafford clearly show mammoth younger than 12.9ka). Otherwise, the next most common megafauna is bison, which didn’t becomes extinct.

As I said before, Russ Graham and Tom Stafford (you hang your hat on what Stafford says about the dating of Clovis) have devoted a lot of time to dating late Pleistocene megafauna and their data (I’ve seen Russ give two talks on this) clearly show that most critters were gone before 12.9ka.

Further, the work of Gill et al 2009 and Robinson et al 2005 also indicate that the megafauna declined significantly long before 12.9ka

“Pleistocene Megafaunal Collapse, Novel Plant Communities, and Enhanced Fire Regimes in North America”  Jacquelyn L. Gill, John W. Williams, Stephen T. Jackson, Katherine B. Lininger, Guy S. Robinson, 2009 SCIENCE 326:1100-1103

“Landscape Paleoecology and Megafaunal Extinction in Southeastern New York State” G. S. Robinson, L. P. Burney, D. A. Burney, 2005 Ecological Monographs 75, 295-315

Surovell also took far larger samples than we did diluting his results by an order of magnitude yet he sees the same basic picture.

I keep hearing this argument about “dilution” of samples and it is ridiculous. In your PNAS paper (p. 16017) you state that theaverage thickness of the “YDB layer” is 3 cm. THE AVERAGE THICKNESS! (But NOWHERE are the sampling intervals for your samples published or available – I asked both Allan West and Jim Kennett and neither responded). Some of Todd’s samples were thicker than 3cm, some about 3cm, some less. So NO WAY did he dilute his samples by “an order of magnitude.” This is such an astonishing red herring. Your magnetic microsphere levels are as much as an order of magnitude higher than any other samples in your sections. Explain to me how anyone could samples a zone maybe twice or three times as thick as you did and “dilute” the spike so it couldn’t be seen. Not possible. FURTHER, you report near zero levels of spheres above and below the 12.9ka level. Explain to me how we could collect more sample with near zero levels of spheres and dilute it such that we found more spheres than you did???  Huh? Maybe next you could argue that Todd was creating matter with his lab methods!

BTW, Jim Kennett’s lab ran splits of samples from Lubbock Lake that Surovell also ran. One of the samples was 9cm thick and yielded a big microspherule and nanodiamond spike. Problem is, it from a zone 1000 years younger than 12.9k.  So the idea of dilution because of sample thickness, as noted above, is a crock.

The Carolina Bays are the only place where the markers found in narrow sections elsewhere are found throughout the bay rims. For many years these bays were assumed to be impact formed. Revisionists came later but most of the recent arguments are unpublished meeting abstracts. Arguments based on questionable dating methods of samples of uncertain origin don’t carry much weight.

“Revisionists”???  Revising what? I’ve followed the literature on the Bays for several decades (I had a student working there years ago). The notion that they formed via an impact was rejected long ago. I gather you are branding Andrew Ivester a “revisionist.” But he was working on the Bays long before you came along. I agree that the OSL dating of the Bay Rims needs to be fully published. I’ve been pushing that for years. But meeting abstracts with solid data are perfectly legitimate to publish. Your arguments are just more canards. OSL is not a “questionable dating method” and the samples are not of “uncertain origin.”  You were perfectly happy to cite and distort one of Ivester’s abstracts and his OSL dates to make your case in your book (p. 127)!

We have presented a wealth of data. Archaeologists and geologists have made a mess of much of the analysis of the Clovis sites yet they expound on theories made largely upon opinion and conjecture. The data will decide this subject not your opinion or mine. Opponents can try as hard as they want to suppress new ideas. That is the mantra of geology for the past 100 years. It won’t suppress the truth.

Archaeologists and geologists are exactly the people who should be investigating archaeological and geological questions. You present no evidence whatsoever that they “made a mess.” This is simply your way of rationalizing a lot of data that can’t support your arguments.

The attached paper just came out this week. In it we look at the arguments for impact-induced population changes in North America. The key is stratified and dated archaeological sites. I would argue that you and your colleagues, none of whom have any experience with Paleoindian archaeology or geoarchaeology or the late Pleistocene terrestrial record, are the ones who “made a mess” of the analysis of Clovis sites. Otherwise, by your logic I should be writing papers on nuclear physics!

I agree that the data will decide the argument. In the attached paper with commentary (incl D Kennett) (just out) Dave Meltzer and I actually looked at the data (rather than just waving our arms) on Clovis and other Paleoindian occupations, focusing on dated, stratified sites rather than surface finds, to see is there is any sort of occupation hiatus. No new data – just the extensive published record. And there is simply no indication of a hiatus.

But you ignore or belittle any and all data that you don’t like. Your problem is bringing in preconceived notions compounded by cherry-picked data and gross distortions of the work of others (distorted to fit your claims).  After writing my last letter I felt like I should send you a bill for being your research assistant! Us mere mortals in geology and archaeology do our field and lab work first, analyze and think about ALL of the data, question the data, and think about various interpretations (this was developed in geology and is called “the method of multiple working hypotheses’). Then we offer our hypotheses. I recommend you try this sometime.

I am through banging my head against a wall of preconceived ideas. And I am through arguing. This is pointless. Adios.

Vance Holliday

“The money Americans spend on bottled water could pay for bringing fresh water to all the people in the world who need it.”
Lester Brown, Earth Policy Institute

  • If Odessa is part of your structure, then your hypothesis has problems. Odessa has been dated repeatedly and none of the dates come close to the YD, to my knowledge.

    It’s not part of my hypothesis really.

    But if Odessa’s been dated repeatedly, and none of those “dates” mach up, you have to ask why multiple dates? By what methods were those plural dates arrived at?

    Since you been riding me like a wet diaper without offering a single reference besides your own book, and opinions, and if you’re going to put statements out there in such authoritarian tones, you need to back them up with links to refereed literature. Or at least the name, and author, of a publication. Otherwise you’re just talking smack.

  • “I don’t need a Nuclear physicist to tell me that none of that has anything whatsoever to do with the fluid mechanics, and emplacement, of density currents of geo-ablative airburst melt. Such science has never been done.”

    Actually, such science has been done to some depth by nuclear physicists. Its simply like scaling laws, you are unaware of their work.

    Yeah, right, damn silly of me to not realize that Nuclear Physicists had studied the fluid mechanics of atmospheric pressure driven density currents of airburst melt in depth.

    I mean, it’s almost logical, right?. After all, if he’s a Nuclear Physicist, then research into the Fluid Mechanics, of non-volcanogenic modes of emplacement, of pyroclastic materials would be right down his alley. Or at least an easy task. Who knows? Maybe those nuclear physicists got bored, and just wanted a change of pace.

    Sounds damned interesting though. Do please, share with us the name of these versatile, and brilliant, scientists. Who knows? Maybe you might even provide a link to such revolutionary work.

  • E.P. Grondine

    Good morning Dennis –

    “But if Odessa’s been dated repeatedly, and none of those “dates” mach up, you have to ask why multiple dates? By what methods were those plural dates arrived at?”

    You can find all of that information in the meteorite list archives. Perhaps one of the Odessa dealers or collectors has compiled it all.

    “I mean, it’s almost logical, right?. After all, if he’s a Nuclear Physicist, then research into the Fluid Mechanics, of non-volcanogenic modes of emplacement, of pyroclastic materials would be right down his alley. Or at least an easy task. Who knows?”

    It is logical if you bothered to think about it for only a moment. What do you think are the effects of an airblast with nuclear charges? By the way, such research is not particularly an easy task, and is classified.

    As to who knows, you’ll have to excuse me for not providing you with any names or pointers, other than the suggestion that from what I know of them, none of them will ever ever speak with you for even a few minutes unless you change your attitude.

    For some things, I have my own version of “Don’t ask, don’t tell.”: don’t ask me, because I won’t tell you. If you want to talk with any nuclear physicists, you’re going to have to find any of them who will talk to you yourself.

  • Bullshit, you could have saved a lot of grief if you had provided refs to support what you are saying before things got ugly, and insulting.

    You confabulate imaginary science, by imaginary scientists. And then you have the audacity to come off like if I had a lick of sense, I would know about the amazing science you just pulled out of your butt? What kind of chicken-shit, cheap-shot is that?

    Your propensity to confabulate non-existent research, by non-existent scientists, to support your arguments, and invalidations, speaks volumes about your integrity. And the validity of your own work.

    You are a liar Ed. Put up or shut up.

  • Mark Boslough’s supercomputer simulations in 2005 at Sandia National Lab proved that the momentum of a meteor arriving at an angle at speeds of about 30 km/s causes the air burst many kilometers high to produce an incandescent plasma jet, not the spherical fireball of a bomb explosion:

    “…Even then — and this is the chief difference between Boslough’s and Crawford’s simulation and previous ones — the fireball continues speeding towards the ground, driving a massive shockwave before it.
    At this point the fireball is moving much slower than the asteroid had been prior to the explosion, but it is still traveling at supersonic speeds.
    And it is the fireball and its accompanying shockwave, say the article’s authors, not the initial bomb-like explosion, which cause most of the damage on the ground….”\
    [ Extracts ]

    “……Recent work by Dr. Mark Boslough 4 shows that the impact physics of NEOs in the 30-100 meter range has been misunderstood due to a process he calls a Low-Altitude Airburst (LAA), which is a newly recognized threat regime that has been previously underestimated.
    In an LAA event the main body of the NEO comes apart at high altitudes (~80 km to ~10 km), but the object’s mass and kinetic energy are conserved as a fast moving, loosely aggregated, collection of particles which entrain a column of air reaching the ground in what might be termed an “air hammer.”
    Dr. Boslough’s work shows that the “air hammer” from NEOs as small as 30 meters inflicts significant damage, as was seen in the 30-meter-class
    Tunguska event.
    Dr. Boslough has also shown that an LAA from a ~100 meter diameter NEO melted sand into glass across a region about 10 km in diameter during Libyan Desert Glass impact ~35 million years ago.
    During this event the LAA’s fireball settled onto parts of Egypt and Libya for about a minute with temperatures approaching 5,000K.
    Its hypersonic blast wave extended radially for about 100 kilometers….”

    I haven’t yet found detailed public information about temperatures, pressures, and durations of the complex turbulent blast jet on the surface.

    Many physicists could probably calculate useful first order estimates, and write software simulations that would give valuable information, enough to estimate the area and depth of geoablation of the ground, and the transport of ejecta in all directions.

    Including angular momentum from the spin of the meteor would require some specialized working experience in using hydrodynamic codes, such as for tornados and hurricanes.

    Existing studies of debris laden tsunamis, underground turbitity currents, and downhill volcanic pyroclastic surface flows are very suggestive:

    “A pyroclastic flow (also known scientifically as a pyroclastic density current[1]) is a fast-moving current of extremely hot gas (which can reach temperatures of about 1,000 °C (1,830 °F)) and rock (collectively known as tephra), which travel away from the volcano at speeds generally as great as 700 km/h (450 mph).[2]
    The flows normally hug the ground and travel downhill, or spread laterally under gravity.
    Their speed depends upon the density of the current, the volcanic output rate, and the gradient of the slope…

    Pyroclastic flows that contain a much higher proportion of gas to rock are known as “fully dilute pyroclastic density currents” or pyroclastic surges.
    The lower density sometimes allows them to flow over higher topographic features such as ridges and hills….

    “Volumes range from a few hundred cubic meters to more than a thousand cubic kilometres.
    The larger ones can travel for hundreds of kilometres, although none on that scale have occurred for several hundred thousand years.
    Most pyroclastic flows are around one to ten cubic kilometres and travel for several kilometres.
    Flows usually consist of two parts: the basal flow hugs the ground and contains larger, coarse boulders and rock fragments, while an extremely hot ash plume lofts above it because of the turbulence between the flow and the overlying air, admixes and heats cold atmospheric air causing expansion and convection. [5]…

    Testimonial evidence from the 1883 eruption of Krakatoa (see the article), supported by experimental evidence,[8]shows that pyroclastic flows can cross significant bodies of water.
    One flow reached the Sumatran coast as much as 48 km (30 mi) away. [9]…”

    “Pyroclastic flows are fluidized masses of rock fragments and gases that move rapidly in response to gravity.
    Pyroclastic flows can form in several different ways.
    They can form when an eruption column collapses, or as the result of gravitational collapse or explosion on a lava dome or lava flow (Francis, 1993 and Scott, 1989).
    These flows are more dense than pyroclastic surges and can contain as much as 80 % unconsolidated material. The flow is fluidized because it contains water and gas from the eruption, water vapor from melted snow and ice, and air from the flow overriding air as it moves downslope (Scott, 1989)…

    Ignimbrites and nuees ardentes are two types of pyroclastic flows. An ignimbite contains mostly vesiculated material whereas a nuee ardente contains denser material (Francis, 1993). …

    Pyroclastic flows can move very fast.
    Small pyroclastic flows can move as fast as 10 to 30 m/s while larger flows can move at rates of 200 m/s (Bryant, 1991).
    Nuees ardentes have been known to extend 50 kilometers from their source, and Ignimbrites, because of the lighter weight material that they carry, can extend 200 km from their source (Bryant, 1991 and Scott, 1989).
    At Mount Pinatubo in the Philipines, pyroclastic flow deposits were 220 m thick in some valleys but averaged 30 to 50 m thick in others (Wolfe, 1992).
    Pyroclastic flows have been known to top ridges 1000 m high (Bryant, 1991)….

    Pyroclastic flows can be very hot.
    In fact, pyroclastic flows from Mount Pelee had temperatures as high as 1075 degrees C (Bryant, 1991)!…”

  • Rather than you guys continuing to yell and scream at each other over your nutty theories, why don’t you go over to my blob and read the last couple of posts on the current subject of the hypothesized Younger Dryas impact. It actually contains some verifiable science about it.

  • I really think that you Dennis, and you Ed should both lighten up! After all, I think we are really on the same page, though perhaps at different places on that page, here at the Cosmic Tusk. Let us remain civil please. I think that both of you have very valuable contributions to be made here.

  • 4 large geoablative melt flow sites west of Carrizozo lava field, New Mexico: Rich Murray 2010.10.30

    33.621280 -106.204255 delicate geoablative flow patterns:
    to the S is an EW dark lava strip (70 m wide NS)
    with long EW flow ridges about 8-17 m apart.

    In Google Earth,
    use Ctrl down arrow or up to tilt the view,
    and Ctrl L arrow or R to rotate,
    and the four arrow keys to move horizontally,
    making it easy to see the 3D shapes of the land.
    Use N to restore the N view.

    The area to the N and E has a road Wsmr S Rt 335 (NS) that ends S at Wsmr P Rt 12 (EW),
    which becomes CR A003 (EW), which goes E across
    the thin middle of Carrizozo lava field
    and then crosses US 54 (NNE).
    Wspr P Rt 9 (NS) is 74 m lower to the W.

    33.709143 -106.145081 classic vertical geoablation ridges

    33.654083 -106.041597 1.692 km el peak
    within huge geoablative melt air blast area

    33.760188 -106.197151 2.061 km el peak
    geoablation melt

  • Thanks Rich,

    Airbursts were only part of it. You are looking in the middle of one of the best kept secrets in the Earth Sciences. The contrast in color between the black lava flow, and the geo-ablative melt that’s been labeled as volcanic tuff is pretty stark.

    But while you’re looking at the terrains in that part of the country why not zoom in close, and show them a few craters. Look a few miles north to 34.211413, -105.970368

    Or, in the same way the best place to hide a tree is in a forest, the best place to hide a large, multiple fragment, crater field is in Karst. You can confuse things a little more, if you have a few bombing ranges in the area. An old school geologist who can’t conceive of a multiple fragment impact storm, won’t even look twice.

    But look in the Karst geology about 45 miles to the east of there at 33.894783, -105.544053. If that’s a sinkhole, at 750 meters diameter, it’s a monster. And since when do karst collapses make two bowl craters?

    Look closely, those aren’t sink holes folks. And they’re not bomb craters either. The two bowl craters like those are predicted in E.M. Drobyshevski’s work on the explosive cosmogony of comets.

    And large cluster events are a part of the postulate if the Taurid complex had anything to do with it.

  • Oops, I hate typo’s, those GPSs are about a mile off. It should have been 33.902835, -105.527273

  • chicken little

    hey thanks for the .my step dad is a nuclear Physicist and Professoor worked for Nasa too in CA (ridgecrest ),., he specializes in fission but I sure bet he can come up with a formula in the close range to answer my questions about eye witnessed and recorded history .
    oh so maybe he can figure out how many mill- mega-tons it will take to stop the earth for 24 hours and how many megga tons it takes to reverse the turn of the earth. and those events witnessed just 28 and 3200 years ago ..
    so maybe he would know how to figure out how big and what effects that meggatons would have to have on the surface of the earth.
    oh and he just might know what kind of effects the radioactivity in those size event might be also..
    i’ll let you know what he says.
    if it is at all interesting!

    thanks for the tips there fellas..

  • chicken little

    I said that wrong it is
    nuclear Fusion physicist ..
    ah fussion …fission

    it’s greek to me…

  • E.P. Grondine

    Dennis –

    Put up or shut up.

    Scaling Laws really exist, and your repeated displays of lack of knowledge of them reveals a lot.

    You keep claiming that your features are from the YD.

    I keep on asking you for two things:
    1) scaling analysis
    2) some kind of dating

    You provide neither.

  • You need to get off that chicken shit cheap shot Ed. As far as I’m concerned, Since it’s an obvious, and feeble attempt at obfuscation, and invalidation, by falsehood. that part of the discussion remains under the confabulated science ‘Put up, or shut up’ catagory Ed.

    I suppose you might think arguements without references are the way science should be done. But I just ain’t buying any of your crap. You give weak excuses like resentment of my ‘bad attitude’ for why no refs. But in the world according to me once someone calls you a liar, and puts your integrity on the line with “Put up, or shut up”, you put up some proof, or you shut up.

    You still haven’t provided any reference to explain how “scaling analysis” might apply to the formation, and emplacement of non-volcanogenic pyroclastic materials. Hell, I’d be happy if you’d just provide the name of just one ‘Nuclear physicist’ who’s been working on the fluid mechanics of such materials. Or on airbursts, and their possible ground effects.

    To the best of my knowledge folks like Mark Boslough, Pete Schultz, Ted Bunch, or Horton Newsom are pretty much the lead scientists on this side of the world, when in comes to impact physics, and airburst melt. They are physicists, but not nuclear physicists. And I’ve never found anything in their work that mentions “scaling laws”, or “scaling analysis”.

    You need to get over the date thing. Since no one has anything but educated guess work, I have no intention of joining that part of the debate.

    I believe that I am looking at the planetary scarring of the YD impacts, among others. If my estimated dates don’t work for you, or jibe with what you think the oral histories tell you, oh well. Take it up with Chief Fart-In-His-Tent.

  • E.P. Grondine

    Scaling and Dating analysis would be useful, Dennis.

    There are other people besides those you mentioned who work on hypervelocity impacts and large explosions.

    Boslough is a nuclear physicist, Dennis, and if you’re going to use his plasma air burst model then RUN IT OUT. You have not provided yet any estimate of blinding or fire range for your plasma flow, nor any blast analysis of over pressures.

    Your hypothesis as to timing does not agree with the dated human survivals and their location. Your migration hypothesis is easily shown to be junk by mt DNA haplogroup distribution.

    In other words, I am not stating that you have not found signs of an impact, but simply that my best estimate is that it most likely is not YD at 10,900 BCE.

    If you can definitively show that it is, I would be pleased along with many others. I would then have to fit my data into that you obtained. But I need dating data, not shouting and arm waving nor insults.

    Put up or shut up.

    Chief Farts in His Tent gave me a message to pass on to you: If you don’t like the peoples, and think that they lie, please go back to Europe.

  • I am Cherokee. It’s not that I think my people lie. But that you do.

    If you are so tired of insults why do you lie? Why do you confabulate non-existent science, by non-existent scientists? And then come back at me like I must be some kind of idiot because I am not aware of the imaginary science you just pulled out of your butt?

    I called you a liar, and told you to put up a ref or shut up. You must have been unaware of that science too. You didn’t answer that charge, and your prolonged silence, and continued refusal to provide a ref that that would end this silly argument once and for all makes your opinions meaningless, and distracting.

    I find your pompous, fraudulently authoritarian, and dismissive attitude offensive. And since you feel no need to restore your academic credibility, I see no need to worry if what I am finding, or my approach to sharing it with the rest of the world, meets with your approval.

    I just don’t give a damn for your opinion anymore.

  • I just would like to say it is a real shame that things beween you Ed, and you Dennis, have deteriorated to such a very low level. I had hoped to see better here at the Cosmic Tusk! It now seems the posts are from the likes of Doc Halliday, unfortunately. Any thoughts on how to resolve the problem and get back to higher ground?

  • E.P. Grondine

    If you are of Cherokee descent, as you claim, then take a look at the traditions of Battle of the Good Spirit and Bad Spirit. Or uktena.

    As far as the non-existence of scaling laws, you have made a mistake. Google “crater diameter” and “explosive force”.

    The best publicly available scaling laws are given in my book, and I told you that. The reference was given, you just choose to ignore it.

    Dennis, I don’t have any problem with Napier’s hypothesis, nor with your description of your features.

    Its simply that we need:
    1) scaling laws run out, in this case Boslough’s
    2) dating – are the features YD?

    You assert that your features come from the most powerful event in 65 million years, but you have no basis for that claim. You haven’t calculated the energy yet by applying scaling laws.

    As far as my credibility goes, others working in the field know it well.

    Why do I put up with your insults? So that they may watch.

    My guess is that your features are is earlier than the YD, but the issue is open yet.

  • Ed

    Sometimes there is a destructive point in an argument when things have progressed to where neither party is really listening to the other. When that point is reached sometimes the only thing to do is just stop.

    Since we have very clearly long since reached that impasse, and both of us are too heavily invested into our life’s work for either of us to walk away, please except my deepest heartfelt apologies for every insult, especially any disparaging remarks to your character.

    It clear that what I am finding is too contentious. Rest assured I’ll keep it closer to my chest in the future.

  • Hi Dennis; I think that was very good of you to apologise! I hope though, you will remain as passionate about your research, Dennis. I do look forward to your findings as to date of the formations you speak of. Cheers, Rod.

  • E.P. Grondine

    Apologies accepted.

    And please don’t let my comments as to dating discourage you from continuing with your search for these features, Dennis. Consider it practice, as you can count on getting plenty of more devastating comments from others who are opposed to comet impact entirely. If you reply to them with insults, it is likely that they will hand you your head.

    I hope we will continue this exchange privately.

  • E.P. Grondine

    There is a point which needs to be made here. Fires caused by IR release have been noted, and modeled to some extent.

    But not so for FLASH BLINDNESS from IR release in ground impacts or air burst events. A blinded animal would most likely not survive, but then that has never been examined species by species.

  • Hi E.P.: In addition to the “Flash Blindness” that you speak of, I think that far more study should also take place in regard to the enigmatic bone beds of Alaska and Siberia. Early science was far more accepting of the cause as a catastrophe. Just as the well adapated creatures may have been instantly blinded, I think too they may well have been instantly frozen. I would also like to see some research into the possibility of this enigmatic event being associated with the onset of the Younger Dryas. That in mind,I have asked Dr. William Napier that assuming for the moment that the Taurids can be blamed. Is it possilbe to determine the time of year that the event took place? Perhpas from some way of backcasting where the Taurids were in relation to Earth at the various times of the year.Dr. Napier has told me that when and if he gets the time this is something he would like to explore further, (perhaps next year, hopefully).

  • E.P. Grondine

    Hi Rod –

    The specific bone beds of Fairbanks, Alaska no longer exist, as they were removed in the hydraulic mining operations that exposed them. Thus their study will have to be done from historical mining materials.

    I don’t know if a sudden northward draining of Glacial Lake Agassiz triggered by impact would account for them, or for the Siberian deposits, but it would seem likely.

  • Steve Garcia

    Rod, as to the time of year for the Y-D impact(s), is there some reason to think it might not be at the normal time of the present Taurid meteor shower, give or take a week or two? That would be the end of June.

  • Steve Garcia

    Ed –

    Alaskan muck fields: I would point out that splintered animal bones from the end of the Pleistocene were found in valleys in Alaska than merely the Fairbanks region. They were found also in at least the Kuskowkim River valley (which empties directly into the Bering Sea) and the Koyukuk River valley (which is further down the Tanana River west of Fairbanks). I have no idea about those other areas being tapped out vis-a-vis research purposes.

    Lake Agassiz emptying northwestward: It just points out how little we know about Lake Agassiz’ emptying, in that the general assumption (which I don’t agree with) is that it emptied to the east, causing the THC to spaz out for a while. Rod knows quite a bit about this. But I would point out that the present topography does not lend itself to Lake Agassiz emptying out to the NW, since in that direction the elevation is considerably higher than central Manitoba.

  • Steve Garcia

    Dennis –

    I happen to agree with Ed, on the dating of your events. Can you give your reasons for connecting them to the Y-D period, vs 3150 BC for example?

  • E.P. Grondine

    Hi Steve –

    Thanks for the info on the other areas. RC dates will be important, as will “autopsies” determining the causes of death.

    We have a possible sizable iron asteroid impact on the west coast of Alaska ca 34,000 BCE (if I remember the date correctly), so some of the splintered bones may be from that. A candidate crater is being looked at there.

    As far as elevations goes, there was an ice sheet at the time. There’s also isostatic rebound to consider.

    Now if I could remember where I placed my coffee…

  • I happen to agree with Ed, on the dating of your events. Can you give your reasons for connecting them to the Y-D period, vs 3150 BC for example?

    To tell you the truth, I like both dates. The Mexican geo-ablative materials describe almost inconceivable violence. And the toughest question there, is to imagine how anything at all could have survived in north central Mexico. So, until I see actual tested dates, I like the Mexican impact zone as a suspect in the Mega faunal extinctions.

    There are thousands of undocumented, but normal, impact craters averaging 100 meters in diameter in west Texas, and eastern New Mexico. Their age is anyone’s guess. But they are all in the same very good condition.

    The Red Rock River valley of southwest Montana has a crater field of oblique impacts coming from the southwest, that can be reliably dated to the late Pleistocene by an ejecta blanket that’s covering an ancient Pleistocene meander of the the river. Those impacts came from a completely different trajectory as either the Mexican zone, or the crater fields in Texas, and New Mexico.

    Whatever hit California came from the southwest too. But while the pristine condition of the burnt facies here in California cries out for a much younger date, the violence thing comes into play again. Central California got blasted pretty hard. So I tend to want to think of it as an extinction event here too.

    So, on one hand, I see compelling evidence of extinction level violence that points to the YD, and the megafaunal extinctions. Yet the burnt facies here in central California are so pristine that if tests come back saying they are only centuries old, I won’t be surprised.

  • Hi Again E.P. and to you Steve, too: First I want to try and answer Ed’s comments. I do think that Steve again has hit the nail on the head. I say this because the drainage for Lake Agassiz I see as primarily contining to flow south via the Mississippi River during the Younger Dryas. Scientists that still maintain meltwater in large amounts moving down the St. Lawrence is pretty much like flogging a dead horse. This is because that route appears to have stll been blocked by ice. Also a couple of studies indicate that the North Atlantic remained relatively saline, (absence of freshwater through the Younger Dryas). As for any kind of northerly route (proposed by Clark and Tarasov and others), it now seems that this way was also blocked by ice. And as for the Great Lake Agassiz draining towards Alaska, this is out of the question too (Steve’s higher topography reason but also other reasons too).Further to the very enigmatic bone beds of Alaska and Siberia too. It is a shame that science was not able to get to the Fairbanks deposits before the gravel extraction took place. But as Steve mentions, there are many other deposits. What is so very intriguing to me is that not just large animals, but many small mammals fell victim to what must have been truly a massive catastrophe,as well. If one examines Dr. Paul La Violette’s book ” Earth Under Fire’ a number of features jump out. P. 208 “It is generally agreed that the animals died from asphixiation, as might occur in drowning.” Another telling comment appears to be – “we may surmise that whatever killed these animals must have overtaken them quite unaware, while they were in the process of grazing, as food as been found between their teeth, and also undigested in their stomachs.” Also, as aside yes it would seem logical that if the taurids were involved then a June impact might have been. Dr. William Napier when I posed this link to him said that 13,000 years ago the Taurids might not have been encountering Earth as today. This is something that he hopes (when and if he gets the time to explore further). Also,”dramatic cooling of the region must have taken place as the carcasses are far from fully decayed.” Radicarbon dates attributed to the bone beds do go from the start of the Younger dryas all the way back to 70,000 BP (more than one event perhaps?) And too, the very high 250 – 600 metre elevation of some of the beds indicates, at least to me, that it was likely tsunami(s) from impact into the Pacific that were cause for the the extrme height of the deposits. Remember too that the sea levels at Younger Dryas times were still well below what they are today.

  • E.P. Grondine

    Hi Dennis –

    This is how science is done:

    If you have not been in direct contact with them already, you should do so.

    Note that they do not claim that Odessa was a comet impact.

    As far as oblique impacts goes, I was on them from the first new Mars imagery.

    As far as scaling laws goes, here they are applied:

    Now since you (like me now) can not invert Boslough’s small comet fragment impact equations, what you need to do is use Purdue’s calculator repeatedly until you come up with results that match each of the features you found, then sum them for a total energy for the event.

    Like I told you before, your features do not appear to match up with the YD accounts handed down to us, nor with the extinction data.

  • E.P. Grondine

    Hi Rod –

    Thanks for the references to those two northern drainage researchers.
    Based om the traditions, I’ll still hold with them, until firm YD data from the North Pacific/Arctic comes in that shows otherwise.

    The elevations were different due to the ice, and the destruction of an ice block is one of the questions. The other is the possibility of an tangential impact mega-tsunami in Glacial Lake Agassiz.

    Blast effects might account for the “asphyxiation”. A sudden northward drainage may well account for the freezing.

    As always, the possibility of different impact events can not be excluded.

    One of the things that irritates me here is that we never did get to discuss the actual distribution of “black mat” materials in this chain, which would have been nice.