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U.S. Geological Survey
Miscellaneous Field Studies Map MF-2427

Geologic Map of the Lower Grand Wash Cliffs and Vicinity, Mohave County, Northwestern Arizona

By George H. Billingsley, L. Sue Beard, Susan S. Priest, Jessica L. Wellmeyer, and Debra L. Block

Prepared in cooperation with the National Park Service and the Bureau of Land Management


This map area is mostly in the Grand Wash trough of the Basin and Range Province and partly in the Grand Wash Cliffs and the Grand Gulch Bench (Sanup Plateau on large-scale maps) of the Colorado Plateaus Province, all in northwestern Arizona. Grand Wash is the principal drainage for the Grand Wash trough, which is bounded by the Grand Wash Cliffs on the east, the Virgin Mountains on the north (not in map area), the South Virgin Mountains on the west (not in map area), and Lake Mead on the south (southwest edge of map). Grand Wash drains southward toward the Colorado River that is now covered by Lake Mead.

The map area is in a remote region known as the Arizona Strip in northwestern Arizona about 20 mi north of Meadview, Arizona, the nearest settlement. Elevations range from about 6,748 ft on the Grand Gulch Bench (east-central edge of map area) to about 1,200 ft at Grand Wash (southwest corner of map area). Primary vehicle access is by dirt road and unimproved jeep trails that traverse various parts of the map area, except within the Grand Wash Wilderness Area of the Grand Gulch Bench (northeast corner of map area). Maps, extra fuel, two spare tires, and extra food and water are highly recommended when traveling in this remote region along with local U.S. Geological Survey 7.5 (topographic quadrangle maps (Grand Gulch Bench, Gyp Hills, Olaf Knolls, and Pakoon Springs) to accompany this map.

Most of the map area is in the Grand Canyon Parashant National Monument, which is managed by the Bureau of Land Management through the Arizona Strip District Office in St. George, Utah. The southern part of the map area includes part of the Lake Mead National Recreation Area managed by the National Park Service at Boulder City, Nevada. The Grand Wash Cliffs Wilderness Area (northeast edge of map area) was designated in 1984 and is administrated by the Bureau of Land Management in St. George, Utah. Grand Canyon National Park lands are about 4 mi southeast of the map area.

The Grand Gulch Bench area supports a sparse growth of sagebrush, cactus, grass, cliffrose bush, and Joshua, pinyon, and juniper trees. At lower elevations in the Grand Wash trough, a variety of sparse desert shrubs, grass, cactus, and Joshua trees are present.


page size image of geologic map of Lower Grand Wash Cliffs and vicinity
Page-size version of geologic map of Lower Grand Wash Cliffs and vicinity.


File Name
File Type and Description
File Size
Readme file that gives information about the digital database
4 Kb
Text file of the FGDC-compliant metadata
40 Kb
Compressed tar file of the digital database for this map
15.1 MB (expands to 245 MB)
PDF file of pamphlet to accompany this map 280 KB
PDF file of map sheet that can be used for viewing map in a browser, as well as for plotting
32.9 MB

For questions about the content of this report, contact George Billingsley

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Maintained by: Michael Diggles
Created: October 4, 2004
Last modified: May 26, 2005 (mfd)