Letter | Published:

Tectonic and sedimentary significance of Cretaceous Tekenika Beds of Tierra del Fuego

Naturevolume 266pages620622 (1977) | Download Citation



STRATA called Tekenika Beds have been considered the oldest post-orogenic rocks within the southernmost Andean Cordillera. Their significance in terms of regional tectonic history outweighs their small outcrop area on the east side of Hardy Peninsula on Hoste Island, Chile, about 160 km north-northwest of Cape Horn (Fig. 1). The Tekenika Beds, which are 2–3 km thick, are best known on Burleigh Peninsula on the south side of Tekenika Bay (Tekenika derives from two Yahgan Indian words Teke uneka1), where they are largely sandstone and conglomerate (Figs 1 and 2). The basal contact has not been seen; however, the strata, although folded (ref. 2 and unpublished reports of Empresa National del Petroles), are less deformed than the tightly folded Lower Cretaceous Yahgan Formation just north of Tekenika Bay less than 5 km away. Therefore an unconformity is implied. Coarseness of the strata, fossil wood (some bored by worms or molluscs), thin lignitic coal beds, shallow marine molluscs and presence of some plutonic clasts led to the view that the Tekenika is a nearshore, post-orogenic sequence2. Suarez and Pettigrew recognise it as pre-orogenic, but still interpret it as a shallow marine deposit3. We report here structural evidence indicating that the Tekenika Beds are pre-orogenic and deep water deposits.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    Bridges, E. L. Uttermost Part of the Earth, 4th edn, 558 (Hodder and Stoughton, London, 1963).

  2. 2

    Halpern, M. & Rex, D. C. Bull. geol. Soc. Am. 83, 1881–1886 (1972).

  3. 3

    Suarez, M. & Pettigrew, T. H. Geol. Mag. 113, 305–400 (1976).

  4. 4

    Iddings, A. & Olson, A. A. Bull. Am. Ass. Petrol. Geol. 12, 1–39 (1928).

  5. 5

    Dalziel, I. W. D., Dott, R. H., Jr, Winn, R. D., Jr & Bruhn, R. L. Bull. Geol. Soc. Am. 86, 1034–1040 (1975).

  6. 6

    Bruhn, R. L. dissertation, Columbia Univ., 60 (1976).

  7. 7

    Bruhn, R. L. & Dalziel, I. W . D. in Maurice Ewing, Series I, Island Arcs, Deep Sea Trenches and Back-Arc Basins (eds Talwani, M. & Pitman III, W. C.) (Am. Geophys. Un., in the press).

  8. 8

    Suarez, M. Geology 4, 211–214 (1976).

  9. 9

    Winn, R. D., Jr. & Dott, R. H., Jr. A Mtg Abstr., Am. Ass. petrol. geol. and Soc. Econ. Paleont. Miner. 82 (1975).

  10. 10

    Winn, R. D., Jr. dissertation, Univ. Wisconsin (1975).

  11. 11

    Winn, R. D., Jr. & Dott, R. H. Submarine Canyon and Fan Sedimentation (eds Stanley, D. J. & Kelling, G.) (Dowden, Hutchinson & Ross, in the press); A Meeting Abstr. Am. Ass. petrol. Geol, 127 (1976).

Download references

Author information


  1. Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin, 53706

    • R. H. DOTT JR
    •  & R. D. WINN JR
  2. Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory, Columbia University, Palisades, New York, 10964

    • M. J. DEWIT
    •  & R. L. BRUHN


  1. Search for R. H. DOTT JR in:

  2. Search for R. D. WINN JR in:

  3. Search for M. J. DEWIT in:

  4. Search for R. L. BRUHN in:

About this article

Publication history



Issue Date



Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.