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By Michael J Moratto; David A Fredrickson

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0 C' .. .... � 12S 122 121 � + � � Ii ,, . 2 Geomorphic provinces of California. Each province is characterized by partic· ular geologic structures and lithologic units and their entailed landforms. After Bailey 1966; Ernst 1979; Jenkins 1 94 1 . ) PHYSIOGRAPHY AND GEOLOGY granitic, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks-is an outlier of the north­ ern Sierra Nevada, but the granitic bedrock linking the two ranges is covered by younger alluvium of the upper Sacramento Valley and vol­ canic extrusives of the Modoc Plateau and Cascade Range (Oakeshott 1971).

When­ ever the oceans receded, terrestrial plants and animals invaded the "off­ shore" realm and established themselves as viable communities. When the ice melted during interglacial and interstadial times, marine waters rose again and flooded coastal zones. 1 ). No less than six Wisconsin ice advances caused ocean levels to fall enough to expose the floor of the Bering Sea-actually a landmass, Beringia, up to 2000 km wide connecting Siberia and Alaska (Hop­ kins 1967). At such times humans and other creatures could have moved easily between the Old and New Worlds.

4). 3). Of archaeological interest are ubiquitous basalt out­ crops, along with deposits of obsidian in the Medicine Lake Highlands (an easterly projection of the Cascades). Both types of rock were prized by the Indians as raw material for chipped-stone tools. 2) and the east­ ern border of the Cascade Range is indefinite in northern California be­ cause the fault systems and rocks characteristic of the two regions are intermingled (Macdonald 1966). The Modoc volcanic platform is actu­ ally the southwestern tip of the great Columbia Plateau that covers much of eastern Oregon, Washington, and southern Idaho.

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