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Colored shaded relief bathymetry and acoustic backscatter of Ozette Lake, Washington

June 11, 2024

Offshore of the Pacific Northwest of the United States is the Cascadia Subduction Zone, a 1,000-kilometer-long tectonic boundary defined by a large fault, called a megathrust, that extends from the Mendocino Junction off northern California to the Nootka Fracture Zone off Vancouver Island, Canada (U.S. Geological Survey, 2023). The Juan de Fuca and Gorda oceanic plates to the west of this boundary subduct under the North America continental plate to the east. Several other smaller faults that cut through the North America plate crust also affect the region. Although their effects upon Ozette Lake are uncertain, geological evidence for past earthquakes, such as underwater landslides, may be found in Pacific Northwest lakes.

Underwater landslides caused by past earthquakes should be well preserved in these relatively undisturbed lake environments. The floor of Ozette Lake, Washington, located along the Pacific coast of the United States, west of the Puget Sound region and about 140 kilometers east of the megathrust was mapped by the U.S. Geological Survey in July of 2019 to search for evidence of past earthquakes. Mapping was completed using a SWATHplus-M 234-kHz interferometric side scan sonar system pole-mounted on the U.S. Geological Survey research vessel San Lorenzo. The system collected full-coverage bathymetric and acoustic backscatter data that were processed to 2-meter spatial resolution (Dartnell and others, 2024). This two-map series displays the results of this mapping. A colored shaded relief bathymetry map (sheet 1) and an acoustic backscatter map (sheet 2) show the lake floor morphology and backscatter intensities, respectively, that can be analyzed for evidence of past earthquakes.

Publication Year 2024
Title Colored shaded relief bathymetry and acoustic backscatter of Ozette Lake, Washington
DOI 10.3133/sim3517
Authors Peter Dartnell, Daniel S. Brothers, Andrew C. Ritchie, Brian L. Sherrod, Jackson E. Currie, Peter Dal Ferro, David C. Powers
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Scientific Investigations Map
Series Number 3517
Index ID sim3517
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Earthquake Science Center; Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center; Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center