Eastern Continental Divide Origin in the Blacksburg, Virginia Area Determined by Topographic Map Interpretation, USA

  •  Eric Clausen    


Published geology literature addresses only a small fraction of the Blacksburg, Virginia region topographic map drainage divide evidence. This situation probably arises because the accepted geology and glacial history paradigm (accepted paradigm) does not explain most topographic map drainage divide evidence (anywhere). A new and fundamentally different geology and glacial history paradigm (new paradigm) which appears to explain most topographic map drainage divide evidence sees the Eastern Continental Divide in the Blacksburg area as being located along the rim of a continental ice sheet created and occupied deep “hole” with the rim being uplifted as immense and prolonged southwest-oriented meltwater floods flowed across the region. From the new paradigm perspective northwest-oriented New River valley headward erosion into the rising deep “hole” rim (from the deep “hole”) upon reaching the Blacksburg region beheaded and reversed southwest-oriented floodwaters (probably aided by deep “hole” rim uplift) to create today’s northeast- and northwest-oriented New River. Headward erosion of the southeast-oriented Roanoke River valley and subsequently the southeast-oriented James River valley (both from the Atlantic Ocean) then created the Roanoke River-New River and James River-New River drainage divides (both are Eastern Continental Divide segments) and the James River-Roanoke River drainage divide by beheading and reversing southwest-oriented floodwaters which had been flowing in diverging and converging channels (which had been eroded headward in northeast directions along less resistant bedrock units from the New River valley). This scenario explains most through valleys (valleys crossed by drainage divides), barbed tributaries, river direction changes, and water gaps seen on Blacksburg area detailed topographic maps and does not see significant changes taking place since the southwest-oriented floods ended. The accepted and new paradigms are incommensurable which according to Thomas Kuhn means one paradigm should not be used to judge the other.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1916-9779
  • ISSN(Online): 1916-9787
  • Started: 2009
  • Frequency: semiannual

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