Here is a field guide to cool places in the Chuckanut Formation. I will add new places to visit over time, and really welcome your contributions. Please include good photos, with something for scale. Photos need to be around 700-800 pixels in the large dimension, at 72 dpi.
Field trips are:
Raptor Ridge (added 11/23/2011)
Teddy Bear Cove conglomerate on Chuckanut Bay.
The fossil fields of the Racehorse Creek landslide, near Kendall in the North Fork Nooksack.
The geology of Squires Lake and Alger Alp.
Alternating thin beds of sandstone and conglomerate at West Point, Lummi Island.
A large slab of glacially striated sandstone off San Juan Blvd, east edge of Bellingham. GONE
A flood-scoured gorge at Silver Creek, near the north end of Lake Samish. Great sedimentary structures, and a lovely high waterfall.
A layer of tuff (volcanic ash) at Clayton Beach, along Chuckanut Drive; reveals a volcanic eruption 50 million years ago.
The January 2009 deep-seated Racehorse Creek landslide; the largest of the many in the region.
Honey comb weathering (tafoni); beautiful weathering structures along the Chuckanut coast.
Landslides along Chuckanut Drive (WA State Route 11) and how they are repaired.
The Eocene Chuckanut Formation consists of a phenomenally thick sequence (9000 m!) of alluvial sandstone, conglomerate, mudstone, and coal, originally deposited in flood plains in subsiding basins near the coast of Washington- or at least, where the coast was around 50,000,000 years ago. Sediment sources were the highlands of the Rocky Mountains and the southern interior of British Columbia. Deposition was prior to growth of the Cascade arc or subduction-accretion of the Crescent Terrane (broadly, the Olympic Peninsula rocks). Orogeny of the Cascade Range effectively shut off the sediment supply. Docking of the Crescent Terrane deformed the Chuckanut sedimentary rocks. Most people know that Chuckanut rocks are found in west-central Whatcom County. However, scattered units of these rocks also extend along the Darrington-Devil’s Mountain fault zone through Skagit and Snohomish Counties. Visits to sites in these less well-known localities will be included here as well. A succinct introduction to the Chuckanut is “Geology and paleontology of the early Tertiary Chuckanut Formation” by G. Mustoe, R. Dilhoff, and T. Dillhoff, 2007. This appears in the 2007 Cordilleran GSA Field Guide, Floods, Faults, and Fire: Geological Field Trips in Washington State and Southwest British Columbia.