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Ganado Mesa deposits, Ganado, Sanders-Defiance Plateau area (Sanders-Cheto District), Apache Co., Arizona, USAi
Regional Level Types
Ganado Mesa depositsMesa
Sanders-Defiance Plateau area (Sanders-Cheto District)Area
Apache Co.Mine

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Lock Map
Latitude & Longitude (WGS84):
35° 47' 30'' North , 109° 32' 57'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal):
Locality type:
Nearest Settlements:
Burnside537 (2011)8.1km
Ganado1,210 (2011)8.9km
Nazlini489 (2011)14.7km
Cornfields255 (2011)19.4km
Steamboat284 (2011)27.3km

A bentonite deposit located in secs. 22 & 23, T1N, R10W, NM, 8.9 km (5.6 miles) N of Ganado. This a generalized location encompassing about 5 deposits.

Mineralization is a clay deposit hosted in Pliocene tuff of the Bidahochi Formation.The bentonite resulted from the alteration of vitric tuff. Local rocks include Pliocene to middle Miocene deposits.

Production is an estimate for 5 deposits that produced between 10 and 75 long tons each and included some float ore.

Regions containing this locality

North America PlateTectonic Plate
Colorado Plateau, USAPlateau
Navajo Nation Indian Reservation, USAReservation
Hopi-Navajo Indian Reservations, Colorado Plateau, Apache; Navajo and San Juan Cos., Arizona & Utah, USA

Select Mineral List Type

Standard Detailed Strunz Dana Chemical Elements

Commodity List

This is a list of exploitable or exploited mineral commodities recorded at this locality.

Mineral List

1 valid mineral.

Detailed Mineral List:

Formula: (Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
Description: Occurs in linear channels & lens-like bodies underlying the upper member of the Bidahochi Formation, derived from volcanic tuff.
Reference: Anthony, J.W., et al (1995), Mineralogy of Arizona, 3rd.ed.: 304; Kiersch, G.A. & W.D. Keller (1955b), Bleaching clay deposits, Sanders-Defiance Plateau district, Navajo Co., Arizona, Econ.Geol.: 50: 469-494.
Montmorillonite var: Calcium-Montmorillonite
Formula: Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near
Description: Occurs in linear channels & lens-like bodies underlying the upper member of the Bidahochi Formation, derived from volcanic tuff.
Reference: Anthony, J.W., et al (1995), Mineralogy of Arizona, 3rd.ed.: 304; Kiersch, G.A. & W.D. Keller (1955b), Bleaching clay deposits, Sanders-Defiance Plateau district, Navajo Co., Arizona, Econ.Geol.: 50: 469-494.

List of minerals arranged by Strunz 10th Edition classification

Group 9 - Silicates
Montmorillonite9.EC.40(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
var: Calcium-Montmorillonite9.EC.40Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near

List of minerals arranged by Dana 8th Edition classification

Group 71 - PHYLLOSILICATES Sheets of Six-Membered Rings
Sheets of 6-membered rings with 2:1 clays
Montmorillonite71.3.1a.2(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
Unclassified Minerals, Mixtures, etc.
var: Calcium-Montmorillonite-Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near

List of minerals for each chemical element

H Montmorillonite (var: Calcium-Montmorillonite)Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near
H Montmorillonite(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
O Montmorillonite (var: Calcium-Montmorillonite)Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near
O Montmorillonite(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
Na Montmorillonite(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
Mg Montmorillonite(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
Al Montmorillonite (var: Calcium-Montmorillonite)Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near
Al Montmorillonite(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
Si Montmorillonite (var: Calcium-Montmorillonite)Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near
Si Montmorillonite(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O
Ca Montmorillonite (var: Calcium-Montmorillonite)Ca(Ca3,Al2)Si5O10(OH)8 or near
Ca Montmorillonite(Na,Ca)0.33(Al,Mg)2(Si4O10)(OH)2 · nH2O

Regional Geology

This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.

Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on

Gelasian - Burdigalian
1.806 - 20.44 Ma

ID: 2850061
Pliocene to middle Miocene deposits

Age: Cenozoic (1.806 - 20.44 Ma)

Description: Moderately to strongly consolidated conglomerate and sandstone deposited in basins during and after late Tertiary faulting. Includes lesser amounts of mudstone, siltstone, limestone, and gypsum. These deposits are generally light gray or tan. They commonly form high rounded hills and ridges in modern basins, and locally form prominent bluffs. Deposits of this unit are widely exposed in the dissected basins of southeastern and central Arizona. (2-16 Ma)

Comments: In dissected basins of southeast and central Arizona Original map source: Arizona Geological Survey, DI-8 Geologic Map of Arizona, Digital Spatial data for the Geologic Map of Arizona, v. 3.0, edited by S.M. Richard and S.M. Kneale, 2002, 10 p., 2 DOS HD disks. Arc/INFO export file (.e00) format, scale 1:1,000,000.

Lithology: Major:{conglomerate,sandstone}, Minor:{mudstone,siltstone,limestone,gypsum}

Reference: Horton, J.D., C.A. San Juan, and D.B. Stoeser. The State Geologic Map Compilation (SGMC) geodatabase of the conterminous United States. doi: 10.3133/ds1052. U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1052. [133]

Early Jurassic - Late Triassic
174.1 - 237 Ma

ID: 3185972
Mesozoic sedimentary rocks

Age: Mesozoic (174.1 - 237 Ma)

Lithology: Sandstone-conglomerate

Reference: Chorlton, L.B. Generalized geology of the world: bedrock domains and major faults in GIS format: a small-scale world geology map with an extended geological attribute database. doi: 10.4095/223767. Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 5529. [154]

Data and map coding provided by, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License


Sort by

Year (asc) Year (desc) Author (A-Z) Author (Z-A)
Kiersch, G.A. & W.D. Keller (1955b), Bleaching clay deposits, Sanders-Defiance Plateau district, Navajo County, Arizona, Economic Geology: 50: 469-494.
Kiersch, G.A. (1955), Mineral resources Navajo-Hopi India Reservations, Arizona-Utah, Vol. II, University of Arizona: 25.
Peirce, H.W. (1990), Arizona Geological Survey, Industrial Minerals card file.
Anthony, J.W., et al (1995), Mineralogy of Arizona, 3rd. ed.: 304.
USGS (2005), Mineral Resources Data System (MRDS): U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia, loc. file ID #10099376.
USGS crib list record #TC00231.

USGS MRDS Record:10099376
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