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The geology is in turn inextricably entwined with Colorado's human history.
That's true everywhere, of course, but it goes double here.
After an introductory section, Colorado's geologic history will unfold in chronological order below.
As we come up on major divisions along the geologic timeline, a brief "About Time" header will summarize what event or fossil record breakpoint ushered in the upcoming division and show how it's subdivided.
The table below collects the links to these headers.
Our usually reliable day-to-day sensibilities tell us that such things can't happen, but they can and do happen because solid rock reveals its malleability only over time scales very long compared to human eventstypically in spans of tens of thousands if not millions of years.This geologic overview focuses primarily on the Colorado Rockies and the Colorado Plateau, but adjoining portions of Wyoming, Utah and the High Plains as far east as the Black Hills of South Dakota also have important and related stories to tell.Throughout this article, I'll refer to Colorado and these adjoining areas as our region of interest, which closely coincides both with the area shown in the NASA photo at Bearings just below and also with the area affected by Laramide uplift.The entire Mesozoic Era (295 Ma long) shot by in under an hour, the dinosaurs departed just 20 minutes ago (thank goodness), and we've been comfy and relatively ice-free for only a mere 0.2 seconds.A healthy human female can expect to live just under 2 milliseconds in a developed country.