ON-001 Colorado Earthquake and Fault Map


Think you just felt an earthquake??

Check out the USGS Latest Earthquakes Map.

Earthquakes are caused by sudden movements of the earth along a fault. As the rocks on either side of the fault accumulate stress between them, they will eventually overcome friction and slip. The resulting earthquake releases energy in waves that travel through the earth’s crust. These waves can cause noticeable shaking at the surface and, in the case of large earthquakes, damage to roads, buildings, and other infrastructure that may pose a threat to public safety.

Colorado is considered an active tectonic province that is essentially being pulled apart where the Rio Grande Rift cuts north/south across the mountainous, central part of the state. Colorado’s high mountains are a result of uplift on faults (with associated earthquakes) that are part of the rift system. The active landscape of the state—with the still-rising mountains containing thousands of faults—features over 90 potentially active faults and more than 700 recorded earthquakes of magnitude 2.5 or higher since 1867. Colorado experiences fewer and less frequent earthquakes on average than more seismically active states like California and Alaska. However, the state has experienced large natural (magnitude 6.5 or higher) and human-triggered (induced) earthquakes in recorded history and will continue to periodically experience large earthquakes in the future.

ON-006-03 — AM.RD349 Raspberry Shake live linkA direct link to our RaspberryShake seismometer unit located at our laboratory. This site shows many other units located around the world along with their live traces.

ON-006-05 — Seismic Stations in ColoradoIncludes information on seismic stations operated by US Bureau of Reclamation, Colorado Mesa University, the CGS, NEIC, University of New Mexico, and USGS NEHRP.

ON-006-15M — Colorado Earthquake and Fault Mapshows a variety of information including Cenozoic faults. (supersedes publications B-46; B-52; B-52B, and IS-60).

HAZUS simulation: 1882 Earthquake, Rocky Mountain National Park Epicenter M 6.6, CEUS Attenuation

The Earthquake Reference Collection

The ON-002 Earthquake Reference Collection (ON-002 ERC) is a comprehensive library of Colorado-specific reports, maps, documents, and papers examining the geoscience behind earthquakes and faulting around the state. The CGS assembled the collection over many years in the course of our research into the specific geohazards that seismic activity create.

Special Reports

Case Study: The Trinidad, Colorado Earthquakes

[ED: Originally published in 2011 by Vincent Matthews, former State Geologist at the CGS.] Around midnight on August 22, 2011,…

CGS seismometer array

The CGS recently installed the first of five new seismic recording stations that will collect information on seismic events around…

Seismometer installed on campus

Mines students partner with the CGS to install seismometer on campus Colorado School of Mines geophysics students enrolled in Assistant Professor Ebru Bozdag’s…

Trenching the Cheraw Fault in Southeastern Colorado

One of the missions of the CGS is to better understand the various geological risks that face the residents of…

What to do before, during, and after an earthquake

Earthquakes strike suddenly, violently, and without warning. While Colorado is not as seismically active as some places, it does have…

CGS Seismic Stations

Early History The Colorado School of Mines first acquired and installed a single three-component seismograph in the Cecil H. Green…

A few new publications

For those of you who are recent subscribers to the CGS mailing list, we wanted to direct your attention to…

Case Study: Denver – August 9, 1967

Major magnitude 5.3 earthquake shock in Denver   One of the strongest and most economically damaging earthquakes to affect the…

The Great ShakeOut

The origins of The Great ShakeOut project lie, unsurprisingly, in Southern California, one of the more seismically active regions of…

The Great Colorado ShakeOut 2022

It’s coming up in less than four weeks! The Great Colorado ShakeOut is a public earthquake drill that takes place…