Geology Cafe

San Andreas Fault Zone

The San Andreas Fault is only a part of the Greater California Fault System. However, the San Andreas Fault is perhaps the most studied fault, largely because of its legacy associated with the destruction of San Francisco Earthquake in 1906 and the Loma Prieta Earthquake of 1989. Unfortunately, the focus on the San Andreas Fault often veils attention that might otherwise focus on other potentially hazardous earthquake faults in the region.

Selected resources about the San Andreas Fault:

The San Andreas Fault: U.S. Geological Survey General Interest Publication: and (1993).
This is a general introduction to the San Andreas Fault (a good overview of the fault and associated hazards).

The San Andreas Fault System, California
: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1515 Edited by Robert E. Wallace (1990). This is a historically significant technical report that provides a significant overview of the fault.

Where is the San Andreas Fault? A Guidebook to Tracing the Fault on Public Lands in the San Francisco Bay Region

The introduction to this guidebook provides an overview about Bay Area earthquakes and geology.

Where’s the Hayward Fault? A Green Guide to the Fault
: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2008-1135. The Hayward Fault is considered a part of the San Andreas Fault System, and is potentially more hazardous than the SAF in the San Francisco Bay region.

The San Andreas Fault System on public lands:
Point Reyes National Seashore
San Juan Bautista Area
(San Benito County, central California)
Pinnacles National Park
Carrizo Plain National Monument
Joshua Tree National Park, Coachella Valley Preserve, and Painted Canyon Geologic Area
(southern California)

Where to get more information about earthquake faults in California:
Earthquake Hazards Program (U.S. Geological Survey)
Southern California Earthquake Center

Map of the Greater California Fault System.
General geologic map showing major faults of the Greater California Fault System (including the San Andreas Fault and associated faults).