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Episodes 2020; 43(1): 381-403

Published online March 1, 2020


Copyright © International Union of Geological Sciences.

Mio-Pliocene Tectonics and Exhumation Histories of the NW– and NE–Himalaya

*R.C. Patel and Manmohan

National Facility Lab on Low-Temperature Thermochronology (Fission Track Dating), Department of Geophysics, Kurukshetra University, Kurukshetra-136 119

Correspondence to:R.C. Patel; Email: patelramesh_chandra@rediffmail.com)

Received: December 10, 2018; Revised: August 10, 2019; Accepted: August 10, 2019

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The collisional Himalayan orogen is commonly presented as largely laterally uniform from the NW– to NE–Himalaya, with almost similar geological and tectonic settings. Despite active continuous convergence and precipitation since many million years in the Himalaya, thermochronological/cooling age pattern, uplift and exhumation rates vary in different parts of NW– and NE–Himalaya as a function of structural positions such as dome/window/synform, klippen/nappe structures and thrusting/back-thrusting along different major faults. These surface structures appear to reflect the geometry and kinematics of the Main Himalayan Thrust (MHT) and duplex structures formed over the ramp of the MHT. These observations suggest that in this tectonically-active setting characterized by steep topography and intense storms, thermochronological/cooling age pattern and exhumation patterns do not mirror precipitation gradients or drive deformation on million-year timescales. Rather, exhumation patterns are controlled by local tectonics that is dictated by the subsurface geometry of the MHT and its associated structures.