A tropical paleosol at high elevation in the Yulong Mountains and its implication on the uplift of the Tibetan Plateau

Research paper by Zhengtang Guo, Xiaofeng Yao, Xitao Zhao, Lanying Wei

Indexed on: 01 Jan '01Published on: 01 Jan '01Published in: Chinese science bulletin = Kexue tongbao


A paleosol dated for about 500–700 kaBP and developed on a glacial deposit at ∼3 000 m a.s.l. in the Yulong Mountains is studied using soil chemical, morphological and mineralogical methods. The analytical results indicate that this soil was formed under tropical and humid conditions and can be classified as red soil, which cannot be formed in the present alpine environment at the studied site. This implies that the southeast margin of the Tibetan Plateau has experienced intense uplift since the formation of the paleosol. According to the necessary conditions for the formation of the modern red soil in China, we estimate that the uplift height of the Plateau since 500–700 kaBP would have exceeded 800 m.