- Get Involved
CAPROCK. The cap, or hard layer, underlying the Llano Estacado is a major geological feature known to Texans as the Caprock. It is not a rock layer in the usual sense of the term but is more technically a "hard-pan" layer that developed a few feet below the ground as highly mineral subsoil particles cemented themselves together to form a rock-like layer that resists erosion. Although the name Caprock technically applies only to the formation itself, the expression is often loosely used to mean the whole Llano Estacado. The Caprock escarpment was formed by erosion about one million to two million years ago. Prehistoric nomadic hunters, Plains Apaches, and Comanches lived in the region. The Spanish explorer Vásquez de Coronadoqv traveled the area in 1541. The Caprock escarpment forms a natural boundary line between the High Plains and the lower rolling plains of West Texas. It stretches from the Panhandle into Central Texas and can be seen most prominently in Briscoe, Floyd, Motley, Dickens, Crosby, Garza, and Borden counties, where it reaches its highest elevations, rising abruptly above the plains at 200, 500, or as much as 1,000 feet. The east-facing wall is often cut by rivers, forming canyons such as Palo Duro Canyon.
Image Use Disclaimer
All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, H. Bailey Carroll, "Caprock," accessed April 24, 2018, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/rxc01.
Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.