I spent a month in Sardegna on a GSA funded project looking for the Permian-Triassic boundary. Unfortunately, the biostratigraphic control was poor, and the typical Mediterranean middle Triassic flooding surface may have destroyed the crucial interval anyway. Instead, I turned my attention to reconstructing the paleoenvironmental conditions that these typical Bundsandstein-type "red beds" formed in. I found no evidence for either desert or monsoon conditions, the two typical interpretations of "red beds," and instead found evidence for humid, temperate conditions using both qualitative and quantitative (see Sheldon et al., 2002) measures. Instead, I propose that red colour is a descriptively useful trait (i.e., well-drained conditions are indicated), but not a genetically useful trait because red paleosols are found in many sites not associated with either deserts or monsoons (Sheldon, 2005, in press Palaeo-3). No figures yet (not published yet), but a few field photos until I post figures.
A field site on the Cala Viola, northwestern Sardegna.
Another view of that same site showing the structural complexity in the area.
A view of the tower section (visible in the picture above) from the other side.
A different site toward the southern end of the field area.