Cation-ratio and accelerator radiocarbon dating of rock varnish on Mojave artifacts and landforms

View publication


The first accelerator radiocarbon dates of rock varnishes are reported along with potassium/argon ages of lava flows and conventional radiocarbon dates of pluvial lake shorelines, in an empirical calibration of rock varnish K + + Ca2+/Ti4+ ratios with age in the Mojave Desert, eastern California. This calibration was used to determine the cation-ratio dates of 167 artifacts. Although cation-ratio dating is an experimental method, some dates suggest human occupation of the Mojave Desert in the late Pleistocene.