Field Geology in the Rockies

2018 Geology Field Camp @Concord University 

[Sorry - we are now full and closed to outside enrollment this year]

Photo: Some of the 2013 field camp participants on the summit of Mt. Elbert (14,439 ft) - the highest peak in the Rocky Mountains and the second highest peak in the contiguous United States. Photo courtesy of Sheena Harper Photography.

General Information:

How do geologists know what they know about geologic time and physical processes that operate on Earth? The answer lies buried within the Earth's rock record. Concord's field course addresses these questions by helping you develop an understanding of field research and how it is connected to data derived in the laboratory. Our field camp will help you develop an understanding of field relations, geologic processes, and geologic time by engaging in geologic mapping.

The Concord University geology field camp is offered for 6 semester hours and includes approximately 5 weeks of field work from mid-May to late June in Colorado and Utah. The course emphasizes geologic mapping at 4-6 different field sites using both traditional and digital methods with iPad’s (provided to participants). Students will also construct cross sections, utilize stereographic projections of structural data, and write interpretive reports for each field area.  

The first half of the course emphasizes development of mapping and field skills in faulted and folded Paleozoic and Mesozoic sedimentary strata at sites in central and western Colorado, including Glenwood Canyon, Gunnison-Crested Butte, and Colorado National Monument. We will also work on a short project at Arches and Canyonlands National Parks near Moab, Utah. The second half of the course is based in Leadville, Colorado, where we work on a project with Eocene volcanic rocks, and original research and mapping in Precambrian fault zones developed in metamorphic and igneous rocks in the Sawatch Range. Regional field trips are scheduled between exercises to examine the geological evolution of the Rocky Mountains and Colorado Plateau.

Lodging typically entails about 60% camping and 40% college dorms or cabins. Except for 2-3 nights, all locations have laundry services, showers, and Wi-Fi on site. 

Prerequisites: 16 hours in geology, including one year of introductory geology (Geol 101 and Geol 202) and two or more upper-level lab courses in geology (Geol 369 - Earth Materials and Minerals, and Geol 385 - Structural Geology are recommended). Enrollment by students outside of Concord University is not available this year.

For additional information, contact:

Dr. J.L. Allen
[send email to: allenj (type at symbol) concord.edu]
Environmental Geosciences Program 
Concord University, Athens, WV 24712
304-384-5238

COST: TBA

Initial $250 down payment due Feb. 28, 2018, payable to CU Research & Development Corp. (unless other arrangements have been made). Down payment for external applicants is due upon acceptance. 

Photos: Left, 2011 field camp experiencing a beach-worthy day at Independence Pass, Colorado; Right, Arches National Park, Utah.