Thursday, August 28, 2008

Field Work, Season 1

Somehow, between an apartment move, field camp, and 25 total days on the East Coast, I managed to get some thesis-related field work done this summer. I ate poorly, drank poorly, slept poorly, spent my own money (making me poorer), found my units to be poorly outcropping, and made a poor use of my field time gleefully smashing mosquitoes. But all those were all minor irritants compared to those eureka moments when simple observations about drainages, lithologies, and erosional surfaces came together or when the caloric bounty of corn-beef hash revealed itself in the embrace of a tortilla.

Oftentimes I had to dig out the outcrops. It was time-consuming but worth it.

Next summer I'll hopefully get someone to dangle me down some cliffs.
My clipboard and some maps are still sitting somewhere midslope on that first cliff. Totally unrecoverable but all replaceable.

Besides dropping my belongings down super steep slopes (along with, let's face it, lots of boulders and rocks and anything that looked like it could make a huge sound when it hit bottom), there were some other potential hazards. I found this after hacking through the woods for seven miles:
Hmm, how did those interesting gouges get in to that trun--... ohhhh. I wonder how many geologists have fended off grumpy quadripeds with a rock hammer. I also wonder how many geologists have been killed in landslides.
These gigantic fissures were just back from a 300-foot tall landslide scarp. Trees were tilted at all kinds of crazy angles. Since I'll be spending some time here again next summer, I could very well leave this world as a participant in honest-to-god catastrophic geology. SWEET

The tan lines needed occasional help.

But we all know the real reason I was out there.

The season was remarkably free of fire/smoke and the temperatures were, with few exceptions, almost perfect for field work. Let's hope next summer goes as well. But with better cooking.

3 Comments:

Blogger Deimos said...

Dude, Corned Beef Hash and Rice is the best combination ever. Try it. It's awesome. You don't have to be asian to like it.

9:53 PM  
Blogger joe said...

area man once again exposes himself to the great outdoors.

good one wan...

great pics.

9:13 AM  
OpenID fromthehills said...

I'd give a stranger's left pinkie toe to go with you to some of the places you've been...your pictures are gorgeous... Keep posting!

1:28 PM  

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