Sunday, December 20, 2009


Last week we saw our first major accumulation of snow. In some places there were reports of four feet! Not so much here, but a blue sky day and new snow that was just aching to be skied on. We climbed up into the basin, and noticed very few ski tracks and a few recent avalanche paths, including this one large slide.
The crown fracture line was just a few feet deep. You can see the major slide and then a smaller sympathetic slide right next door.
The debris crossed the valley, all the way to the small drainage.
A little over exposed (I don't know who left the setting at 1600ISO?) But this gives a better idea of the size of the event. We skied a little closer and then turned around and went someplace safer.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

traveling meme

Well I haven't posted for quite some time due to some family traveling, with night time flying and events where it would be extremely bad form to photograph any surrounding outcrops.

Most of my field trips are close to home, the San Juan Mountains in SW Colorado and the red rock canyon country of Utah. I will also admit that most of the geology I do is done on the back of a mountain bike. My wife calls in recreation, but I am convinced we are doing real science.

This year, along with visiting my usual nearby haunts, there were three trips further afield. In April, my first trip to Hawaii! June saw us visiting Yosemite. Much of August and September was in New England helping family members.

Skiing near Red Mountain Pass last January
The black sands of Hawaii during spring break
Eye of the Whale arch in Arches National Park
Exploring Keg Spring Canyon and finding some great examples of late Paleozoic petrified logs.
Iconic Yosemite valley
Teaching a field class while floating the Colorado River.
Riding in Crested Butte. Great flowers among spectacular mountains.
The Colorado River flowing through an anticline.
As each year progresses, the to do list for the next year gets longer. 2010 is no exception. Hopefully there will be lots of time in the field, because as every geologist knows, life is a field trip.