Update #2

Its July 7, and I’m off for another three weeks. This time I will have no electricity so I don’t know if I will be able to keep a log or anything. We’ll see. Here is the last of what I had from the last camp:


Friday, June 24, 2005

Its friday, but it seems like a Monday because we just had a day off and we have to start a new mapping project today. We are now going to start mapping Block Mountain, which is, from what I understand, geologically more complex and has more vertical distance to run up and down. Super. Its near Frying Pan Gulch, so I’m assuming it has the same barren desert-like landscape.

Yesterday was nice. I was able to catch up on all my email and talk to some of my friends. Bozeman is a nice town. A nice change of pace to what we’ve been dealing with. It seems like the upscale, touristy area of Montana. They had lots of high end clothing shops, art galleries and such that you probably wouldn’t find anywhere else in Montana.

I still have the reminants of two cactus needles in my right index and middle finger tips. They are still sore.

I have to get the map for the new area this morning and outline exactly what our field area will be. I’m also trying to limit my caloric intake at breakfast and lunch. I’m burning way more calories, but I’m also consuming more as well. We’ll see how this works for a few days. I’ll aslo have to increase my water consumption significantly.

Sunday June 26, 2005

I had no update yesterday because I went to sleep really early, which I also did on Friday. Yesterday we got stuck in a hail storm with marble sized hail. It hurt like hell. I got hit in the head several times and there was no where we could take shelter. Its about 7:30am right now and its raining again. Given how things have operated thus far, I can only assume we will be sent out into the rain. Rain itself isn’t so bad, but at this elevation the rain is very cold and it hails very easily. Also, in our mapping area, there are lots of gullys and creeks which come alive during rainstorms which make moving difficult. Wet rocks with moss are also slippery.

After today, we have 2 days of mapping left in Block Mountain, then the field exam, then an office day, and I think we then leave on Friday. We stay overnight on Friday at Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota.

Unless today gets called on account of rain, we will have gotten one day off in 23 days on this trip.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Its about 8pm on Monday evening. We have one more day in the field and one more day for the field exam, and then we’re done…until advanced field camp starts.

My feet are killing me every day. The rest of my body isn’t tired or sore in any way anymore, just my feet. It feels better to walk in my sandals than it does to walk in my boots.

Today we had a sudden thunderstorm with hail and lightening. It lasted about 15 min total. It was a very cool storm cloud. It was circular and looked like the big UFO’s from Independence Day. I took some photos and hopefully they came out.

I have several sets of photos I’ve taken where if I can stitch them together I will be able to make panoramic photos.

The schedule we kept for this camp was pretty brutal. One day off in 23. The other schools we saw in the field didn’t seem to be doing anything this extreme. Its something I hope they look at for next year. I’m really hoping that advanced camp doesn’t keep a schedule anywhere close to this. Living outside for three weeks with crappy living conditions would only make it worse.

I think we have most of our map for Block Mountain done. There are some spots which are really messed up and folded back upon itself.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

I’m done with Block Mountain. Just the field examp tomorrow, and I’m not too worried about that. Its 3/4 of a section area (1 sq mile) and all day to do it. I removed my gel insoles and replaced with them with the ones that came with the shoe and my feet felt better today. Granted, I also didn’t walk as much, but I think the lack of a insole sliding around in my shoe was key.

We have this evening, next evening, and all of Thursday to finish the Block Mountain map, of which, we are farther along with at this point than we were with Frying Pan Gulch.

By Gary

3 dimples. 7 continents. 130 countries.