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Objectives:
Given information on the geological history and the main tectonic processes occurring along the San Andreas Fault system, you will be able to explain what’s happening geologically along the fault at the present time.

Procedures: We will meet two times: 1) in class (Monday, March 14th); and for the trip (Thursday through Sunday, March 17th 20th). The pre-trip meeting will cover information on what to bring, what to expect, and what to turn in for credit. We will also cover some information on the geological background of the San Andreas fault system to prepare us for the trip. A trip itinerary will be given.  THIS IS A MANDATORY MEETING - IF YOU ARE UNABLE TO ATTEND YOU MAY NOT BE ALLOWED TO GO ON THE TRIP.

Itinerary

Thursday, March 17th: We will meet at the dorms on campus so that you may have a place to leave your vehicles for three days. Loading time will begin at 7:30 am and we will leave shortly thereafter, once all heads have been counted and gear loaded. We will then head west across the Central Valley to the city of Hayward to see the Hayward Fault as it cuts through the city.  We will then drive to Mt. Diablo State Park, where we will examine the geology of the area.  We will camp in the park that night and break camp in the morning, leaving by 8 am.  Pack a lunch for that day with plenty of water for the day.

Friday, March 18th:  We will head south to the town of Hollister to examine the Calaveras fault as it slices through town and walk along the fault trace. We will then make a stop along the fault near the town of San Juan Bautista, twelve miles to the northwest to further examine features associated with strike-slip faulting. We’ll eat lunch on the fault scarp in San Juan Bautista, next to the mission. After lunch we will drive southeast to visit sites of mass wasting and erosion in order to examine details of those geologic processes. We will then continue along Cienega road and Highway 25, south of Hollister toward the Pinnacles campground visiting a few more points of tectonic interest before arriving at the campgrounds to set up camp for the evening. We should arrive at camp around 5 pm.

Saturday, March 19th: After breakfast, we will load onto the bus at 8am. We will drive into the Pinnacles National Monument Saturday morning and hike through part of the Monument to examine the geology of the area.  We will then head back toward Hollister and the San Andreas fault for a stop at the Cienega/Calera winery to view the effects of fault creep on the building. We will end up back at the Pinnacles campground for a walk along the creek to observe the effects of flooding on the campground. The walk will highlight some of the channel changes that have resulted from the effects of El Nino. We will end the day after the walk, camping at the campground for the second night (Saturday).

Sunday, March 20th: We will pack up and leave by 8:00 am Sunday morning. There will be severa stops along the way back. We will drive south along Highway 25 toward Highway 198, which connects King City with Coalinga. There are several sites along Highway 25 that are pretty amazing examples of mass wasting or landsliding. We will be driving through the San Andreas rift valley until we reach Highway 198 where we will turn left (east), heading toward Coalinga. The town is situated on a blind thrust fault that produced a moderate, damaging earthquake, which destroyed 75% of the buildings in the downtown area. After a brief stop in town, we will drive to Maricopa to tour the California State Mineral and Mining Museum. We should arrive by noon for the tour and a lunch stop. Following the tour we will head north toward Columbia along the Mother Load gold belt. We will make a couple of stops along the way to observe some of the features associated with the Mother Load before arriving back at campus by 5 pm.  

What to Bring:

Note: r

-- clothing for both warm and cold/wet weather
-- food - three meals a day (click here for more detail)
-- cooking/eating utensils
-- a sleeping bag that will protect you to temperatures as low as 25-30 degrees
-- air mattress/pad
-- a tent that will shelter you from rain
-- sturdy hiking/walking shoes
-- sunscreen/chapstick
-- sunglasses
-- a hat
-- toiletries
-- money for miscellaneous items at the campground store
-- a learning log (to be turned in for credit)
-- a cameral (5 photos are required for your final report)
-- any medications you have to take

-- other

Also: Please let the instructor know if you have any medical or physical conditions that s/he should be aware of.

What to Expect:

Expect cool nights and potentially warm days. The weather is usually nice there this time of year, but with El Nino, who knows what will happen! The region has recently been hit hard by rain and flooding (we will see some amazing geology!) and it will be difficult to say what the weather will be like. Be prepared for some rain. Also be prepared for varmints - snakes, wild pigs (Pinnacles and Coast Range in general), scorpions, tarantulas, etc.

What to Turn in for Credit:

In order to assess your learning, I'll ask you to keep a field log for the trip. You will be expected to turn this in to me at the end of the trip. This log should document the things you would like to learn before the trip as well as why you are taking the class. You should also enter into your log the things you learned about: 1) the San Andreas and Calaveras faults; 2) plate tectonics processes observed; 3) mass wasting; and 4) the Pinnacles and volcanic processes. You will be asked to make an entry at each stop on the trip as well as add an additional entry at the end of each day, reflecting on what happened during the day. A final summary of what you learned on the trip (4-5 pages) will be required for full credit. All work will be due on Monday, April 4th, 2005 by 7:30 pm in my mailbox (Manzanita Bldg.) or office (Fir 2b). To summarize, the learning log should include:

    1. a description of your background with a PHOTOGRAPH of yourself

    2. a field log entry at each stop along the trip of observations and new material learned

    3. an entry in your field log at the end of each day reflecting on what your overall impressions of the day were

    4. a 4-5 page overall summary of the trip including what you learned about:
           1) the main tectonic processes observed on the trip;
           2) the different geologic hazards observed;
           3) an overview of geology of the whole trip that we observed;
           4) 8 photographs documenting important geologic phenomena;
           5) 3 hand-drawn diagrams (or computer generated by your own hand)
               depicting important geologic processes or phenomena observed
      .

      The summary will include a 4 page minimum, 5 page maximum, type-written report. The 8 photographs may not be included on the 4-5 type-written pages. They must be referred to in the text, but each must be placed on a separate page. Also include 3 separate diagrams in the report – these, too, must each be placed on separate pages.

Grading Scheme:

A = satisfactory completion of 1-4 above with strong demonstration of understanding of geological concepts encountered on the trip; appropriate use of photos and diagrams to support concepts in the paper; paper is well organized (i.e. includes an overview of what will be discussed, a main body explaining primary concepts, and a summary/conclusion). Also, appropriate conduct and behavior expected of a college-level geology student will be factored into your grade.  (Click here to read the Student Code of Conduct from the Columbia College Catalog)

B = completion of summary without all photos and/or diagrams; less than 4-5 pages; not type-written; field log incomplete; lack of comprehension of geological concepts observed; poorly organized paper. Also, appropriate conduct and behavior expected of a college-level geology student will be factored into your grade.

C = completion of field log; no summary turned in or summary, but no field log; poor comprehension of geological concepts observed; poorly organized paper. Also, appropriate conduct and behavior expected of a college-level geology student will be factored into your grade.

D = attendance on field trip only; no field log turned in; no summary turned in. Also, appropriate conduct and behavior expected of a college-level geology student will be factored into your grade.

F = no attendance or left trip early and did not turn any work in. Also, appropriate conduct and behavior expected of a college-level geology student will be factored into your grade.

Note: I have had to add these statements based on past student behaviors: 

1) All campgrounds we stay in ask for quiet after dark.  If you (individually or  in a group at the campground) have to be asked to be quiet after 9 pm your grade will be dropped.  If you have to be asked again your grade will turn to an "F" and you will fail the course;

2) NO SMOKING during field lectures and activities.  If you cannot adhere to this requirement you should not sign up for - or drop - the course.  I'm serious about this - you can't smoke in class, so don't smoke on my field trips.

That having been said, I hope we all have a good trip! Feel free to contact me at the phone number or email address above if you have any questions before or after we leave.

Expectations:

Each student must turn in: 1) a field notebook; and 2) a 4-5 page summary report with photos and diagrams and earn a passing grade in order to obtain credit for the course. Also, future field trips depend on us - our behavior and conduct should allow future geology students to enjoy what we get to. So please consider the rights of others, within our group as well as from other groups, on this trip (i.e. in terms of cleanliness, noise levels, seating, etc.). No alcohol or drugs are permitted on the trip. Please be ready to go each morning with a sack lunch in hand no later than 8:00 am. Our objective is to learn as much about Death Valley's geology as we can in the time permitted.

I hope we all have a good trip! Feel free to contact me at the number or email address above if you have any questions before or after we leave.

 

Sanandr2.jpg (19450 bytes)

1998 Columbia College San Andreas fault field trip at a sag pond along the fault.

 

 

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