Last Minute Packing

Only four hours left to departure.  Have you finished packing?

Be at the CCL loading dock no later than 3pm! The buses leave for the airport at 3:15pm, and, as Adam said, “You will be very, very sad if you miss the trip.”

We’re aiming for no checked baggage, given our tight and complicated connections.  So remember to leave your rock hammers, pocket knives, tandem quadrupole mass spectrometers, and other prohibited items at home.

Do you have your passport? Did you remember your sunscreen and lip balm? The weather is a bit warmer at our destination — we’ll be spending tomorrow night in San Pedro de Atacama — than it is in Ann Arbor right now, though it may be a tad warmer here when we return…

Ann Arbor 10-day Weather Forecast
Ann Arbor 10-day Weather Forecast (from Wunderground)
San Pedro de Atacama 10-day Weather Forecast
San Pedro de Atacama 10-day Weather Forecast (from Wunderground)



It’s time for another University of Michigan, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, geology field trip, and this time we are headed south… far south… to Chile!

Chile Overview Map
We are using ArcGIS Online to organize our data and itinerary for the trip. In the field we will be using Collector for ArcGIS for offline access. (View Field Trip Map)

The geology of Chile covers a broad swath of Earth history and exhibits a wide range of interesting features.  During our trip — 26 February to 8 March 2015 — we will only be able to cover a small subset of what Chile has to offer. Our planned itinerary concentrates on geology and mining in four areas: San Pedro de Atacama, Calama, Cajón del Maipo, and Santiago.

Class photo from last Chile seminar meeting.
The enthusiasm and excitement shows at the final meeting of EARTH 435 before the field trip!

In preparation for the trip, students have been participating since the beginning of the year in a weekly two-hour seminar (1-credit of EARTH 435).  Students teamed up for presentations on a variety of topics, such as:

  • Geology and Geography of Chile
  • Tectonics of Chile
  • Geysers and Hot Springs
  • Porphyry and Epithermal Ore Deposits
  • and presentations on the four areas we will be visiting

In addition to geologic topics, many presentations also touched briefly on archaeology, anthropology, economics, history, etc., in order to provide additional context for the places and people we will be visiting.

Thanks to funding from a generous anonymous donor, Shell, Chevron, and various individual contributors to the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences Field Excursion Endowment Fund, the out-of-pocket cost to students for this trip has been greatly reduced, ensuring an important educational experience is available to all.