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1/9/09 100 Things for Geologists to Do

As many of you know, I was a geologist in my past life, which is to say up until a few years ago. Now I'm just another amateur geonerd. :) This evening, I stumbled across the world of "geoblogs", and found this at

100 Things You've Done Meme: A Geologist's Version

MJC Rocks over at Geotripper has created a wonderful new meme based on the 100 Things You've Done meme that has been going around. Read about how he came up with/adapted this list here.

Bold the ones you have done and tell us some great stories!

1. See an erupting volcano (in Hawai'i National Park)
2. See a glacier (in Alaska, in Glacier Bay and other places)
3. See an active geyser such as those in Yellowstone, New Zealand or the type locality of Iceland
4. Visit the Cretaceous/Tertiary (KT) Boundary. Possible locations include Gubbio, Italy, Stevns Klint, Denmark, the Red Deer River Valley near Drumheller, Alberta.
5. Observe (from a safe distance) a river whose discharge is above bankful stage (I lived on the Mississippi during the Flood of '93 and the Flood of '95. Plus, this fall had massive flooding on every creek and rivulet in the northern half of Morocco.)
6. Explore a limestone cave. Try Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico, Lehman Caves in Great Basin National Park, or the caves of Kentucky or TAG (Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia)
7. Tour an open pit mine, such as those in Butte, Montana, Bingham Canyon, Utah, Summitville, Colorado, Globe or Morenci, Arizona, or Chuquicamata, Chile.
8. Explore a subsurface mine.
9. See an ophiolite, such as the ophiolite complex in Oman or the Troodos complex on the Island Cyprus (if on a budget, try the Coast Ranges or Klamath Mountains of California).
10. An anorthosite complex, such as those in Labrador, the Adirondacks, and Niger (there's some anorthosite in southern California too).
11. A slot canyon. Many of these amazing canyons are less than 3 feet wide and over 100 feet deep. They reside on the Colorado Plateau. Among the best are Antelope Canyon, Brimstone Canyon, Spooky Gulch and the Round Valley Draw. (The Siq in Petra, Jordan. Remember the final scene in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, when they're approaching the temple with the Holy Grail? Yeah, that slot canyon.)
12. Varves, whether you see the type section in Sweden or examples elsewhere.
13. An exfoliation dome, such as those in the Sierra Nevada.
14. A layered igneous intrusion, such as the Stillwater complex in Montana or the Skaergaard Complex in Eastern Greenland. (Yup, Stillwater. Where I nearly started an avalanche.)
15. Coastlines along the leading and trailing edge of a tectonic plate
16. A ginkgo tree, which is the lone survivor of an ancient group of softwoods that covered much of the Northern Hemisphere in the Mesozoic.
17. Living and fossilized stromatolites (Glacier National Park is a great place to see fossil stromatolites, while Shark Bay in Australia is the place to see living ones)
18. A field of glacial erratics (in Wyoming and Massachusetts)
19. A caldera (in Hawai'i as well as the Yellowstone Caldera, plus I mapped part of the Olympus Mons caldera on Mars - not in person, though!)
20. A sand dune more than 200 feet high (Does mapping them on Mars count?)
21. A fjord (in Alaska)
22. A recently formed fault scarp (In Washington State)
23. A megabreccia
24. An actively accreting river delta
25. A natural bridge (Zion National Park)
26. A large sinkhole
27. A glacial outwash plain
28. A sea stack
29. A house-sized glacial erratic
30. An underground lake or river
31. The continental divide
32. Fluorescent and phosphorescent minerals
33. Petrified trees
34. Lava tubes (Walked a few miles through one in Hawai'i. Amazing features inside.)
35. The Grand Canyon. All the way down. And back. (I've only done the rim, sorry!)
36. Meteor Crater, Arizona, also known as the Barringer Crater, to see an impact crater on a scale that is comprehensible (Walked all the way around it with my Impact Physics class. Collected samples, too. Yay for profs who pull strings!)
37. The Great Barrier Reef, northeastern Australia, to see the largest coral reef in the world.
38. The Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, Canada, to see the highest tides in the world (up to 16m)
39. The Waterpocket Fold, Utah, to see well exposed folds on a massive scale.
40. The Banded Iron Formation, Michigan, to better appreciate the air you breathe.
41. The Snows of Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
42. Lake Baikal, Siberia, to see the deepest lake in the world (1,620 m) with 20 percent of the Earth's fresh water.
43. Ayers Rock (known now by the Aboriginal name of Uluru), Australia. This inselberg of nearly vertical Precambrian strata is about 2.5 kilometers long and more than 350 meters high
44. Devil's Tower, northeastern Wyoming, to see a classic example of columnar jointing (Isn't Devil's Tower in South Dakota? Anyway, I've seen it twice and hiked through the boulder-y base once.)
45. The Alps.
46. Telescope Peak, in Death Valley National Park. From this spectacular summit you can look down onto the floor of Death Valley - 11,330 feet below.
47. The Li River, China, to see the fantastic tower karst that appears in much Chinese art
48. The Dalmation Coast of Croatia, to see the original Karst.
49. The Gorge of Bhagirathi, one of the sacred headwaters of the Ganges, in the Indian Himalayas, where the river flows from an ice tunnel beneath the Gangatori Glacier into a deep gorge.
50. The Goosenecks of the San Juan River, Utah, an impressive series of entrenched meanders.
51. Shiprock, New Mexico, to see a large volcanic neck
52. Land's End, Cornwall, Great Britain, for fractured granites that have feldspar crystals bigger than your fist.
53. Tierra del Fuego, Chile and Argentina, to see the Straights of Magellan and the southernmost tip of South America.
54. Mount St. Helens, Washington, to see the results of recent explosive volcanism.
55. The Giant's Causeway and the Antrim Plateau, Northern Ireland, to see polygonally fractured basaltic flows.
56. The Great Rift Valley in Africa.
57. The Matterhorn, along the Swiss/Italian border, to see the classic "horn".
58. The Carolina Bays, along the Carolinian and Georgian coastal plain
59. The Mima Mounds near Olympia, Washington
60. Siccar Point, Berwickshire, Scotland, where James Hutton (the "father" of modern geology) observed the classic unconformity
61. The moving rocks of Racetrack Playa in Death Valley
62. Yosemite Valley
63. Landscape Arch (or Delicate Arch) in Utah
64. The Burgess Shale in British Columbia
65. The Channeled Scablands of central Washington
66. Bryce Canyon
67. Grand Prismatic Spring at Yellowstone
68. Monument Valley
69. The San Andreas fault (Half my extended family lives on it)
70. The dinosaur footprints in La Rioja, Spain
71. The volcanic landscapes of the Canary Islands
72. The Pyrennees Mountains
73. The Lime Caves at Karamea on the West Coast of New Zealand
74. Denali (an orogeny in progress)
75. A catastrophic mass wasting event
76. The giant crossbeds visible at Zion National Park
77. The black sand beaches in Hawaii (or the green sand-olivine beaches) (both!)
78. Barton Springs in Texas
79. Hells Canyon in Idaho
80. The Black Canyon of the Gunnison in Colorado
81. The Tunguska Impact site in Siberia
82. Feel an earthquake with a magnitude greater than 5.0.
83. Find dinosaur footprints in situ
84. Find a trilobite (or a dinosaur bone or any other fossil)
85. Find gold, however small the flake
86. Find a meteorite fragment
87. Experience a volcanic ashfall
88. Experience a sandstorm (This summer - I think I wrote a blog entry about it!)
89. See a tsunami
90. Witness a total solar eclipse
91. Witness a tornado firsthand. (Important rules of this game). (The sky turns *green*!)
92. Witness a meteor storm, a term used to describe a particularly intense (1000+ per minute) meteor shower
93. View Saturn and its moons through a respectable telescope.
94. See the Aurora borealis, otherwise known as the northern lights. (Just weakly, from my parents' front yard in Illinois)
95. View a great naked-eye comet, an opportunity which occurs only a few times per century (Hale-Bopp and Hyukatake)
96. See a lunar eclipse
97. View a distant galaxy through a large telescope
98. Experience a hurricane (only the outer edges, lhumdullah, in Houston)
99. See noctilucent clouds
100. See the green flash (Was in position and watching for it, but didn't see it.)

Looks like I've done 46 out of 100. Clearly, I need to do more traveling. :D

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for jumping into the meme! You have an interesting blog.


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