Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Mid week Update
It’s Tuesday. Starting yesterday we are using toughbook laptops that we are able to take into the field and have them survive. They can fall down mountains, be rained on, you name it and still function. We are now mapping with these mini laptops on ArcGIS. It’s a whole new monster but it will be cool to learn the program better. We know how to look at contacts, outcrops and structure in the field now, it’s just a new manner in recording it. It takes getting used to because you have things that you know are there, and ideas about what is there. By hand it’s much easier to play around with your ideas on paper, look at it, erase. On the computer it’s more of a pain.
So Doug (new professor) let us know what the next weeks will look like. Basically, the camp is split into two courses. The first one ends with this week and is 3 weeks long. We learned to map based out of Cañon City, CO. On Sunday we will begin the next 3 week long course. That one will take us through Utah for a week with day trips and day projects, camping out at night. The last two weeks we will be in Dyer, NV camping and mapping around there with the computers. Then we will drive back across NV and UT to CO and pick up our stuff and disperse. That’s when I will be catching a flight up to Montana to begin my REU in Yellowstone. So I’m not sure how much internet I’ll be getting after this week since Utah and Nevada are much less stable conditions.
It’s gotten really hot and still is super dry here. Today my partner and I ran out of water towards the end of the day and had to be thirsty as we walked back to the vans. The views have been spectacular though. I keep forgetting to bring my camera to the field. I’m usually forcing my partner to hike to the top of the mountains to look at the views. They usually don’t mind. There are a lot of cacti and everyone gets pricked, stuck and poked. I’ve done pretty well. I like to think it’s because I had so much experience in NV avoiding them. Also we have had a lot of snake sightings. Some rattlers and some non-venomous.
The stars at night are finally beautiful because the full moon doesn’t show up early. I’ve definitely been an early to bed type because I hate getting up in the morning. Luckily my cabin-mates are the same.
I bought Basin and Range by John McPhee and am getting through it pretty quickly. I also bought a practice GRE book that I opened last night only to close very quickly because everyone around me was telling me the answers and not letting me think. I’d say that I’m looking forward to having more alone time, but I don’t mind being with people a lot. There is a lot of space out here at least to kind of get alone time. But even then, it’s really obvious when someone goes off on their own so I feel like it’s not as anonymous and personal as I’d like.
That being said, the only reason I really want to get off sometimes is because everyone is in complaining or gossip mode at this point. Both of those suck and aren’t my bag. I don’t think I do much complaining other than at the fact that others complain too much. I don’t gossip as much either because I don’t really know people as well.
That’s it for now. Overall I am very tan on my arms/shoulders/face/neck. I am hiking pretty well and am still in relatively good spirits. I can’t believe how much I lined up for myself this summer but I’m almost done with the first section. I’m glad to have the service to keep in touch with everyone.