Blog Profile / Geotripper

Filed Under:Academics / Geology
Posts on Regator:1237
Posts / Week:2.5
Archived Since:March 16, 2008

Blog Post Archive

How Foolish Can These People Be? The Treasure of our National Monuments

Let's make something very clear: these lands belong to the American people. They have always belonged to the American people, dating back to the time of statehood. There were attempts at times to give some of the lands away a century ago under the Homestead Act, but no one wanted them (not that anyone was asking Native Americans at the time). Show More Summary

Wild Horses at Home on the Range in Eastern California

I've been on the road again, this time for a short trip through Nevada, Utah and Arizona. Wi-Fi has been rare, so I'm only just beginning to catch up with things. Our route took us into the wildlands east of the Sierra Nevada, and before...Show More Summary

California's (not) Biggest, (not) Most Recently Active, and (not) Most Dangerous Volcano

Photo by Mrs. Geotripper Mt. Shasta is no doubt the most dominating volcano in all of California. It's huge, topping out at well above 14,000 feet, and is visible from over a hundred miles in a number of directions. It was the firstShow More Summary

Red Fox on the Tuolumne River

After traveling several thousand miles through half a dozen national parks, you'd think I would be tired of watching for wild animals, but no, that never happens. It was a nice surprise this morning to see this Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) on my more or less daily walk along the Tuolumne River. Show More Summary

Would You Go? The Pit Craters of Kilauea Volcano

Eddie Aikau is a Hawai'i legend. Born in 1946, he was an ancestor of Hawaiian kings, who in antiquity were the only ones allowed to surf. Eddie trained himself to become one of the great surfers of his day, but more importantly he was the first state paid lifeguard on the North Shore of Oahu. Show More Summary

Just How Big is Mt. Shasta in Northern California? Getting a sense of scale...

Mt. Shasta is a big mountain. It becomes visible from upwards of a hundred miles away. Topping out at 14,180 feet (4,322 m), it has the greatest volume of any Cascades stratovolcano at around a hundred cubic miles of lava flows and ash (the less visible shield volcanoes like Medicine Lake Highland are larger however). Show More Summary

Invaders on the Tuolumne River!

I know I seem easily distracted. I'm working on two blog series at the moment, my explorations in Hawai'i, and our recently completed journey through the Pacific Northwest. But that's the joy of blogging. I can write about anything I want, when I want! The thing is, adventures never end. Show More Summary

Chasing Volcanoes and Overthrusts: Exploring the Pacific Northwest and the Northern Rocky Mountains

Mt. Shasta from Interstate 5 in the vicinity of Red Bluff and Corning A few weeks ago I had the privilege of attending a field trip on Kilauea volcano on the Big Island with Don Swanson and Tina Neal of the Hawaii Volcano Observatory (and I'm probably not done with those blogs yet, by the way). Show More Summary

And...Geotripper is Back! What a Long Strange Journey it's Been...

I'm back from a journey to the Pacific Northwest and the Northern Rocky Mountains with 18 students and volunteers. We've been gone for two weeks, and Wi-Fi was practically nonexistent, and I was constantly on the run anyway, so total internet silence ensued. Show More Summary

Hitting the Road in the Best Way: Into the Pacific Northwest, and With My Students!

It's the time of year I love the most, our field season, when my students and I hit the road. We are making a grand loop, heading north along the spine of the Cascades, with stops at Mt. Shasta, Lava Beds, Crater Lake (above), St. Helens, and Mt. Show More Summary

Volcanoes in Hawai'i: Rock Finds a Way (to destroy life)

The summit of Mauna Kea in the distance, and the forested lower slopes of Mauna Loa in the foreground My last entry on the geological drama of Hawai'i concerned the stubbornness of life in a harsh volcanic environment, such as that which is found on the highest slopes of Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawai'i. Show More Summary

Liveblogging the Deluge: Before and Almost After

Tuolumne River on Feb. 21, 2017, discharge about 16,000 cubic feet per second There is no doubt that this has been a unique year for the rivers of California, one that could very well not be repeated in many of our lifetimes. A year ago we were in the grips of the worst drought ever recorded, five years running, and then the rains began. Show More Summary

Volcanic Flows in Hawai'i: Life Finds a Way (to destroy rocks)

Ohi'a Lehua (Metrosideros polymorpha) clinging to a crack in a 1974 lava flow on Kilauea I had kind of a schizophrenic (split-brain) response in regards to what I wanted to accomplish with this post. A couple of weeks ago while still...Show More Summary

The Airliner Chronicles: The San Francisco Peninsula and the San Andreas Fault

2 months agoAcademics / Geology : Geotripper

Crystal Springs Reservoir is on the upper left, while San Andreas Reservoir is on the lower right As has been no doubt obvious, I was in Hawai'i last week, and there have already been several posts about some of my adventures. I started...Show More Summary

Answer to a Hawaiian Mystery, and a Cautionary Tale

2 months agoAcademics / Geology : Geotripper

If you've had a geology or earth science course, do you remember what you learned about basalt? Basalt, the low-silica volcanic rock, the one that flows instead of exploding. The one that isn't all that dangerous. Even if you haven't had such a class, you've heard that visiting volcanoes on the Hawaiian Islands is one of the things tourists can do. Show More Summary

Here's a Hawaiian Mystery for You: Where Did These Circles Come From?

2 months agoAcademics / Geology : Geotripper

We were on a desolate plain on the south side of Kilauea Caldera on the Big Island exploring the ongoing volcanic activity. The smoking pit of Halemaumau Crater with her bubbling lake of molten lava was only a half mile or so north of us, so yes, we were in a closed area (but legally in this instance!). Show More Summary

A Flight Around the World's Highest Mountains: Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa

2 months agoAcademics / Geology : Geotripper

Mountains that make their own weather can be frustrating because...they make their own weather. High mountains in the path of consistent winds force air masses upwards, causing the water vapor within to condense, forming clouds and as often as not, rain. Show More Summary

The Most Desolate Place in the United States? The Mauna Loa Weather Observatory

2 months agoAcademics / Geology : Geotripper

If I seem to be missing in action, it would be because I've been stuck on planes and in airports on my way to the conference and field trips of the Cordilleran Section of the Geological Society of America. Just my luck that they happen to be meeting in Hawai'i this year. Show More Summary

The Unsung Waterfalls of Yosemite Valley

2 months agoAcademics / Geology : Geotripper

One takes their chance when deciding to visit Yosemite Valley in the springtime. The storms of winter are never quite done by then, and you may find yourself in a valley full of clouds. That's where I found myself a week back, touring the Yosemite region with my students. Show More Summary

Liveblogging the Deluge: The Other Shoe Drops!

3 months agoAcademics / Geology : Geotripper hasn't rained in weeks. Why am I still talking about "liveblogging the deluge"? This is the case of the other shoe dropping. For months we have had storm after storm, adding up to a record year of precipitation in Northern California, and nearly a record in the central state. Show More Summary

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