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Final Announcement

Cordilleran Section, GSA

103rd Annual Meeting • Theme: Northwest Convergence

4-6 May 2007 • Western Washington University • Bellingham, Washington

Section Officers
More Section Info


Technical Program Schedule

Technical Program Logistics / Events Student Programs
Technical Program Field Trips Registration Meetings / Events Travel Grants Mentors
Symposia Courses / Workshops Transportation / Parking Guest Activities Awards Job Fair
Theme Sessions Contact Info Accommodations Exhibits Field Trip Subsidies


The 2007 Annual Meeting of GSA's Cordilleran Section will be held at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington. The meeting theme is inspired by the geological setting of the Pacific Northwest: converging plates will inspire the convergence of a diverse group of geologists, producing a convergence of disciplines, ideas, and discoveries.


BellinghamBellingham is located in a geological paradise, with an array of outstanding examples of geological phenomena, ranging from active volcanoes, large glaciers, active and ancient fault zones, subduction complex rocks, ophiolites, terranes, exhumed mantle massifs, migmatites, and flood basalts, all close at hand. Traditionally the gateway to the San Juan Islands, Bellingham hosts an active population and an epic range of outdoor recreational pursuits. Temperatures are pleasant during early May, ranging from the low 50s to low 70s, with rain, wind, and bright sunny days typical.

Bellingham's regional airport is served by two airlines, or use the easy bus and train service from Seattle or Vancouver, BC. The meeting site is the Western Washington University (WWU) campus, one of the region's premier undergraduate institutions. The university is near many excellent lodging and dining establishments, which will be served by a shuttle bus during the meeting. Shops, museums, waterfront activities, and entertainment possibilities are located on campus or nearby.

We invite you partake in this excellent opportunity to meet with your fellow geologists and geoscience professionals in a truly beautiful and outstanding corner of our nation.


For your convenience, online registration is open throughout the meeting. Register online -- it's convenient and secure.

If you prefer, you may download the paper registration form (now for on-site processing only). Do not mail or fax the paper form to GSA, please bring it with you to the meeting. If you have any questions about your registration, please contact GSA Sales and Service, +1-888-443-4472 (toll-free), or +1-303-357-1000, option 3. On-site registration will be available at the WWU campus during the meeting.

Registration Fees Early Standard
Full 1-day Full 1-day
Professional Member $160 $100 $190 $120
Professional Nonmember $190 $130 $230 $160
Student Member $65 $50 $80 $60
Student Nonmember $90 $65 $110 $80
K-12 Teacher or student $30 $20 $33 $24
Guest $50 $60
Field Trip or Workshop only $45 $55
Early Registration Deadline: 2 April 2007
Cancellation Deadline: 9 April

New on your registration form

If you haven't already purchased Abstracts with Programs on your Membership Form, you can order a copy for on-site pickup on the meeting registration form.


GSA and WWU are committed to making this meeting accessible to all people interested in attending. Please indicate any special requirements on your registration form.


There are FREE charter busses running Friday through Sunday during the following times:

Campus Map
Parking on campus (printable PDF)

Parking is very limited on campus on weekdays so we encourage participants to take advantage of the shuttles we have provided (schedules noted below in accommodations section), public transit (WTA), and carpooling.

Field Trip participants must purchase permits at the registration desk for trips that occur during or after the conference. For trips that occur before the meeting, permits will be available for purchase from your trip leader. Parking permits are $10/day, $30 for three or more days.

Bellingham Transportation Phone Numbers:
  WTA (Whatcom Transit Authority): 360-647-7433
  City Cab: 360-733-8294 or 1-800-7CITYCAB (724-9222)

Lunchtime travel between campus, Fairhaven, and Downtown

Transportation between Fairhaven and downtown by bus between 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. (lunch off-campus):

Save $$
Carpool or find a roommate with the GSA Meetings Bulletin Board.


Blocks of rooms have been reserved at the following hotels. Reservations may be made directly by phone; you MUST identify yourself as attending the GSA Cordilleran Section Meeting when making reservations. Make your reservations by 4 April 2007, to get the GSA rate. Parking on campus is limited, especially on Fri., 4 May.


Technical Program Schedule

The abstracts deadline (6 Feb.) has now passed. Papers were invited for a variety of technical sessions: symposia, designated theme sessions, as well as sessions devoted to general topics in a range of areas. Sessions provide opportunities for either poster or oral presentations. Oral presentations are 15-20 minutes, including 3-5 minutes for questions and speaker exchanges. Oral presentations will utilize a single digital projector and standard presentation software. An overhead projector will be available in each room. Use of 35 mm slides is not encouraged and will only be permitted by special arrangement with the technical program committee, to be requested 30 days in advance of the meeting.

Posters will be presented on a 8' x 4' poster board, so the size of each poster should be no larger than 8' x 4'.

Only a single volunteered paper may be submitted for presentation by any one individual; but an individual may be a co-author on several submitted presentations. Those individuals who are invited to present a paper at a symposium may present an additional paper. If you have questions about your abstract, please contact Nancy Carlson, +1-303-357-1061, .


Several general sessions will spotlight a variety of topics in the geosciences, accompanied by a set of more focused symposia and theme sessions. Details are posted below and may also be obtained by contacting members of the technical program committee, Sue DeBari [ ]; Liz Schermer []; and Juliet Crider [], or the session conveners.

 top Symposia

Technical Program Schedule

Contributions to these sessions are by invitation only.

1. Quaternary and Tertiary Records of Past Environments, Pacific Northwest: In Honor of Calvin Heusser
Estella Leopold, University of Washington, []
Rolf Mathewes, Simon Fraser University
Cenozoic session to include papers on Quaternary and Tertiary pollen, macrofossil and related fossil records from the Pacific Northwest focusing on environmental reconstruction.
2. Paleogeographic Reconstructions of Cordilleran Terranes: In Honor of David L. Jones.
Clark Blake, []
Jim Monger, []
A critical review of Cordilleran tectonostratigraphic terranes from Mexico to Alaska.
3. Holocene Volcanic and Glacial Geology at Mount Baker, Washington: Reports from On-Going Field Studies
Dave Tucker, WWU, []
Kevin Scott, USGS, []
This session will present data collected at Mount Baker volcano, North Cascades. Increasing interest in this active volcano over the past few years has resulted in field studies in stratigraphy and Holocene eruptive and glacial history, geochemistry, gravimetry, geodesy, and gas emissions.
4. Quaternary Glaciation of Washington: In Honor of Dwight (Rocky) Crandell.
Don J. Easterbrook, WWU, []
The focus will be on new data and interpretations of Pleistocene and Holocene glaciation of the Puget Lowland, Columbia Plateau, Cascade Range, and Olympic Mountains. Authors of recent research in these areas will invited to present their latest findings, especially as it relates to the chronology of glacial events in response to global climate change. Glacial changes in historic time would also be included. The session would honor Dwight Crandell, pioneer glacial geologist who was responsible for establishment of much of the framework for Pleistocene glaciation of the southern Puget Lowland, Mount Rainier, and the Olympic Mountains.

 top Theme Sessions

Technical Program Schedule
1. Influence of Natural Hazard Assessments on Land-Use Policy-Is Anybody Listening?
John N. Thompson, Whatcom County Public Works Department [+1-360-715-7450, ]
International catastrophes have focused recent media attention on natural hazard prediction and warning systems. Yet the assessment of natural hazards, how human activity affects those hazards, and the attendant risks are fundamental tools that can be employed to influence land-use management to protect human life and safety, critical infrastructure, and public resources such as salmon habitat and water quality. This session would explore both successful examples of where natural hazard assessments have resulted in changes to land-use regulation (or attitudes toward land-use) and instances where the connection has not been successfully made, yet the need is great.
2. The Geology of Terroir, Techniques for the Evaluation of Viticultural Sites.
Kevin Pogue, Whitman College [+1-509-527-5955, ]
Terroir, the combination of environmental factors that make each vineyard site unique, is recognized as the dominant influence on the character and quality of wine grapes. Geological controls on terroir include the drainage characteristics and chemistry of rock and soil as well as geomorphic parameters such as slope and aspect. In recent years the wine industry has become increasingly aware of these geologic variables and their effects on viticulture. This session welcomes all papers devoted to geological aspects of vineyard site analysis.
3. Origin and Accretionary Processes of Cordilleran Terranes: New Methods, Models, and Challenges.
James E. Wright, University of Georgia [+1-706-542-4394, ]
Sandra J. Wyld, University of Georgia [+1-706-542-9908, ]
Bernie Housen, WWU [+1-360-650-6573, ]
We solicit papers on the origin, translation, and accretionary history of Paleozoic-Mesozoic terranes of the North American Cordillera, Central America, and Far-East Russia. Emphasis on new data, models, methods, or emerging challenges is encouraged.
4. The Little Ice Age in Western North America.
John J. Clague, Simon Fraser University [+1-604-291-4924, ]
Brian Menounos, University of Northern BC
Dan Smith, University of Victoria
In recent years, considerable progress has been made in reconstructing Little Ice Age climate at high temporal resolution. The impacts of climate change on physical and biological systems during the Little Ice Age are also better understood. This technical session will address the broad spectrum of past evidence for climate and other environmental conditions in western North America during the last millennium.
5. Pacific Northwest Paleoseismology and Neotectonics.
Brian Sherrod, USGS []
Thomas Pratt, USGS []
This session will focus on recent findings on the Quaternary and Holocene history and nature of faults in the Pacific Northwest, including the Cascadia subduction zone, intraplate faults, and upper plate (shallow) faults. Discussions of diverse topics, such as reflection seismology, geodesy, geomorphology, paleoseismology, and hazards analysis, are encouraged and expected.
6. Environmental Geology in the Pacific Northwest (Posters).
Sian Davies-Vollum, University of Washington Tacoma [+1-253-692-4624, ]
This session will explore connections between geology and environmental concerns in the Pacific Northwest. It will be an interdisciplinary session that bridges geology and environmental science. This session invites presentations on eclectic topics, such as (but not limited to) watershed studies, sediment pollution, and environmental health.
7. Hazards and Resources in the Portland, Tualatin, and Willamette Basins of Oregon and Washington (Posters).
Victoria E. Langenheim, USGS []
Ian Madin, DOGAMI
Russ Evarts, USGS
New detailed geologic mapping and paleomagnetic, geochemical, and geophysical data provide a foundation to quantify hazards and resources in the Portland, Tualatin, and Willamette Basins. These basins underlie the Vancouver-Portland-Salem urban corridor, an area with a burgeoning population. This area straddles the northern and eastern boundaries of the Oregon Coastal block. This block is characterized by large clockwise rotations, seismicity, and Quaternary volcanism (e.g. the Boring lava field, the youngest cinder cones within a metropolitan area in the lower 48 states). These new data sets help delineate the architecture and evolution of these basins, including seismically active basin-bounding and intra-basinal faults and folds. This area is also subject to landslides, depletion of groundwater and pressure on coastal resources and nearshore habitats. This session invites papers that document the structure and history of these fault zones and basins and the geology of the groundwater aquifers and surficial deposits, with the goal of assessing seismic shaking hazards, groundwater resources, and landslide potential in the urban corridor.
8. Active Volcano-Glacier Interactions: Process, Products, Hazards.
Tina Neal, USGS []
Rick Wessels, USGS []
Jackie Caplan-Auerbach, WWU []
This session will address the interaction between glacial ice and active volcanoes. Unrest at ice-clad volcanoes (including intrusion, increases in fumarolic output, and eruptions) can profoundly disturb glacial cover, resulting in distinctive seismicity, avalanche, debris flow, flood generation, and dramatic changes in glacier topography and motion. Recent activity in Alaska and the Cascades have highlighted these processes and products and provided new and sometimes surprising glimpses into the behavior of ice during eruptions. This session will present recent examples of volcano-ice interaction and what has been learned about physical process and resulting hazards.
9. Council on Undergraduate Research (Posters). Cosponsored by Council on Undergraduate Research.
Jeff Marshall, Cal Poly Pomona University []
This poster session is an opportunity to recognize outstanding research by undergraduate students, and to allow them an opportunity to present their work at a professional meeting. We encourage abstracts from any discipline in the earth and environmental sciences. The only requirement is that an undergraduate student be lead author on the abstract.
10. Neogene Orogenesis in the North American Cordillera.
Sara Gran Mitchell, College of the Holy Cross []
Owen A. Callahan, WWU []
The modern topography of the western United States has been profoundly influenced by relatively recent tectonic and climatic forces. However, the Neogene topographic evolution of the North American Cordillera is not well synthesized. Investigations from the fields of paleontology, isotopic geochemistry, thermochronology, geodesy, structural geology, and geomorphology have reached different conclusions about post-Eocene changes in surface elevation throughout the region. The goal of this session is to explore these and any other proxies in an effort to synthesize the broad-scale timing, magnitude, and cause of Neogene orogenesis and surface elevation change in the western Cordillera. It is our hope that this session will showcase new research and hypotheses regarding the connections between different surface elevation proxies in geographically diverse sections of the continent.
11. Volcanoes of the Pacific Basin and Rim: Geological and Geophysical Observations.
Michael Poland, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory-USGS []
Glyn Williams-Jones, Simon Fraser University []
Home to two-thirds of the world's active volcanoes and subject to ever increasing population pressure, the Pacific Basin and Rim volcanoes are in constant need of detailed geological and geophysical observations. This session aims to encompass the broad spectrum of often complimentary geological, geochemical and geophysical studies of these volcanic systems with an emphasis on understanding the processes responsible for past, present and future activity.
12. Crustal Differentiation Processes, Timescales, and Products in the North American Cordillera.
Paul Hoskin, University of Calgary []
Fundamental to crustal differentiation are the processes of magma generation, segregation, and emplacement. A rich record of these processes is preserved in exposed sections in the North American Cordillera. This session focuses on processes, and the rocks they produce, operable from the deep crust to shallow subvolcanic settings and their relation to deformation and tectonics. An aim of the session is to bring together those who investigate these processes using a variety of approaches including field studies, mineralogy/petrology, modeling, isotopes, and geochronology.
13. New Developments in Understanding Cretaceous Crustal Structure in the Southern Coast Mountains of British Columbia and North Cascades of Washington.
Harold Stowell, University of Alabama [+1-205-348-5095, ]
Robert Miller, San Josť State University []
Douglas Tinkham, Laurentian University []
The session is anticipated to include talks that address present and past crustal structure, and tectonic evolution of the southern Coast Mountains Orogen in northern Washington and British Columbia. Presentations are invited from researchers in a broad range of fields, including: geochronology, geophysics, igneous and metamorphic petrology, and structural geology.
14. New Constraints on Cascadia Slow Slip Events.
Timothy Melbourne, Central Washington University []
Wendy McCausland, University of Washington []
GPS and seismic measurements from the Cascadia subduction zone have shown that slow-slip events occur frequently along the deeper reaches of the plate contact. Also called Episodic Tremor and Slip (ETS), to date 34 events have been recognized with GPS since 1997, as well as many other tremor bursts unresolvable by geodetic means. The underlying cause of these newly recognized events remains an open question, as is their impact on general Cascadia seismicity, their distribution and periodicity along strike, and their impact on the depth extent of the eventual megathrust rupture. However, ongoing deployments of several hundred GPS stations, seismometers, borehole strainmeters, and other geophysical instrumentation, as well as petrologic analyses of exhumed Cascadia forearc sequences, bring the promise of new, previously unavailable, constraints on these events. This session solicits presentations that include critical observational or modeling constraints that bear on all aspects of aseismic slip events, both within and outside of the Cascadia subduction zone.
15. The Evolution of Transform Faulting and Propagation of Extension and Volcanism: The West-Northwest Margin of the Basin and Range Province, USA.
Kaleb C. Scarberry, Oregon State University [+1-541-908-5319, ]
James Faulds, University of Nevada-Reno [775-784-6691 ext. 159, ]
The boundaries between extended and nonextended crust record the development and growth of the Basin and Range Province in the wake of changing the western North American Plate boundary from convergent to transform. The northwestern margin of this vast extensional province, roughly from west-central Nevada to central Oregon and inland, is unique, because strain associated with plate motion is accommodated differently with increasing latitude: from transform, to extensional, to apparently magmatic within the High Lava Plains. Strain transfer mechanisms are poorly understood both in the south, where dextral shear may diffuse into Basin-Range extension, and in the north, where extension declines northward into a broad zone of Quaternary volcanism and NW-striking faults in the High Lava Plains. This session will examine the geologic and geophysical constraints of this complex, rapidly evolving region.
16. Landslide Hazards in the Forested Environment.
Laura M. Vaugeois, WA DNR-Forest Practices [+1-360-902-1405, ]
Landslides are a common, naturally occurring phenomenon in the Pacific Northwest. In nearly all forested watersheds of Washington where land management activities have occurred, landslides, as a result of that management have provided the dominant sediment input to the associated aquatic system, far outpacing the naturally occurring rates. The goal of landslide hazard mapping in the forested environment is to prevent landslides triggered by forest management or to mitigate their effects. To that end, we are soliciting papers (in either oral or poster format) that discuss case studies and issues related to landslide identification, landslide and hazard mapping, mitigation, and geotechnical reporting guidelines or standards.
17. Engineering Geologic Challenges in the Pacific Northwest and Cordillera. Cosponsored by Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists (AEG); GSA Engineering Division.
Mark Molinari, URS Consultants []
Bill Haneberg , Haneberg Geosciences []
The Pacific Northwest and Cordilleran regions present unique challenges to engineering geology because of active faulting, volcanic activity, dynamic coastlines, and glaciation. Projects in thick loose post-glacial deposits, through steeply dipping bedrock facades, and across mega landslides, or active floodplains require special engineering geologic solutions. Abstracts about engineering projects, successes or failures, in challenging geologic conditions are welcome. Companion to session 18: Challenges of Mapping Geologic Hazards in the Pacific Northwest and Cordillera.
18. Challenges of Mapping Geologic Hazards in the Pacific Northwest and Cordillera. Cosponsored by Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists (AEG); GSA Engineering Division; Pacific Northwest Center for Geologic Mapping Studies at the University of Washington; WDNR-DGER
Kathy Troost, University of Washington []
Tim Walsh, Washington State Dept. of Natural Resources []
The abundance of geologic hazards in the US Pacific Northwest and Cordilleran North America requires hazard mapping for a growing population increasingly educated about geology, geologic hazards, mitigation, and liability. Yet, such mapping is often faced with significant technical, social, and economical challenges. Abstracts about such efforts are welcome. Companion to session 17: Engineering Geologic Challenges in the Pacific Northwest and Cordillera.
19. Best Practices for Teaching Introductory Geology: Preparing Future Teachers and Informed Citizens.
Susan DeBari, WWU [360 650-3588, ]
Scott Linneman, WWU []
This session is designed to bring together presenters from universities and community colleges who have developed successful ways to teach earth science to non-science majors. Can we deal with the challenge of preparing future teachers and informed citizens in large lecture classes? What works in small classes? We also welcome presentations about how to best assess whether students are learning what we think we are teaching them.
20. Eocene Evolution of the NW Cordillera.
Robert B. Miller, San Josť State University []
Jeffrey H. Tepper, Univ. Puget Sound, []
Many recent advances have been made in our understanding of the Eocene tectonic evolution of the Northwest Cordillera from Oregon to Alaska. Submissions are requested from researchers on a range of topics involving Eocene rocks and tectonics, such as ridge subduction, regional transtension; magmatism; structural, thermobarometric and thermo-chronological evolution of metamorphic belts (e.g., Skagit Gneiss Complex), including core complexes; evolution of sedimentary basins; paleomagnetism; deep crustal structure; paleoclimate, paleoelevation, and other relevant themes.


A short description and itinerary for some of these trips are noted below, information can also be obtained by contacting the field trip leaders or a member of the field trip committee: Pete Stelling, ; Ned Brown, ; or Dave Tucker, .

Student Field Trip Subsidies

The Field Trip Subsidy application deadline (2 April) has now passed.
Due to conservative budgeting and good attendance at the last several meetings, the Section is able to offer limited field trip subsidies to students to facilitate first-hand experience in areas of interest to them. Students who register for field trips can also apply for a Field Trip Grant, which will reimburse a significant percentage of the field trip registration cost. Checks will be available at the meeting.


1. Selected Mount Baker Volcanic Deposits in the Baker River Valley: 19th Century Lahars, Tephras, and Debris Avalanches, and Early Holocene Subaqueous Lava.
Dave Tucker, WWU, []; Kevin Scott, USGS-CVO; Dave Lewis, Mount Baker High School.
Thurs., 3 May.
Cost: US$55 (includes a sack lunch, and transportation). Max. 30.
This is a one-day trip to the Baker River valley at the eastern foot of Mount Baker volcano. There will be five stops to observe early Holocene basalt lava (both subaerial and sublacustrine), and nineteenth century tephra, lahar, and debris avalanche deposits. Participants should see to their own breakfasts; a sack lunch is provided. The trip should return to Bellingham by dark. There is no cell phone contact during much of the trip. Driving time to the first stop is 1.5 hours.
2. Late Pleistocene and Holocene Glaciation and Volcanism in the Northern Puget Lowland and North Cascades.
Don Easterbrook, WWU, []; Dori Kovanen, UBC; Olav Slaymaker, UBC.
Thurs., 3 May.
Cost: US$45 (includes transportation and lunch for the one-day trip.). Max. 30.
Visit the type locality of the Everson glaciomarine drift (gmd) and examine meltwater channels deeply incised into the gmd related to the Sumas II advance (dated to be 11,100 14C years B.P.). We will also see evidence of the Sumas III and IV (Younger Dryas) moraines and outwash plains dated at 10,980 to 20,250 14C years B.P.
Our second stop will investigate evidence that the Nooksack Alpine Glacial System (NAGS) post-dated the Cordilleran Ice Sheet and was limited to Cascade alpine sources. The Kendell NAGS moraine and outwash terrace is composed of local lithologies with abundant, glacially faceted, striated boulders and cobbles derived from the upper North Fork of the Nooksack River. We'll see the 12,350 14C years B.P. Mosquito Lake moraines and kame-kettle complex, as well as Younger Dryas moraine up-valley with logs dated at 10,600 14C yrs B.P. We'll also have an opportunity to evaluate Mt. Baker lahar and tephra chronologies.
Later we'll see deposits of the Church Mountain landslide, a 9-km-long seismically induced mega-landslide. Afterward, we'll visit Heather meadows, with scenic views of Mount Shuksan and North Cascades. We'll examine Mount Baker tephra chronology, including the Mazama, Rocky Creek, and Cathedral Crag tephras. We'll also see topographically inverted lava flows at Table Mountain and deduce ice flow directions of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet using the Picture Lake moraine deposited by a cirque glacier from Table Mountain.
3. Lively Landscapes: Major Holocene Geomorphic Events in the Nooksack/Sumas Valley.
Scott Linneman, WWU, []; Paul Pittman, Whatcom County Pubic Works; Laura Vaugeois, WA-DNR.
Wed.-Thurs., 2-3 May.
Cost: US$150 (includes transportation, guidebook, meals, and one night lodging double-occupancy). Max.: 20.
The Pleistocene glaciations altered or created much of the geomorphic signature of the Nooksack and Sumas Valleys. However, the Holocene has had its own significant landscape altering processes, including mega-landslides and other large landslides, alluvial fan development, lahars, tectonic deformation, major channel avulsions, anthropomorphic alterations, sea level changes, and delta growth. These Holocene landform changes add to the mosaic of our geomorphic understanding and future planning. This field trip visits the sites of a dozen Holocene events along the North Fork Nooksack River upstream to Glacier (overnight at the Glacier Creek Lodge, +1-360-599-2991), then down to the confluence at Deming, down the Sumas and lower Nooksack valleys to the delta at Bellingham Bay. All meals included (Day 1: lunch at Carol's Girls Diner, then dinner at Milanos in Glacier, +1-360-599-2863; Day 2: Breakfast at Milanos; sack lunches from Milanos).

 During the Meeting

4. Murrelets and Molasse in the San Juan Islands.
Dave Engebretson, WWU, []; Clark Blake, WWU, [].
Sun., 6 May.
Cost: US$75 (includes transportation and lunch). Max. 25.
Join us for an all-day cruise to Sucia, the crown jewel of the San Juan Islands. On board the Snow Goose, we will see many species of sea and land birds plus possible marine mammals. In addition, the route will traverse many topographic and bathymetric features including faults, terrane boundaries, and glacial deposits as we tour through the San Juan Islands. On the island we will look at the highly-fossiliferous Nanaimo Fm. (Upper Cretaceous flysch), the Eocene Chuckanut Fm., a fluvial overlap assemblage (molasse) and the fault zone that separates them. Both formations are folded into a plunging syncline giving the island its unique horseshoe shape.


5. Structure and Evolution of the San Juan Islands, Northwest Cascades Thrust System.
Ned Brown, WWU, []; Liz Schermer, WWU, []; Bernie Housen, WWU, [].
Sun.-Wed., May 6-9.
Cost: US$430. Max.: 32.
The San Juan Islands provide an excellent opportunity to explore the complicated tectonic development of the Pacific Northwest. On our three day adventure, we'll take a private boat out to Spieden and Stuart islands to study the external units of the San Juan Islands thrust system, the Haro Formation and Spieden Group. Afterward, we'll examine outcrops of the Deadman Bay Volcanics, a nappe unit bearing Tethyan fusulinids at an intermediate level in the thrust system.
The second day will take us to South Beach and Cattle Point on southeastern San Juan Island to examine the rock units and structures of the Rosario and Lopez fault zones. We'll look at the Orcas Chert, Garrison Schist, Constitution Formation, deformed greywacke of the Lopez structural complex. In the afternoon we'll visit the Richardson locality on Lopez Island, where microfossils date the youngest rocks known to be involved in San Juan Islands terrane assembly, and Ar ages of phengite indicate age of blueschist. We'll also visit other Lopez sites to examine vein geometries and fabrics of the Lopez structural complex.
On the third and final day we will examine outcrops of the Fidalgo Ophiolite: ultramafic rock at Washington Park, layered gabbro at Alexander Beach, plagiogranite at Mount Erie, and marine sedimentary cover at Lakeside Industries quarry. We'll also look at semischist exposures of the Easton Suite at the mouth of Oyster Creek along Chuckanut Drive.
6. Early Fraser Glacial History of the Skagit Valley.
Mon.-Tues., 7-8 May.
7. Canadian Cascade Volcanism: Subglacial to Explosive Volcanism in the Sea to Sky Corridor, BC.
Sun.-Tues., 6-8 May.
8. Regional Tertiary Sequence Stratigraphy and Structure on the Eastern Flank of the Central Cascade Range, Washington.
Eric Cheney, University of Washington, [].
Sun.-Tues., 6-8 May.
Cost: US$210. Max. 21.
We will examine the formerly enigmatic stratigraphy of the few km-thick, nonmarine, arkosic Swauk Formation and representative outcrops of other Eocene, Miocene and Pliocene formations. These formations are parts of four interregional, unconformity-bounded sequences. The sequences reveal a northeasterly verging fold and thrust belt that extends from Yakima to Seattle, and they show that the Cascade Range is a late Neogene anticline.
9. Geology and Paleobotany of the Eocene Chuckanut Formation.
Rick Dillhoff, WWU, []; Tad Dilhoff, WWU; George Mustoe, WWU, [].
Mon., 7 May. This trip is full.
Cost: US$51. Max. 25.
One of the world's thickest sequence of non-marine sedimentary rock, the Chuckanut Formation is comprised of 6000 m of fluvial sediment deposited on the floodplain that covered much of northwest Washington prior to the mid-Cenozoic uplift of the North Cascade Range. The field trip will give participants the opportunity to explore the geology of the Chuckanut Formation, search for plant fossils, and enjoy the natural beauty of the Cascade foothills and Bellingham Bay.
Our first field trip stop will explore outcrops in the foothills near Mount Baker 35 miles east of Bellingham, where we will enjoy scenic views of the ice-covered volcano while searching for subtropical plant fossils along the rocky bed of Canyon Creek. Afterward, we will return to the coast for a picnic lunch at Larrabee State Park. The afternoon will be spent visiting geologic features at several sites along the Chuckanut Drive coastline, including an easy 1-mile forest hike to Clayton Beach, a locality with a rich natural history.
10. Flood Basalts and Ice Age Floods: Repeated Late Cenozoic Cataclysms of Eastern Washington.
Bruce Bjornstad, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, []; Scott Babcock, WWU; George Last, PNNL.
Mon.-Wed., 7-9 May.
Cost: US$255. Max. 25.
Hotel reservations are the responsibility of each trip participant. A block of rooms has been reserved at the Clarion Hotel and Conference Center located at 1515 George Washington Way, Richland, WA 99352. The hotel phone number is +1-509-946-4121. The cost for a double occupancy room is $34/person/night. Participants can pay extra for a single room ($60/night) if they so desire. The hotel reservation also includes a complimentary breakfast buffet on May 8 and May 9. Lunch for May 8 and May 9 will be prepared by the Clarion Hotel and the cost of the lunches is included in the trip registration fee.
Day 1. We'll observe CRB and Ice Age flood features near Vantage, Frenchman Coulee, and Sentinel Gap. Dinner is the responsibility of each participant.
Day 2. Activities include a 250-mile loop through the lower Channeled Scabland of southeastern Washington. Along the way we'll stop to look at CRB and flood features at Wallula Gap, Devils Canyon and Palouse Falls. Lunch will be provided. The trip will return to the Clarion Hotel at about 5 p.m. A catered dinner and wine tasting will be provided at the new palatial Terra Blanca Winery at 7 p.m.
Day 3. Activities include stops north of the Hanford Site to observe the Ringold Formation as well as more features from the Ice Age floods. Lunch will be provided.


Details of these workshops may be obtained by contacting the workshop leaders or the workshop chair, Jackie Caplan-Auerbach, .

  1. Exploring Earth through a Virtual Globe.
    3 May.
    John Bailey, Arctic Region Supercomputing Center,
    Cost: US$85. Max.: 20.
    The last decade has seen significant developments in the field of Virtual Globes; satellite images overlain on a digital elevation model of the Earth, through which a user can navigate. These 3D geobrowsers offer a new means to organize and display any forms of data with geographical components. They are quickly becoming the new paradigm for earth science education, logistics, and data access.
    In 2004, Google acquired a company called Keyhole Inc., which had developed a virtual globe program called “Earth Viewer.” Subsequently renamed and made available as a free download product, “Google Earth” (GE) was officially launched on 28 June 2005. With its established clientele base, world-wide name recognition and user-friendly interface, GE is currently the best known and most used Virtual Globe. It has introduced many to the concept of Virtual Globes for the first time.
    This short course will present the concept of Virtual Globes using Google Earth as an example of the possible capabilities. Other Virtual Globes will be briefly discussed but demonstrations will concentrate on the abilities of GE, using examples of current applications to research by the Earth Science community. Topics covered will include; basic components and navigation controls, functions integrated into the program interface, and the ability to develop user-defined functions using KML (Keyhole Markup Language), the functional language utilized by Google Earth.
    This short course is intended for those with little or no experience of Google Earth who are interested in using it as scientific or educational tool. No previous experience/knowledge of computer programming, satellite data or working with Virtual Globes is required.
  2. The Basics of Terrestrial LiDAR Scanning, from Acquisition to Processing.
    3 May. — Canceled.
  3. Airborne Remote Sensing: Recent Technological Advances and Relevant Applications to the Geology Field.
    Fri., 4 May, 8 a.m.-noon. — Canceled.
  4. Introduction to Ground Penetrating Radar for Near Surface Geophysical Investigations.
    3 May. — Canceled.
  5. Formal Regulations for Active Faults in Washington?
    Workshop Convened by AEG and WADNR
    Sunday, 6 May, 3:30-5:30 p.m., ES 100 — This event is full.
    Join us for a panel and open discussion session to identify the issues surrounding the formal regulation of active faults in Washington State. This workshop will focus on the technical issues facing consultants and scientists; a workshop later this year will focus on regulators and planners to identify their issues. We will hear from California geologists working with Alquist Priolo, from Washington geologists working within the confines of the Growth Management Act, from paleo-seismologists, and current efforts towards an active fault map/database for Washington. We need to discuss topics such as who identifies a fault as a hazard, do we have fault lines or zones, building in fault zones, set backs, when is a fault hazard study necessary, what constitutes a fault hazard study, what is the regulatory process needed, what constitutes best available science for active faults, what are our data gaps, are we ready for formal regulation, and much more.
    For more info: AEG: Kathy Troost, and WADNR: Tim Walsh,


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The travel grant application deadline (26 March) has now passed.
GSA's Cordilleran Section and the GSA Foundation have made travel grants available for GSA Student Members who are presenting oral or poster papers. Students must be currently enrolled and must be members of the relevant section to apply for support. All applications must be submitted online, and you must be registered for the meeting before you can apply. Click here for detailed eligibility guidelines. For more information, contact the Cordilleran Section secretary, Joan Fryxell, +1-909-537-5311.


Awards will be given for best student oral (undergraduate or graduate) and poster (undergraduate only) presentations. To be eligible, students must be lead authors and presenters, and they should clearly identify their abstracts as student work.

Roy J. Shlemon Mentor Program in Applied Geoscience. Sponsored by GSA Foundation.
Fri.-Sat., 4-5 May, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Jennifer Nocerino []. Lunch provided; location information will be available at the meeting registration desk.
This is a chance for students to discuss career opportunities and challenges with professional geoscientists from multiple disciplines. Plan to attend both free luncheons to hear different presenters. Students will receive free lunch tickets in their registration packet to attend the Shlemon Programs. However, space is limited: first come, first served.
The John Mann Mentors in Applied Hydrology Program. Sponsored by GSA Foundation.
Sat., 5 May, 5-6:30 p.m. Location available at the meeting registration desk. Jennifer Nocerino [].
This event starts right after the tech sessions end. It presents opportunities for students and recent graduates with interest in applied hydrogeology or hydrology as a career to chat over a meal with professionals practicing in these fields of interest. Students will receive a free pizza supper ticket in their registration packet to attend the Mann Program. However, space is limited: first come, first served.
Careers in Engineering and Environmental Geology. Cosponsored by Association of Engineering and Environmental Geologists (AEG); Association of Women Geologists (AWG).
6-8 p.m., Fri., 4 May.
Informal evening session to acquaint students and attendees with the field of engineering and environmental geology. Three AEG members will present case studies to give the attendees an idea of the type of work that engineering and environmental geologists do. This will be followed by an informal discussion while practicing geologists describe their jobs. Geologists with variable years of experience will be available for Q&A to give attendees a real picture of this discipline. Pizza and drinks provided by one of the regions top employers of engineering and environmental geologists. AEG member participants: Kathy Troost, Bill Haneberg, and Katie Lewis.


We are planning a job fair to bring in a large number of geoscience, geotechnical, and other professional firms interested in hiring outstanding students. We will also have space available for regional institutions to provide information about their graduate programs.


  • Icebreaker Reception
    Thurs., 3 May, 5-7 p.m., Wade King Center 127.
  • Association for Women Geoscientists and Association of Engineering and Environmental Geologists Reception
    This event is full.
    Fri., 4 May, 6-8 p.m., Environmental Studies 213.
  • Book Signing
    Sun., 6 May, noon-4 p.m., Exhibits area.
    Geologist and author David Montgomery will autograph copies of his newest book Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations, an engaging natural and cultural history of soil that sweeps from ancient civilizations to modern environmental calamites.
  • Annual Business Meeting: GSA Cordilleran Section
    Sat., 5 May, 5-7 p.m.


The city of Bellingham is one of the northernmost cities in the continental United States and is located in a wonderful coastal setting. The major metropolitan areas of Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia, are also an easy drive from Bellingham. A variety of activities are available on the Western Washington University campus and in the city of Bellingham. Farther afield, hiking, climbing, boating, biking, and running activities are abundant, recently making Bellingham one of Outdoor Magazine's top 10 best places to live. For more information about the many activities and amenities that Bellingham has to offer, please visit the Bellingham Visitor's Bureau Web site,


Exhibit booths will be available for commercial and nonprofit organizations. For more information or to reserve a booth, contact Bernie Housen, [].


If you have questions or need further clarification, please contact the convention chair, Bernie Housen.

Local Committee Chair
Bernie Housen
Western Washington University
Technical Program Co-Chairs
Liz Schermer
Sue DeBari
Juliet Crider
All from Western Washington University