Field Trips

All trips run on Saturday, 4 April. Fees are US$60 per person per trip and include transportation, box lunch, and a guidebook of all the meeting field trips. Max.: 50; min.: 20 per trip.

  1. Chicago's Landscape — A Product of Glacial and Coastal Processes.
    4 Apr., 7:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
    Michael J. Chrzastowski, Illinois State Geological Survey,      Despite the urbanization of Chicago's landscape, notable preservation of prominent geomorphic features records the glacial and coastal processes that shaped this setting and formed the physical reason behind this city. This field trip will examine the paleogeographic changes in Chicago over the past 14,000 years — as glacial ice receded from the area, as wide fluctuations in lake level created a series of ancient shorelines, and the how and why of the Chicago River's configuration. This field trip will also examine how the landscape provided both opportunities and challenges for the geo-engineering involved in building Chicago. Stops will include the outlet of Glacial Lake Chicago, the Chicago Portage National Historic Site, the historical and present-day mouth of the Chicago River, sites over buried paleochannels, and sites along relict shorelines of ancestral Lake Michigan.
  2. The Upper Mississippi Valley Pb-Zn District Revisited: Geology, Mining, and Cultural History, and a Look at Reclamation and Environmental Issues 30 Years after the Last Mine Closed.
    4 Apr., 7 a.m.–5:30 p.m.
    Bruce A. Brown, Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey; Thomas C. Hunt, University of Wisconsin-Platteville; Dave M. Johnson, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Daniel D. Reid, Wisconsin Department of Transportation.      This trip will travel through the unglaciated landscape of southwest Wisconsin to Shullsburg, site of the last major mine, which closed in 1978. We will look at successful reclamation of the site and discuss groundwater issues related to mine closing. In Shullsburg, we will take an underground tour of a mid-nineteenth century crevice lead mine. We will then travel west to Hazel Green and through the heart of the historic mining district, with stops at several sites to discuss environmental and reclamation issues. At Platteville, we will visit the Mining Museum, which includes underground displays of lead and zinc mining. Returning east, we will head to the historic mining town of Mineral Point, stopping on the way to observe examples of the impact of mineralization on highway construction. In Mineral Point, we will have the opportunity to see many historic buildings that are good examples of the architecture used by mid-nineteenth century Cornish settlers. Our final stop will be at the reclaimed site of a former zinc roasting plant.
  3. Dunefields and Deglacial Environments of Northern Illinois.
    Sorry, this trip has been canceled.
  4. The Possible Impact of Oceanic and Climatic Events on the Depositional Patterns of Silurian Rocks in Northeastern Illinois.
    4 Apr., 7 a.m.–6 p.m.
    Don Mikulic, Illinois State Geological Survey; Joanne Kluessendorf, Weis Earth Science Museum.
         This trip will examine possible relationships between the depositional history of Silurian rocks in northeastern Illinois and climatic/oceanic events along with associated biotic changes. We will visit Silurian and Late Ordovician exposures in several quarries of the region, including the famous Thornton Quarry, which contains one of the best-exposed Silurian reefs in the world. Participants should bring hardhats and safety glasses.


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