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Final Announcement

Rocky Mountain Section, GSA

58th Annual Meeting

17-19 May 2006 • Western State College • Gunnison, Colorado

Section Officers
More Section Info

Technical Program Schedule

Technical Program Events & Logistics
Technical Program Field Trips Environment Special Events
Theme Sessions Short Courses Registration Exhibits
  Student Programs Accommodations Contact Info

The 58th Annual Meeting of the Rocky Mountain Section will be hosted by the Geology Program of the Department of Natural and Environmental Sciences, Western State College of Colorado. The meeting will take place on the Western State College campus in Gunnison.


Western State College of Colorado is a small liberal arts college located in Gunnison, Colorado (population 6,000), on the west side of the divide in southwest Colorado. Gunnison lies in a pristine Rocky Mountain valley 200 miles southwest of Denver, and at an elevation of 7700 feet, it offers significant year-round outdoor recreational opportunities. Although surrounded by high mountains, up to 14,000 feet in elevation, the town is located in a semiarid basin and is typically cool but sunny in May. The resort town of Crested Butte is 30 miles to the north. Gunnison lies on the eastern margin of the Paleozoic Ancestral Uncompahgre highland and the western tectonic margin of the Laramide Rocky Mountains. Local features of geological interest include the Slumgullion earthflow, the San Juan volcanic field, and the Powderhorn carbonatite complex to the south, West Elk volcano and Black Canyon of the Gunnison to the west, and the Laramide Elk Mountain thrust zone to the northeast. Less than one mile south of town is an extensive Folsom archaeological site. Within a two-hour drive are the northern reaches of the Rio Grande rift and Great Sand Dunes National Park.


The Rocky Mountain Section has arranged special rates at the following hotels. These hotels are within easy walking distance of the Western State campus. Please contact the hotels directly for reservations, and be sure to mention that you need the GSA Rocky Mountain Meeting rate. Because Gunnison is a popular tourist destination, it is recommended that you make your reservation early.

Quality Inn 400 E. Tomichi Ave. +1-970-641-1237 Single/double: US$55.
Super 8 411 E. Tomichi Ave. +1-970-641-3068 Single/double: US$50.
Gunnison Inn 412 E. Tomichi Ave. +1-970-641-0700 Single: US$45; double: US$65.

A complete list of Gunnison hotels can be found at
For students or those on a budget, a limited number of on-campus apartments may be available.

Save $$ on Travel and Housing — Use the GSA Meetings Bulletin Board to arrange carpools and/or roomates.


Early Registration Deadline: 17 April 2006
Cancellation Deadline: 24 April 2006


Online registration is now closed but will re-open on site in Gunnison (click here for on-site hours). For your convenience, you may download a paper On-Site Registration Form (PDF format), but bring it with you to the meeting, do not send it to GSA.

Registration Fees Early Standard
Full meeting One day Full meeting One day
Professional Member $125 $85 $135 $95
Professional Member (70 and older) $95 $55 $105 $65
Professional Nonmember $135 $95 $145 $105
Student or Associate Member $75 $65 $80 $70
Student Nonmember $85 $75 $90 $80
K-12 Professional $40 $30 $45 $35
Guest or Spouse $25 $15 $30 $20
Field trip or workshop only $25 $25 $25 $25

On-site registration will be available in the Student Union at Western State College:

On-Site Registration Hours
Tues., 16 May3-8 p.m.
Wed., 17 May7:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Thurs., 18 May7:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Fri., 19 May7:30 a.m.-10 a.m.


GSA is committed to making its meetings accessible to all people interested in attending. Indicate special requirements (wheelchair accessibility, etc.) on the registration form. Western State College of Colorado is ADA compliant.


Papers are invited for theme and general sessions. Technical session presentations will generally be 12 min in length with 3 min for questions. Some sessions may use a longer format. Only digital media presentations will be allowed (sorry, no slides). Since a centralized computer system will be used, speakers will not be allowed to use their own laptops.

Poster space will be 4' 8'. A limited number of tables will also be available upon request. Poster authors are required to be present for at least one hour at the end of the day.


The abstracts deadline has now passed (21 Feb). If you have questions about your abstract, contact Nancy Carlson, +1-303-357-1061, .


Technical Program Schedule1. Structural, Stratigraphic, and Igneous Evolution of the Rio Grande Rift System.
Scott Baldridge, Los Alamos National Laboratory, +1-505-667-4338,; John Fletcher, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-2367,
2. Tertiary Laramide Evolution of the Rocky Mountains.
Jim Coogan, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-3425,; Dave Lageson, Montana State University, +1-406-994-6913,
3. Evolution of Pennsylvanian-Permian Ancestral Rocky Mountains-Structure, Stratigraphy, and Tectonics.
Chuck Kluth, Colorado School of Mines, +1-303-904-2939,; Ron Blakey, Northern Arizona University, +1-928-523-2740,
4. Council on Undergraduate Research (Posters).
Bill Dinklage, Utah Valley State College, +1-801-863-7607,
5. Geoarchaeology of the Southern Rocky Mountain Region.
Mark Stiger, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-2073,; Casey Dukeman, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-2180,
6. Volcanism of the Southern Rocky Mountain Region.
Allen Stork, Western State College, +1-970-943-3044,
7. Geoscience Lecture and Lab-What Works for You? Tried and True or Innovative and Different!
C. Frederick Lohrengel II, Southern Utah University, +1-435-865-8051,; Robert L. Eves, +1-435-586-1934,; Mark R. Colberg, +1-435-865-8331,
8. Collaborative Efforts to Link Science to Natural Resource Management in the West.
Christine Turner, U.S. Geological Survey,
9. Unraveling Ancient Continental Ecosystems.
Fred (Pete) Peterson, U.S. Geological Survey, +1-303-236-1546,; Ron Blakey, Northern Arizona University, +1-928-523-2740,
10. Advances in Petroleum Geology in the Rocky Mountain Region.
Rex Cole, Mesa State College, +1-970-248-1599,; Jim Coogan, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-3425,
11. Springs of the Intermountain West.
Laura Crossey, University of New Mexico, +1-505-277-5349,; Abe Springer, Northern Arizona University; Dennis Newell, University of New Mexico.
12. Cenozoic Paleoclimate of the Southern Rocky Mountains.
Emmett Evanoff, University of Northern Colorado,


Unless otherwise stated, all field trips will depart from and return to the north entrance of the Student Union at Western State College. The field trip coordinator is Jim Coogan, Western State College,, but for detailed information on individual field trips, please contact the field trip leaders.

1. Black Canyon of the Gunnison: From Proterozoic Assembly to Quaternary Canyon Incision. (2 days)
Mon.-Tues., 15-16 May. Karl Karlstrom, University of New Mexico, +1-505-277-4346,
This field trip offers an overview of the geology of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, with emphasis on new work on Proterozoic tectonics (Micah Jessup and Karl Karlstrom) plus early stages of work on Quaternary canyon incision (Karl Karlstrom and Eric Kirby). Max.: 30. Cost: US$90, includes lunches, transportation, and guidebook. Trip will start from and return to Western State College Student Union each day.
2. Eruptive and Non-Eruptive Calderas, Northeastern San Juan Mountains (Where did the ignimbrites come from?). (2 days)
Mon.-Tues., 15-16 May. Peter Lipman, U.S. Geological Survey, +1-650-329-5295,; William McIntosh, New Mexico Bureau of Geology & Mineral Resources,
The northeastern San Juan Mountains, the least studied portion of this well-known volcanic region, are the site of several newly identified and/or reinterpreted ignimbrite caldera systems. On Day 1, we will traverse the previously unrecognized North Pass caldera, source of the 32 Ma Saguache Creek Tuff, a regionally distinctive crystal-poor alkalic rhyolite that bridges an apparent gap in the southwestward migration from older explosive volcanism in central Colorado to the culminating locus of Tertiary volcanism in the central San Juan region. Day 2 will focus on features of the Cochetopa Park caldera, presenting evidence that no large explosive eruptions vented from this morphologically beautifully preserved caldera; rather, Cochetopa Park subsided passively as the >500 km3 Nelson Mountain Tuff vented at 26.8 Ma from an "underfit" caldera 30 km to the SW. New Ar-Ar single-crystal age determinations are critical to these reinterpretations. Leave Comfort Inn of Alamosa, Colorado, 8 a.m., 15 May; overnight in Gunnison; return to Gunnison ~6 p.m., 16 May. Max.: 20. Cost: US$105 for 1 night lodging (double occupancy in Gunnison 15 May), or US$135 for 2 nights lodging (double occupancy in Alamosa 14 May and Gunnison 15 May). Cost includes lunches, transportation, and guidebook.
3. Depositional Environments of the Cretaceous Dakota Sandstone, Gunnison Basin. (1 day)
Tues., 16 May. Bruce Bartleson, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-2138,
Trip participants will examine the stratigraphy and depositional systems of the Dakota Sandstone in the Gunnison area. These rocks have previously received little attention; the area has become of interest to petroleum geologists because the Dakota and other sedimentary units here afford a last look at their characteristics before they are buried in the San Juan Sag to the south, a potential petroleum province. Locally, the Dakota Sandstone consists of a lower, low-sinuosity, coarse-grained fluvial system, overlain abruptly by a nearshore fine-grained marine sequence that then grades transitionally upward into the offshore marine shales of the lower Mancos Formation. The nearshore marine sequence shows great variability in detail in depositional systems over the areal extent of the region. The trip will focus on these different depositional systems. Leave Western State College Union at 8:30 a.m., May 16; return at 5 p.m. Max.: 22. Cost: professionals, US$40; students, US$30; includes lunch and transportation.
4. Multiple Folsom Sites in an Intermontane Setting, Tenderfoot Mountain, Gunnison, Colorado. (Half-day, afternoon)
Thurs., 18 May. Mark Stiger, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-2073,; Erik Bjornstad, +1-970-943-2543,
Western State College archaeologists will guide van tours to the Folsom-age Mountaineer site and the Early Archaic Tenderfoot site two miles from town. The Mountaineer site, on top of 900-ft-high W Mountain, has yielded evidence of multiple Folsom occupations, including a Folsom structure. Leaves Western State College Union at 1 p.m. and returns by 5:30 p.m. Cost: US$15.
5. Pleistocene Glacial History of the Taylor River Basin, Gunnison County, Colorado. (1 day)
Sat., 20 May. Keith Brugger, University of Minnesota-Morris, +1-320-589-6310,; Barry S. Goldstein, University of Puget Sound, +1-253-879-3822,
The drainage basin of the Taylor River was extensively glaciated during the Pleistocene. Glacial systems existed as individual cirque and valley glaciers and larger glacier complexes consisting of large valley glaciers whose accumulation areas coalesced with upland ice fields centered on interfluves. During this trip, we will visit several field localities to facilitate discussions regarding the mapping of ice extent during the last glacial maximum, glacier reconstructions and their paleoclimatic significance, recent cosmogenic exposure ages obtained from moraine boulders, and several remaining "unsolved" problems within the study area. Cost: professionals, US$40; students, US$30.
6. Laramide-Age, Left-Lateral Strike Slip Faulting along the Bull Canyon Fault Zone of the Northern Uncompahgre Plateau, Western Colorado: Colorado River Raft Trip from Loma, Colorado, to Westwater, Utah. (2 days)
Sat.-Sun., 20-21 May.
— Canceled.
7. Laramide Structural Inheritance of Ancestral Rockies Folds and Faults near Almont, Colorado. (1 day)
Sat., 20 May. James C. Coogan, Western State College of Colorado, +1-970-943-3425,
Participants of this field trip will visit key exposures of two faults zones and an angular unconformity that document reactivation of Ancestral Rockies structural trends during Laramide folding and faulting in the area between the Taylor River and Cement Creek canyons northeast of Almont, Colorado. Field stops include the Roaring Judy fault zone, the Cement Creek fault zone, and the Jurassic angular unconformity that defines the regional erosion surface after Ancestral Rockies uplift. The Roaring Judy fault formed the northeastern boundary between the Ancestral Uncompahgre uplift and the Central Colorado trough in Pennsylvanian through Permian time. The fault zone was reactivated by Laramide high-angle reverse faults. The Cement Creek fault is a Laramide high-angle reverse fault that reactivated the hinge zone of an Ancestral Rockies-age anticline. The angular unconformity at the base of the Jurassic Junction Creek Sandstone truncates Ancestral Rockies structures and is folded and faulted along Laramide reverse fault zones. Observations from field stops are integrated into a palinspastic reconstruction of the northeast margin of the Uncompahgre uplift at the time of unconformity development. Leave Western State College Union at 8:30 a.m.; return at 5 p.m. Max.: 22. Cost: professionals, US$40; students, US$30; includes lunch, transportation and map.


1. Springs Inventory and Classification.
Tues., 16 May, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., half-day in classroom, half-day field trip.
Abe Springer, Northern Arizona University-Flagstaff, Arizona, Ph.D. Ohio State University; Larry Stevens, Stevens Ecological Consulting, Flagstaff, Arizona, Ph.D., Northern Arizona University. Limit: 25. Fee: US$175; includes course manual, field trip, and boxed lunch. CEU: 0.8.
This course introduces the theory and technique of inventorying spring ecosystems and how to classify springs with this inventory of information. The first half of the course is a classroom introduction to the theory and the second half is a field demonstration of the materials and techniques. Although inventory and classification of spring ecosystems has been of great interest to land and resource managers, there has been increased interest in using springs ecosystems for teaching laboratories. Springs are "windows" to aquifers that are much easier to access for teaching purposes than boreholes or wells. Springs are wonderful natural laboratories for teaching many basic concepts of hydrogeology.
2. Measurement of Indoor Radon in Geologically Diverse Terrains.
Mon.-Tues., 15-16 May, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Douglas Mose, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia, Ph.D., University of Kansas; George Mushrush, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia, Ph.D., Georgetown University. Limit: 40. Fee: US$360, includes course manual and lunch. CEU: 1.6.
This course provides hands-on training to understand, anticipate, and measure geologically dependent indoor radon and waterborne radon. The course is designed for teachers and researchers. An optional exam earns a Radon Measurement Specialist Certificate (National Radon Safety Board, for employment as a home inspector in the real estate market. A general knowledge of soil and hydrology is required. Optional Exam: Earn a Radon Measurement Specialist Certificate. Contact course instructors to arrange exam (Fee: US$150).


Mentor Programs
Roy J. Shlemon Mentor Program in Applied Geoscience. Sponsored by GSA Foundation.
Wed.-Thurs., 17-18 May, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Lunch provided; location information will be available at the meeting registration desk. Karlon Blythe,
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 each day. 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 Hydrogeology Program. Sponsored by GSA Foundation.
Wed., 17 May, 5-6:30 p.m.

The GSA Rocky Mountain Section and GSA Foundation have made travel grants available for students who are presenting oral or poster papers. Students must be currently enrolled and must be GSA Rocky Mountain Section members. Contact Kenneth Kolm, +1-303-231-9115,

Save $$ on Travel and Housing — Use the GSA Meetings Bulletin Board to arrange carpools and/or roomates.


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 should clearly identify their abstracts as student work.



A limited amount of exhibit space will be available at US$250 per booth for commercial organizations and US$100 per booth for nonprofits. Contact Robert Fillmore, +1-970-943-2650, .


For additional information, please contact one of the committee members (all at Western State College):

General Chair Vice Chair and Technical Sessions Chair Field Trip Chair
Robert Fillmore
Allen Stork
Jim Coogan