Graduate Student Field Trip to New Mexico and Colorado

Graduate Student Field Trip to New Mexico and Colorado
Trip a Collaboration between UH and UT-Austin

Field Trip to New Mexico and ColoradoEarlier this semester, students from the Tectonics and Sedimentation graduate class (GEOL6376) embarked on a week-long field trip to northern New Mexico and southern Colorado. The trip was a collaboration between professors Joel Saylor and Mike Murphy from the University of Houston and professor Brian Horton from the University of Texas at Austin.

Classic Mesozoic formations of the Chinle, Entrada, Morrison and Dakota painted the arid landscape where 16 UH and UT students participated in field-based exercises. The adventure began with a regional overview of the depositional, structural and volcanic history of northern New Mexico, outside of Abiquiu.

Field Trip to New Mexico and ColoradoStudents then mapped and described geologic formations around this region focusing on angular and cross-cutting relationships of strata and structure. During this exercise, the sequence of Laramide deformation, Basin and Range extension, and Cenozoic volcanic activity unfolded lending insight to the western interior geologic province of North American and contemporaneous landscape evolution over the past 150 My.

This field trip represented a unique opportunity for students to work closely with professors and other fellow graduate students in the field to develop an understanding of the tectonic evolution and sedimentary character of northern NM and southern CO. In addition, the students developed lasting collaborations and friendships.

Field Trip to New Mexico and ColoradoParticipants from UH included Ross Andrea, Clint Barnette, J. Matt Cannon, Yipeng Li, Yuribia Muñoz, Mike Murphy, Soty Odoh, Joel Saylor, Tyson Smith, Kurt Sundell, and Dustin Villarreal. Participants from UT-Austin included Doug Barber, Tomas Capaldi, Cody Colleps, Sarah George, Brian Horton, Lily Jackson, Chelsea Mackaman-Lofland, and Kelly Thomson.

- Tyson Smith and Yuribia Muñoz, EAS Graduate Students