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Photos of fieldwork in Patagonia

March 7, 2009

I am back in the States and very slowly reconnecting myself to the internet. The contrast from little to no connectivity while traveling and doing field work to full connectivity back at home is a bit overwhelming . It may take me a week or so to get back into the swing of things.

To get things started, here are some photos from this recent trip. I’ve chosen photos that I think nicely portray what it is like to hike around some of these mountains.

The main goal of the field work that me and a colleague did for the five days following our conference was to put some detailed work into a regional context. So instead of measuring a lot of section and doing very detailed stratigraphic characterization, we spent our time looking at some rocks we had not visited before to test some ideas about regional correlation. The rocks weren’t spectacularly exposed but good enough address our concerns about the stratigraphy of the basin at the scale of 10s of km.

First, here is our trusty camioneta (pick-up truck) on a gravel road.

The road to Chingue (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

The road to Chingue (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

For two days we hiked up a pretty big hill to see the rocks exposed at the top, which gave us a spectacular view of the landscape.

Rio de las Chinas from Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Rio de las Chinas from Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

What never comes through in these photos is the Patagonian wind … I nearly fell over trying to take this photo (and many others that day).

Looking north to Sierra Dorotea (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Looking north to Sierra Dorotea (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

On the very top of one of the mountains we hiked up.

On top of Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

On top of Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

The week had very typical Patagonia weather … partly cloudy and extremely windy. One of the good things about the wind is that it makes it difficult for any precipitation to set up — the clouds are blown away too quickly. When the wind stops, the clouds build up and it can get nasty. Luckily, this didn’t happen to us last week.

Looking south to Cerro Sol (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Looking south to Cerro Sol (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

I obviously show a lot of photos of exposed rock on this blog but we spend a lot of time hiking across the grass-covered hills just to get to the rocks.

Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

The Rio de las Chinas is a beautiful meandering river that one can only see if they spend the time hiking up the adjacent hills. This view is to the west with the Patagonian Andes proper off in the distance.

Rio de las Chinas from Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Rio de las Chinas from Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

The typical inhabitants of the area.

Sheep on Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Sheep on Cerro Cazador (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Finally … our standard lunch in the field: salami and mustard on semi-stale bread … yum! That reminds me, I need to clean my knife now. Last time I forgot and found some salami fat still embedded in it when I opened the blade months later.

Lunch in the field (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

Lunch in the field (© 2009 clasticdetritus.com)

I did not take any photos during the conference — was WAY too busy. This was the first time I have run a conference that included days in the field. It was a lot of work making sure all the logistics were always lined up correctly each day. In the field, I was either leading the group to the outcrop, but more often I let my co-convenors lead the group while I was the “sweeper” in the back of the pack. At some points I felt like a sheep dog rounding up the strays. More about the conference in later posts.

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Note: Zoltan attended the conference — check out a few of his photos (including a gigapan!).

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