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Department of Geosciences
Fort Hays State University
600 Park Street
Tomanek Hall 233
Phone: 785-628-5389

P. Grady Dixon, Chair
(785) 628-5389
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Department of Geosciences - Field Camp


Field Camp Trailer. Honk if you see us going down the road!!

2019 Field Camp


Dates: TBD (late May - mid July)
GSCI 454 - 3 credits & GSCI 454 VA 3 credits [Total 6 credit Semester Hours]

FIELD CAMP 2019 Information pending. See information below for general information.

An integrative geosciences capstone course involving a broad range of applied field techniques and procedures. Students will not only be evaluated in the field on traditional field methods such as measuring and describing stratigraphic sections, correlating stratigraphic sections, interpretation of ancient depositional environments, making geologic maps, mapping structural features, students will also complete projects on applied environmental geophysics using MagMapper, Surfer, and Grapher computer modeling, GPS, and ArcView GIS.


Field Camp heads west to Colorado and Utah, and will be taught primarily by Dr. Jonathan Sumrall. Mapping projects cover large and small sites beginning with simple to more complex in Dinosaur National Park and the San Rafael Swell of Utah, as well as in the San Juan Mountains of southwestern Colorado. These projects involve the use of bruntons, topographic and air photo base maps, and stereonets. Products include geologic maps, composite stratigraphic sections, and structural and stratigraphic cross sections, as well as supplemental interpretive reports. Students will also use a Geometrics cesium magnetometer in conjunction with GPS and GIS databases, Surfer, and ArcView GIS in an applied geophysics and scientific writing project on the FHSU campus. Note: Field Camp is physically demanding - participating studens must be in shape. At times students will be required to hike up rugged rocky slopes at elevations as low as 6000 feet up to 11,000 feet in hot weather. Students must be prepared for such respiratory demands. A typical daily routine begins with breakfast at 7:00 am, in-field projects until 4 or 5 pm, followed by supper. Evenings consist of in-camp study time in department tents or dorms. Campsites will be in national parks and private campgrounds. Students will also have access to showers, laundry, phone, etc. at most of the campgrounds, with a few exceptions - see itinerary for specifics. Course will conclude with submission of projects as well as a mineral, rock, and fossil exam.

Email instructor for documents with complete information on field camp including overview, itinerary, how to enroll, what to bring, and other important information.

How to Enroll:

If you are already an FHSU student enrolled in Dr. Jonathan Sumrall's Field Methods you will pre-enroll as you normally do using Tiger Tracks. You will also need to submit a $100 commitment deposit, complete field camp forms, and make your final fee payment as outlined in the information provided to you.

If you are not an FHSU student enrolled in Field Methods at Fort Hays State University during the spring semester please complete the following steps:

  1. To inquire about the availability of student spots, e-mail Dr. Jonathan Sumrall ( If one of the limited non-FHSU spots is open you will be asked to submit a commitment deposit and complete additional forms. Once your deposit and forms arrive, you will be placed on the camp roster.
  2. To be officially pre-enrolled you will first need to apply to become an FHSU Student: Log on to FHSU's main webpage (, select "Future Students" and "Apply Now". You will apply as a non-degree undergraduate in Geosciences. Complete the application form and submit. Next, wait at least 48 hours for your application to be processed.
  3. Once you receive notice your application has been processed go to and click on the "Newly Admitted Students" link. Select "TigerTracks/TigerEnroll Information". Follow the steps to activate your Tigertracks login.
  4. To pre-enroll go to FHSU's main webpage and click on the TigerTracks link on the upper right corner of the screen. Log in to TigerTracks. Click the "Online Services" tab then click on the "Log-in to TigerEnroll" link at the bottom of the page. Follow the step-by-step instructions to pre-enroll. You will need to enroll in two courses: GSCI 454 Field Studies in Geosciences (on-campus 3 credit hours) and GSCI 454 VA Field Studies in Geosciences (virtual 3 credit hours). If you have trouble with any of this, call 785-628-5270 and ask for Jennifer Thornton,

You will be officially enrolled when the following is complete: the field camp fee-balance and full tuition payments arrive and enrollment has been approved by Dr. Jonathan Sumrall.

Mailing contact:

Dr. Jonathan Sumrall,
Assistant Professor of Geosciences
Department of Geosciences
Fort Hays State University
600 Park Street
Hays, KS 67601


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