GG 211 FIELD GEOLOGY OF HAWAII

GOAL: To study the geology of Hawaii, the Big Island, via two on-campus lectures, the field trip and directed reading.

OBJECTIVES: To spend 4 days on the Big Island to discuss, see and study the geologic structure and history of its five exposed volcanoes - Kohala, Mauna Kea, Hualalai, Mauna Loa, Kilauea - by exploration and on-site observations during a supervised and guided field trip. An optional fourth day will explore additional geologic features on Mauna Kea and Hualalai. Preceding the field trip are two lectures at WCC that introduce coming geologic attractions.

PREREQUISITE: Completion or concurrent registration in GG 101, 103, or consent of instructor.

REQUIRED PARTICIPATION: For credit, attendance on at least three days of the field trip are mandatory (if a day is missed, an assignment must be completed for credit).

REQUIRED READING: Volcanoes in the Sea, by Macdonald, Abbott and Peterson (3rd ed., UH Press); or the 2nd edition (Macdonald and Abbott); chapters 1, 2, 4, 7, 9, 13, 14 & 19 (chapters in the 3rd edition; or equivalent chapters in the 2nd edition).

FACILITIES AND FOOD: In Hilo, nights will be at the Sand and Seaside Hotel near Reed's Bay where a block of rooms are reserved. One night (prior to the optional day) is booked at the hunting lodge at Pohakuloa (Mauna Kea State Park) off the Saddle Road, sleeping in dormitories containing 8 beds (linens are furnished) or in the lodge (bring a sleeping bag) by the fireplace. You may make your own arrangements for accommodations and food then meet us each morning in the field - if you do this, be sure to let me know how to contact you on the Big Island in case of schedule changes. Breakfast and dinner shall be at local restaurants; at Pohakuloa we cook in the large kitchen at the lodge with food purchased at local stores (often a huge pot of chili and rice with salad, bread, etc. for dinner; eggs, toast, etc. for breakfast). Lunches will be in the field, purchased at a local store that morning or the night before.

TRANSPORTATION ON THE BIG ISLAND: Vans are booked. A truck will be rented if needed. Alternatively, you may make your own arrangements for cars/vans/trucks.

ITINERARY/DATES: An itinerary of daily activities during the field trip is attached; important dates to remember are these:

  • FIELD TRIP STARTS: HILO AIRPORT, 0830, FRIDAY
  • FIELD TRIP ENDS: KONA AIRPORT, 5:30 PM, MONDAY

TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS TO/FROM THE BIG ISLAND: This is your responsibility. Plan your itinerary to correspond to the field trip schedule. Arrivals after field-trip starting times cannot be accommodated, but we will wait for late arrivals on delayed flights providing we know you are on the flight. Departures from either Hilo or Kona prior to the time scheduled for the end of the field trip cannot be accommodated - we cannot get to the airport for flights booked earlier than the scheduled end of the field trip.

FIELD CONDITIONS AND CLOTHING: If we hike out over lava flows, you must have sturdy socks, hiking boots and long pants (required by Volcanoes National Park). If active lava flows are within reach, consider gloves and flashlights (the former should we attempt to sample the lava, the latter in case of a night hike to the flow fronts). But also bring shorts, tee-shirts, a bathing suit, etc. On the third day, it will be COLD during the evening at Pohakuloa (2,600 m - 8,500 ft.) and VERY COLD during the following day at the summit of Mauna Kea (4,200 m - 13,800 ft.) - bring long pants, a warm sweater, shoes and socks, and a windbreaker (it has snowed on previous trips). We shall hike to Lake Waiau, a 2 km (1.2 mi.) walk that is difficult at the 3000 m (10,000 ft.) altitude - not a hike for smokers or those with respiratory problems - those not hiking will remain with the cars or return to Pohakuloa.

EXPENSES/DEPOSIT: Students are responsible for all expenses - air transportation, ground transportation (we share in the costs of the vans), lodging (the amount depends upon how many share a room), and food. Estimated total costs (airfare, rental vans, rooms, food) would be on the order of $250. You are responsible for making your air travel arrangements, and paying for them. We share costs for vans and hotel rooms; these are calculated at the end of the trip, and any costs in excess of the deposit are collected. Be aware that once you commit to share in van rental/gas costs - and vans are booked - you contribute to these costs even if you ride in a private car later during the field trip (unless previous arrangements were made). Hotel policy demands rooms be assigned, although this can be modified after check-in. A deposit of $150 is required if you stay at the hotel and ride in the rental vans - those making their own arrangements for rooms and cars need not pay the deposit.

FINAL EXAMINATION AND GRADING: A course grade will be determined by accomplishment on a final written examination, which will be scheduled at a mutually convenient time. Grades assigned with: A = 90-100 points, B = 80-89 points,
C = 70-79 points, D = 60-69 points; less than 60 points = fail (F). Under special conditions, with consent of the instructor, a grade for no credit (NC) could be given.
An evening review session often precedes the final examination, to look at pictures, slides, videos, then discuss the trip - and eat, of course, via pot-luck dishes. The final examination date is scheduled for the next week after the field trip, to be taken in the Learning Center anytime between Monday and Friday.

ADDITIONAL NOTES AND CONSTRAINTS: This is a University of Hawaii accredited course, thus no liquor or drugs are allowed during official activities.
Spouses and children may come along, but realize their interests may not match yours (i.e., they'll want to go home early), and your full participation is required for credit.
Private arrangements often are made for rooms and cars. Plan to meet each day at either the first field-site or at a pre-arranged location.
This is a one (1) credit course. No special preparation is required. Recommended basic skill-levels are college level reading capability. At WCC, this course partially satisfies AA degree requirements and counts as a laboratory course in physical science. At UHM, this course partially satisfies the requirement in the General Education Core, as well as in the College of Arts and Sciences.
Portions of the trip involve hiking, sometimes over difficult terrain, that can be physically demanding. Be aware that participation on such hikes requires appropriate physical prowess and conditioning (should this not be the case, you can wait in the vans for our return without jeopardy to successfully completing the course).

*** AN ADVANCE DEPOSIT REQUIRED - - SEE DR. MCCOY FOR DETAILS ***
The deposit covers the cost of hotel rooms, vans and gas;
no deposit needed if you rent your own car and do not stay at the hotel)

University of Hawaii - Windward
45-720 Kea'ahala Rd.
Kaneohe, HI 96744 USA
Site URL:http://www.wcc.hawaii.edu/facstaff/mccoy-f/