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2022 Field Trips

Clemson Hydrogeology Symposium

Clemson Hydrogeology Symposium

Registration is open for the Spring 2022 Field Trips

All trips are 8 hour/CEC events.
If registered, you will receive an update on times and locations.
Lunch is provided.

Geologic Conundrums and Landslide Deposits on the trail to Moonshine Falls

Dates: March 31 and April 1, 2022
Level of Fitness: Medium
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Moonshine Falls in klippe of TFF amphibolite

This 4-mile round trip hike on relatively flat ground, with a creek crossing, will examine klippes of Tallulah Falls Formation (TFF) belonging to the Six Mile thrust sheet surrounded by Table Rock gneiss of the Walhalla thrust sheet.  The goal is to reconcile the structural position of the klippes with the tectono-stratigraphic sequence in the upstate of SC.  After crossing Matthews Creek, the influence of the 1000 foot + headwall of Table Rock gneiss will be evidenced by numerous rockfall and debris flow deposits that have shaped the direction and morphology of the creek systems.  Moonshine Falls is in another TFF klippe.  Excellent exposures of the TFF amphibolite can be observed under the falls. While the waterfall is small, it is unique (see video below).

TFF amphibolite with boudins underneath falls.

 

Small person field trips Spring/Summer 2022

These trips have a max of 15 attendees and require at least five participants one week before the trip date.  If the weather is inclement, the trip is pushed back one week.  All trips are 8 hours.

Cost: $140, $180 for the river trips

Feb 25. Introduction to thrust sheets of the SC Upstate.

Difficulty: Easy, short walking, but mostly roadside geology
Description: Starting from Clemson, the three major thrusts sheets will be examined with an emphasis on understanding their diversity and how to recognize their textural differences.  The trip will end up on the highest point of SC: Sassafras Mtn.

 

Mar 18. Rim of the Gap hike. - FULL

Difficulty: Strenuous, cliffside trail for first two miles, loses ~1500’ in elevation
Description: This six-plus mile hike starts at Caesars Head State Park and ends up at Jones Gap State Park.  Spectacular exposures of Table Rock gneiss are exposed along the rim trail, and then klippes of Tallulah Falls Formation are encountered along the top of Little Pinnacle Mtn.

 

April 15. Hospital Rock to Falls Creek Falls hike, Jones Gap State Park.

Difficulty: Strenuous. 
Description.: This is a textbook introduction to landslides that occur along the Blue Ridge escarpment.  We will examine landslide deposits, diverted streams, conduit zones, and initiation sites along this seven-mile hike.  Starting at the Middle Saluda River in JGSP, we ascend ~1500’ of the escarpment crossing over the Seneca and Caesars Head faults, traverse the ridge and descend to the base of 250’ high Falls Creek Falls.

 

April 22. Shining Rock Hike. 

Difficulty: Moderate-Strenuous. 
Description: Located entirely in the Ashe Metamorphic Suite, this 6-mile hike will examine geomorphological controls on the evolution of this region.  Classic heath balds of the southern Appalachians will be traversed and the 50-foot-wide quartzite intrusion called Shining Rock will be placed in context.  Fantastic 360 views.

 

June 3.  Introduction to thrust sheets of the SC Upstate. 

Difficulty: Easy, short walking, but mostly roadside geology
Description: Starting from Clemson, the three major thrusts sheets will be examined with an emphasis on understanding their diversity and how to recognize their textural differences.  The trip will end up on the highest point of SC: Sassafras Mtn.

 

June 10. Panthertown Valley hike.

Difficulty: Moderate
Description:  Starting in the Toxaway Dome, we will make observations of that formation and then drive to the Cold Mtn. parking lot, stopping once to delineate the transition between the Ashe Metamorphic Suite and the Whiteside granite/gneiss (Wg). A four-mile loop hike on mostly level ground that will examine a unique rock dome ecosystem composed of Wg with fantastic views and a descent to scenic Schoolhouse Falls.

 

June 17. Chattooga River Trip

Difficulty: Moderate. Must be able to carry an inflatable boat to and from river and be in overall very good physical condition.
Description: The first three miles of Section III will be traversed.

 

June 24. Advanced Chattooga River Trip

Difficulty: Strenuous.  Having attended a previous river trip with Clemson is required, or permission of the leader.
Description: The lower part of Section 3 will be traversed.