GigaFlood Field Trips
Clark County: Ripple Marks, Flood Channels, History and Birds
2010 Field Trip
An all day tour of Clark County, Washington designed by Lake Missoula Floods specialist Rick Thompson who has extensively studied and mapped features in the area left by the cataclysmic ice age floods. It explored the unique geology between Vancouver USA and Woodland, Washington examining features related to a remarkable history of the cataclysmic Lake Missoula Floods that occurred at the end of the last ice age.
Some highlights of the trip include: Burnt Bridge Creek flood channel, Salmon Creek flood channel, Whipple Creek drainage channel, Gee Creek flood channel and the enormous East Fork Lewis River flood channel. Also giant current ripples in various locations; McLoughlin Heights, a huge gravel bar left by the floods; Allen Canyon and a look at two gravel pits for a view of the gravels deposited by the floods.
At Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge is the opportunity to do bird watching and visit an archeological site and see the Plankhouse at Cathlapotle, one of the largest Chinookan settlements on the Lower Columbia River which was visited by the Lewis & Clark Corps of Discovery.
Willamette Valley: Flood Channels, Ripple Marks, Erratics and Wine
2009 Field Trip
Rick Thompson has extensively studied and mapped features in the Willamette Valley left by the cataclysmic Ice Age Floods. The tour explored the unique geology between West Linn and Salem. They examined features related to a remarkable history of Quaternary flooding that occurred assumed to have occurred 15,000 - 18,000 years ago at the end of the last ice age. Some highlights of the trip included: Tonquin flood channels, Chehalem Creek flood channel and ripple marks (giant current ripples), Yamhill - Wapato flood channel, Basket Slough - Holmes Gap flood channel, ripple marks near Amity, and the Erratic Rock State Natural Site - Bellevue Erratic. We also be stopped at Anne Amie Vineyards for wine tasting and Left Coast Cellars for a catered lunch, wine tasting and tour. These vantage points perched just above the flood deposits at 300 feet gives one an appreciation of the 400 foot levels reached at maximum flood depth.