David T. Allison
Associate Professor of Geology
Department of Earth Sciences
Phone (251) 460-6381
Ext. 7574
Fax (251) 461-1487 


Estimated Cost

 USA (6 credit hours) tuition:

In-state: $1,878 (6 hr. @ $313/hr.)

Out-of-state: $3,756 (6 hr. @ $626/hr.) 
 Course Fee (including deposit): $1600 
TOTAL (in-state):  $3,478

NOTE: all students must present proof of insurance coverage for May - June 2018 by April 1, 2018 (turn in with fee).

   Course Prerequisites
Igneous & Met. Petrology (GY303) ,  Sed. Petrology (GY402), Structural Geology (GY403), First Aid (HS170 or Red Cross equivalent); or permission of instructor

Other Requirements

1.      Proof of Medical Insurance for May-June 2017 (photocopied Medical ID card is sufficient)

2.      Students must sign a liability release for access to Murchison Ranch while in Texas (forms turned into Instructor)

3.      See GY480 course syallabus for detailed equipment/tools list


Important 2017 Dates 

Deadline for $200 deposit: March 1, 2018
Deadline for $1400 remainder of fee: April 1, 2018

Mobile to Cheaha State Park, AL: May 7, 2018

Mobile to Huntsville S.P., TX: May 16, 2018

Arrive at  Inks Lake S.P.,TX : May 17

Arrive at Palo Duro S.P. TX: May 26

Arrive at Pilar, NM: May 27

Arrive at Great Sand Dunes N.M. CO June 5

Depart for Oklahoma: June 6

Depart for Hot Springs, AR: June 7

Vans arrive back in Mobile: June 8
All projects due by: June 5


Accommodations & Camping

May 7-13, 2018

May 7-13: Cheaha State Park, AL

(tent camping)


May 14-15, 2018: Break in Mobile AL

May 16, 2018: Huntsville State Park, TX


May 17 - May 24, 2018:
Inks Lake State Park, Texas
(tent camping)  (Images)

Meals @ Inks Lake: dinner at campsite on weekdays

May 25-26, 2018: Palo Duro State Park, TX (tent camping)

May 27- June 5, 2018: Rio Bravo  Campground @ Pilar NM (tent camping)

Meals @ Rio Bravo: dinner at campsite on weekdays

June 6: depart for Oklahoma (motel)

June 7: depart for Hot Springs, AR (motel)

June 8: depart for Mobile, AL

Optional post-GY480 Trip: June 5- June 15
North Rim Grand Canyon National Park 
 (tent camping site)

Google links to Campsites

(use Google Earth to load files)

Field Geology Gear Links

REI  Outfitters: Camping Gear, GPS, Backpacks, Outdoor Clothing

Campmor Outfitters: Camping Gear, Outdoor Clothing, Lanterns, Headlamps

Forestry Suppliers, Inc.: Good source for rock picks, GPS, Drafting supplies, Pocket transit, Notebooks, First Aid kits, Insect repellents.

Textbook (Compton, 1985, Geology in the Field)

Pocket Transit (Brunton Compass; Azimuth International is best)

Field Notebook (select Transit style)

Rock Pick (Rock hammer)

GPS (Same type used by Earth Sciences Dept)

Mountain Press Publishing: source of Roadside Geology book series. Informative reading for those long van rides, and a reference for regional geology information useful in written reports.

NOTE: the above gear sources are not endorsed by the University of South Alabama or the instructor. These are simply sources discovered by the instructor or previous students that have had good value and service. Students may find better “bang for the buck” at other sites.

GY480 Guidelines and Forms


1. Geologic Map and Cross-section Requirements.

2. Total Station checklist.

3. 1:12,000 Geologic Mapping checklist.

4. Lithologic description checklist.

5. Equal-area stereographic net and Counting net.

6. Van passenger list.

7. Murchison Release Form

8. GY480 Enrollment Checklist


See the course syllabus  for equipment requirements and an outline of course projects: GY480 Course Syllabus


Check out the GY480 Field Geology Virtual Tour for a preview of the Geology

*Deposits and fees are payable to the Student Accounting – get account information from department administrative assistant

Please contact me at for more information!


Web page maintained by:
David Allison

University of South Alabama

Department of Earth Sciences

                       Last modified: 1/1/2018