Updated: June 30, 2017

In Fall, 2017, the NDSU Department of Geosciences will offer a 2 credit field experience course on the geology of the North Shore of Lake Superior Region. Geology majors and minors at the Freshman level are encouraged to participate. All students must have a valid passport or passcard (and international students must have an approved Canadian visa) to participate in the trip.

Geology 301 offers opportunities for studying geologic structures and relationships in the field, some potentially spectacular mineral collecting, plus opportunities to visit mine sites, both above and below surface.

Aside from the one hour orientation/organization sessions, the course includes a seven day field trip as follows:


Sept. 9 Fargo to Duluth, MN
Sept. 10 Duluth to nr. Grand Marais, MN
Sept. 11 Gunflint Trail of northern Minnesota
Sept. 12 nr. Grand Marais to Nipigon, Ontario
Sept. 13 Nipigon to nr. Grand Marais, Minnesota
Sept. 14 nr. Grand Marais to Ely, MN
Sept. 15 Ely to Fargo

Post-field course meeting times will also be arranged

Travel will be by charter bus. Overnight accommodation each night is by tent (student provided). In cases of weather related emergencies, alternative accommodations in motels may be sought at extra cost (below). Provisions for meals will be the obligation for each participant. With the exception of the first day, we will attempt to make daily stops for grocery supplies.

Projected expenses per participant (excluding tuition) (this is an estimate and is subject to change):

  • $280: Course fee covers your transportation and camping costs, a detailed guidebook, entry fees, and (hopefully) most of the cost for a group pizza party on the last night.
  • $80+ Food and beverages
  • $70 Emergency money (weather related room expenses, etc.)

Enrollment is limited to 35 students on a "first pay, first served" basis.

For further information, please contact Dr. Bernhardt Saini-Eidukat, NDSU Department of Geosciences (701 231 8785), email:

To enroll:

1. Register for Geology 301.

2. Submit your course fee. A non-refundable payment of $100 is due by Aug. 21 through the NDSU marketplace interface (details provided by email to enrolled students). The remainder of the course fee is due by Sept. 8.


3. All students must have a valid passport or passcard (and international students must have an approved Canadian visa) to participate in the trip.

4. The Department makes no guarantee regarding the quality of campgrounds, the availability of showers, toilets, or water, the regularity of meals (or other forms of "regularity"!), weather related conditions, etc. Come prepared for the worst of conditions.

5. The possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages is specifically prohibited for the duration of the field trip (NDSU Geosciences Department policy; North Dakota State University policy). Penalties include suspension of student from field trip and failure of course, with student to find own return transportation to Fargo.

6. Enrollees are reminded that they MUST have a good medical/disability policy of their own.

7. At all times, students should use all precautions possible to assure a safe trip. As faculty, we cannot supervise the activities of each of you at all times, and we trust that you have the maturity and judgment to conduct yourselves wisely, courteously, and safely.

8. Only a partial refund can be provided to enrollees who must leave the trip for medical or other reasons. As this course is tightly budgeted on a "breakeven" basis, anyone leaving the trip for any reason will be responsible for paying their own transportation back to Fargo.

9. This course is an official university function. Students on an NDSU meal plan may request a partial refund from Food Services for the seven days.

10. Students are advised to make arrangements with their instructors regarding their absence as early as possible in the semester. Instructors are not obligated to accommodate you.

11. This course grade will be evaluated on your level of active inquiry and participation during the field course, on the satisfactory submission of a field notebook, and on a separate project to be announced.