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Adventuring in Death Valley

Norman recounts his experience visiting Death Valley with his Geology class over midterm break.

Norman recounts his experience visiting Death Valley with his Geology class over midterm break.

A Weekend Trip To Death Valley

Who would’ve thought I would be spending my midterm break adventuring in 60-degree weather?! I certainly didn’t!

Halfway through winter term, I was fortunate to go on the Death Valley field trip with my peers from my 130.00 Geology of National Parks class. The chance to visit California was incredible! As someone from the east coast, where the prominent topographic features are a high concentration of Dunkin’ Donuts, this was unfamiliar terrain. Seeing the stunning natural scenery made me think about the mysterious ways the Earth has created beautiful landscapes and mountains ranges.

My Experience

One of the places we visited was Artists Palette, an area of Death Valley where the mountains are a vivid variety of colors. The sense of freedom that I felt at such a high elevation was amazing.

When taking the photo, I was able to contemplate and take a deep breath, allowing me to live in the moment. Being in a new space has inspired me to see more of the the world and push myself out of my comfort zone.

My favorite place that we visited was the sand dunes. Walking across them made me feel like I was in a movie. Admittedly, it did get exhausting and a bit uncomfortable as the sand seeped into my shoes and socks. It’s truly amazing to think about how these dunes have formed. The wind deposits the sand over time until it collapses on itself due to weight. I recommend lying down on the sand and feeling your body slowly sink. I found it a peaceful and refreshing experience.

A Great Midterm Break Excursion

This field trip was a nice change of pace and scenery in the middle of the term. The temperature was moderately warm. Additionally, my classmates and I formed a community and bonded. Yes, the nights were a tad cold and the rocks beneath my tent did give me some back pain, but it was a nice way to experience Carleton from afar.

death valley
My classmates and me!

I’m excited to take more Geology classes at Carleton. No better department than the Geology Department!

Norman is a freshman from Pawtucket, Rhode Island, who is excited to experience the Minnesota winters and Northfield’s culture. His curiosity for quantum mechanics has caused both a headache and an interest in Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, and Economics! At Carleton, he wants to participate in a variety of clubs and indulge himself in the unknown. In his free time, Norman can be found reading a book with a cup of green tea on the side, listening to the Weeknd, or excessively online shopping. Meet the other bloggers!