GeoTours is a collection of self-guided roadside geology trips for the layperson. No previous earth science knowledge or experience is required. This is a new addition and is still VERY incomplete. Check back often for enhancements and additions.

If this is your first GeoTour, or if you feel the need for a bit of general information on the earth sciences, please spend some time in the background section.

Click here to go to the background section.



The Josephine Ophiolite


Background Information

The Regional Geologic and Tectonic Setting

The Rocks

The Tours

The Smith River Section

The Turner-Albright Massive Sulfide deposit

The Galice Section

Closing Comments and Feedback



Background Section

The Interior of the Earth

The 4 states of matter

Density and specific gravity


The interior of the earth

Brittle-Ductile Transition Zone


Earth Materials

What is bedrock?

Mafic vs. felsic (minerals, magma, and rock)

What is Bowen's Reaction Series?

Oxygen, silica, and the earth's crust

Why is feldspar important?

Name five common rock-forming minerals.

The 3 basic types of rocks

Igneous Rocks

Igneous Rocks: Composition and texture

How come some dikes have smaller crystals on their edges?

Summary of Igneous Rock types

What are the most important types of rock in the crust?

Ultramafic and mafic rocks


Tectonics: Click here to jump to a general tectonic overview

Plate Tectonics overview

Characteristics of plate boundaries

Active and passive continental margins

What causes the plates to move?

Plate velocities

If Mt. St. Helens and the whole west coast is a convergent plate boundary with subduction, how come there are no volcanoes along the San Andreas fault?

Cratons and greenstone belts

What is a continental basement?



What are pyroclastic flows?


Geologic Time and Earth History

Immensity of geologic time

Absolute vs. Relative Geologic Time

What is a stratigraphic column?



The Scientific Method

Regional vs. local considerations

The "laws" of geology

Strickler's Laws of GeoFantasy

The Uncertainty Factor and GeoFantasy


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