national parks guide

Welcome to the final project of your geology laboratory! For this final project you will explore one of our great National Parks! Using what you have learned throughout this semester, Google Earth, and other resources, you will need to put together a tour guide of 2 sites within a National Park. You have recently been hired as the park tour guide and are getting ready to take your first group of tourists through geological localities. In order to prepare, you must type a report of where you will take them and what you want to show them!

The report should be a minimum of 1500 words (Citations are not included in the wordcount), 12-point font, Times New Roman, double-spaced, and include one figure or picture for each site. You will need to do a little research. Be sure to cite your sources! is a great course of information! Uncited information is considered plagiarism, as well as paraphrasing information without a proper citation. We need to know where you got this information and give credit to those researchers!

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To do this, I would recommend by first using this link provided: earth/?fbclid=IwAR1gA6VcbvGoMJR1vzOcIY-aExPeik9TGUgRwt8mIi0L8t7DgmruxyhgvDU

Click the hyperlink “Guided Tour” on the website and it will open up a google Earth browser. You may need to use Google Chrome for the extension to work. From there, you may

choose your National Park. Scroll through the famous locations and choose 3 sites where you would like to take your tour group!

The general outline of the report will look like this:


Welcome your guests! Introduce yourself. Give a general background of your Park as a whole. When was it opened as a National Park? Who was involved in creating it? Geological Overview – age range of rocks, major geological process responsible for its formation (i.e., glacial erosion, uplift, fluvial processes, volcanism, etc..).

Site 1:

Where are you? How long of a hike was it? Explain the visible rock units: age, type of rock (sedimentary, metamorphic, igneous), how were the rocks weathered or deposited, talk through the visible evidence seen at that site for the formation process(es) responsible for the view (ex; At Glacier National Park, you can see U-shaped valleys which are indicative of glacial erosion). Are there any fossils? Lastly, point out any other features that look interesting (ex; A tourist might ask why a younger rock unit is above an older rock unit, or what causes the spectacular colors in the hydrothermal pool at Yellowstone).

Do the same for Site 2 – 3

Concluding Remarks:

What did you learn from this exercise? What other National Parks are you intrigued to see?! Which other 2 parks are you interested in geologically? Why?




Big Bend

Black Canyon

Bryce Canyon


Channel Islands


Death Valley


Dry Tortugas



Grand Canyon

Grand Teton

Great Smoky Mountains


Joshua Tree

Mesa V erde

Mount Rainier



Rocky Mountain



Virgin Islands

Wind Cave

Y ellowstone

Y osemite


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