Owyhee Geology Series

Learn About the Owyhee’s Unique Geologic History

The Owyhee is a geologist’s (and aspiring geologist’s) dream landscape. It’s incredibly diverse, containing geologic formations in the billions of years near the top of the watershed to geologically young formations only tens of millions of years old. There is a fascinating amount of information to explore, and local geologist Sammy Castonguay (M.Sc. Geological Sciences) is your guide to cracking the mystery wide open.

Sammy, a trained field geologist and college instructor, initially piloted this program as a short weekend trip. Due to increased interest and such geological diversity in the area, it has expanded into a 10-part series.

2017 Succor Creek Geology Tour-Becky Ree
2017 Succor Creek Geology Tour-Becky Ree

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2017 Succor Creek Geology Tour-Becky Ree
2017 Succor Creek Geology Tour-Becky Ree

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Participants are welcome to come on select trips or participate in each day outing—each lecture is able to stand alone. The content covers plenty of basics, so no experience is necessary. We’ll make firsthand scientific observations, delve into interpretation, and utilize previous mapping efforts to supplement our findings.


These trips are great for novices and experts alike—rockhounds, geologic history fans, and anyone age 12 and up is more than welcome to attend. At the end of the series, our trip leader Sammy will give a public presentation to summarize the trips.

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What to Expect

What to wear:

  • Hiking clothes (comfortable, flexible clothing)

  • Hiking boots or sturdy trail shoes

  • Sunhat & sunglasses

  • Rain jacket

  • Warm jacket, hat, gloves

What to bring: 

  • Day backpack

  • Water bottle & plenty of water 

  • Lunch 

  • Notebook, clipboard, pencils/pens

  • Rock hammer

  • Hand lens

  • Headlamp

  • Camera/phone

  • Prescription medications

  • Geologic gear (optional)

  • Hiking poles (optional)


  • Field trip guide with map and descriptions

  • Geologic fun, educational information

  • Navigational lead

Trips in this Series

Silver City
Saturday, August 28, 2021

Hike-based trip

Meet at:

Highway 95 and Silver City Road

Independence Mountains
Sat & Sun, September 25–26, 2021
6PM–3PM (next day) MDT

Hike-based, overnight trip

Meet at:

Jacks Creek Campground

South Mountain
Saturday, October 23, 2021

Hike-based trip

Meet at:

Jordan Valley City Park

Final Presentation
Thursday, November 18, 2021
5:30–8 PM

Lecture to summarize trip series

Location TBD in Ontario, OR