Iowa State University
Carl F. Vondra Geology Field Station

Our permanent field station is a modern facility near Shell, Wyoming, on the western flank of the Big Horn Mountains, an ideal setting for geological field courses and workshops. The facilities consist of the Smith Lodge, two student dormitories, and a classroom building that are open throughout the year for educational activities by schools, industry, and government agencies.

Interested in hosting your own workshop or course at the field station?
We are here to help! Please go to our Event Reservations page for more information.


Summer 2023 Geology Field Camp (GEOL 302, 6 credits)

May 24 – June 29, 2023 – Open to ISU and non-ISU students

This summer, don’t miss an opportunity to study some of the most spectacular geological features in the world! The ISU field camp is taught in the Bighorn Basin of Wyoming, a setting that offers one of the best academic learning experiences of your life. Our instructors ascribe to the Principles of Community at Iowa State in order to provide a supportive and inclusive environment and ensure the learning and success of all students.

Detailed information for GEOL 302 – Summer 2023

Apply now for Summer 2023!


Why Attend the ISU Geology Field Camp?

The Iowa State University Geology Field Camp focuses on applied geology and will help you compete for jobs in the real world or for positions in geology graduate programs!

Our welcoming environment encourages learning in a positive atmosphere. At least two permanent instructional staff members from Iowa State are present at all times, in addition to graduate teaching assistants. Areas of expertise of the staff members include stratigraphy, sedimentology, surficial processes, structural geology, tectonics, and paleontology. We also have guest instructors from industry who lead an exercise on energy acquisition and carbon storage.

Field camp is the best opportunity you will have to be immersed in geology, learn how to interpret the rock and fossil record, develop three-dimensional thinking skills, make and read geologic maps, and evaluate the data used to make maps. Career-building skills are develop in every exercise at field camp. Students enter our program knowing some geology – they leave it with a real understanding of the practical applications of geologic knowledge.

The Geology Field Camp is held at the Carl F. Vondra Geology Field Station in the beautiful Bighorn Basin!