BURREN GEOLOGY SCHOOL AT CAHERCONNELL – 6ECTS or 3 Credit hours
June 16th-July 1st 2014
(JM=John Murray RH=Ronan Hennessy MW=Mike Williams TH=Tiernan Henry CB=Colin Bunce ED=Eamon Doyle)
Day 1. Monday
09.30 – 11.00 – Introduction to the Geology of Ireland (RH)
11.30 -12.30 – On the shoulders of giants, the early geologists of Ireland. (RH)
13.30 – 15.00 –The Carboniferous of Ireland (JM)
15.30 – 17.00–The Carboniferous of County Clare (JM)
Day 2. Tuesday
09.30 – 18.00 – FIELDWORK: Overview of the geology of north Clare; Blackhead, Ailladie, Poulsallagh, Doolin, St. Brendan’s well. (RH, JM, ED)
This daytrip gives an overview of the entire sequence of Asbian-Brigantian limestones along the north Clare coast. Features clay bands and palaeokarst horizons, chert horizons, the major fossil groups and the contact with the overlying goniatite-bearing shales.
Day 3. Wednesday
09.30 – 11.00—Slumps and Slides in the Pennsylvanian sediments of west Clare (ED)
11.30 – 12.30 –Deltaic sedimentation and cyclothems in the Pennsylvanian of west Clare (ED)
13.30 – 18.00–FIELDWORK: Deltaic growth faults examined from offshore Cliffs of Moher (ED)
Examination of large deltaic growth faults in the Pennsylvanian sediments of the Cliffs of Moher. This unique section provides students with an insight into growth fault dynamics unavailable in modern deltas.
Day 4. Thursday
08.00 – 18.00 –FIELDWORK: Spanish Point to Loop Head. (ED, JM, MW)
The internationally renowned Bridges of Ross section; sand volcanoes and syn-sedimentary slumping. Turbidites and channels. Basin evolution.
Day 5. Friday
09.30 – 11.00—The tectonic and structural setting of the carboniferous of Clare (ED)
11.30- 12.30—Carboniferous mineralization. (MF)
13.30 –18.00—FIELDWORK: Minerals of County Clare (MF, ED, TH)
Flourite, Calcite, Malachite, Galena, Smithsonite, Phosphate. Small abandoned mine workings from the last century dot the Burren landscape and provide information on the tectonics and fluid development of the sedimentary basin.
Day 6. Saturday
09.00-19.00—FIELDWORK Aran Islands, (ED/MW)
Comparing the limestone sequence of the Aran Islands with the onshore sequence of the Burren
Day7. Sunday [No scheduled class work or fieldtrips]
Day 8. Monday
09.30 – 11.00—The Pleistocene Glaciations (MW)
11.30 – 12.30—The Holocene; Sea-level changes and storms (MW)
13.30 – 18.00—FIELDWORK: Fanore, Poulsallagh, Doolin (MW/ED)
Glacial striations, till and erratics; the evidence from the last glaciation. Holocene Sea-level change, climate change and mega-clast storm deposits.
Day 9. Tuesday
09.30-10.30—Karst Geomorphology of the Burren I (CB)
11.00 -12.00–Karst Geomorphology of the Burren II (CB)
13.00-18.00—FIELDWORK: The development of karst landscape; Slieve Elva and Aillwee Hill (CB,ED)
A comparison of mature and immature karst landscapes and the relationship to overlying shale cover; Dolines, Identification of Karren features, Cave development and the timescale of karstification.
Day 10. Wednesday
09.00 -12.30–FIELDWORK: Exploration of karst cave systems in the Burren (CB)
13.30-18.00 –FIELDWORK: Exploration of karst cave systems in the Burren (ED)
Descent into an active cave system in the morning and a managed relic cave system in the afternoon. See Karst groundwater processes in action. Cave development, Hydrogeology, carbonate dissolution and precipitation.
Day 11. Thursday
09.30-11.00–Hydrogeology of the Burren I (TH)
11.30-12.30–Hydrogeology of the Burren II (TH)
13.30-18.00–FIELDWORK: The groundwater of the Peterswell-Kinvarra area (TH, ED)
Regional aspects of groundwater movement in a karst environment; flow rates, flood and contamination risk management.
Day 12. Friday
09.00-11.00– The palaeontology of the Carboniferous Period I (JM)
11.30-12.30–The palaeontology of the Carboniferous Period II(JM)
13.30-17.00–Labwork. Examination and identification of fossils of north Clare (JM, ED)
Day 13. Saturday
09.00—18.00 FIELDWORK: Working quarries in Clare.
Local medium and small scale quarries expose excellent geological sections; Liscannor flag and enigmatic trace fossils, Limestone and clay horizons. The quarrying process in action.
Day 14. Sunday. [No scheduled class work of fieldtrips]
Day 15. Monday
09.00 – 18.00–FIELDWORK: The Burren National Park (ED, JM). Lunch at Fr. Ted’s house.
Students compile a geological guide to Mullaghmore in the Burren National Park, one of the iconic locations of the Burren.
Day 16. Tuesday
09.00 – 18.00 –Submit Field notebooks, and 2,000 word summary reports for examination . (JM, RH, MW, TH, CB, ED)
Course Fee: €2250
- Transport to and from the site daily
- Transportation to and from the various sites you will be investigating
- Tea Breaks