Clothing, Equipment, & Supply List

Clothes appropriate for field work in a wide range of weather conditions

Field clothes, field boots, and field equipment, including geologic hammer and hand lens must be purchased before arriving in Bozeman.

Because of the highly variable temperature from morning to afternoon on a typical field day, a windbreaker over a sweater or sweatshirt is a more versatile field dress than a heavy jacket over just a t-shirt.

At least two pairs of hiking or work boots are strongly advised; sneakers are unsatisfactory for virtually all of the field work.

Rain gear that is compact enough to be easily carried in a simple day pack is a must. A hat or cap for protection against both rain and sun will be necessary
for your times away from the field. Comfortable and casual clothing is suitable.

Clothing list
  • T-shirts, long sleeved shirts, and a sweater or sweatshirt for dressing in layers (We typically work 6-day or 7-day We have several free washing machines, but you will be sharing them with about 60 other people, so plan accordingly.)
  • Field pants (at least two pairs of sturdy long pants are strongly recommended)
  • Hiking/work boots (two pairs recommended) – we will be hiking about 10 miles plus climbing up/down an average of 1,500’ vertical relief each day. Some areas have abundant prickly pear cactus.
  • Multiple pairs of socks
  • Light weight “scree” gaiters (optional, but highly recommended because many of the  grasses will be in seed and get stuck in your boot laces and socks)
  • Sun/rain hat
  • Rain jacket
  • Rain pants, easy to put on and take off (optional, but recommended)
  • Light weight jacket
  • Warm hat/cap and gloves (We can have had snow at IUGFS in July!)
  • Casual clothing for around camp
  • Bathing suit (optional, for swimming in the South Boulder River)
  • Water shoes (Teva or Keen sandals, old tennis shoes, ; highly recommended for everybody, required for the environmental concentration)
  • Flip flops or shower shoes (optional, but highly recommended)

Equipment & Field Supplies

Field equipment, including geologic hammer and hand lens, will be needed on the caravan trip, so they must be purchased before arriving in Rapid City. Some other equipment, including: aerial photographs, stereoboard, and a Brunton compass, will be supplied by Indiana University for use during the course. Although we supply Bruntons to all who do not bring them, it will be more convenient for you if you are able to borrow one from your home department or bring your own for the course. Yes, Bruntons are the type of compass that must be used.

Students will be charged if loaned equipment is damaged or lost.

We will not have any shopping opportunities during the course, so you should plan to bring what you need. We will have some standard field and office supplies available for purchase at cost and you can get USPS, UPS or FedEx deliveries:  c/o Judson Mead Geologic Field Station, 633 South Boulder Rd., Cardwell MT 59721.

Course equipment list
  • Geologic hammer (and a hammer belt holster is highly recommended)
  • Notebook case or field pouch
  • A belt for your hammer, field pouch and Brunton compass
  • Safety glasses and/or shatter-proof sunglasses
  • Hand lens with lanyard (10x is recommended)
  • Personal first aid kit (you can resupply it from the first aid kits in the Lodge and Classroom buildings)
  • Your favorite blister prevention and treatment (mole skin, Glacier Gel, Second Skin)
  • Water bottles (you will need at least three liters of water in the field most days)
  • Day pack to hold
    • 3-5 liters of H2O
    • lunch
    • first aid kit
    • rain gear
    • extra clothing
    • geology field gear (i.e. clipboard, map board, etc.)
  • Watch (pocket or wrist, not your phone)
  • Pocket knife
  • Two or three pencils (0.5 mm mechanical pencils are recommended)
  • Pens (black, blue, green and red; Pilot razor point fine line are recommended)
  • Colored pencils (24 colors; Prismacolor Col-erase or Verithin are recommended)
  • Eraser(s)
  • 6-inch ruler and a small protractor (can be a single unit or two separate items)
  • We will supply you with two steno notebooks and have extras available to purchase at cost. However, if you want to use your favorite field notebook, please bring two (to cover the turn-around time for grading).
  • Calculator (or use an app on your phone)
  • Laptop computer (optional)

Personal Items

  • Sleeping bag (optional, but highly recommended; required if you are taking the structural geology concentration). Dorms are not heated. The nights can get down to 30°F (0°C) and we will be asking you to keep the windows open as much as possible for clean air ventilation. If you choose not to bring a sleeping bag, please bring a good blanket.
  • Sheets for a long twin bed (or sleeping bag liners)
  • Pillow(s)
  • Towels and wash cloths
  • Personal soap, shampoo,
  • Other personal grooming items
  • Medications to last for the full duration of your course (five or six weeks)
  • Sunscreen

We have free, unlimited use washing machines, driers, and clothes lines. We also supply laundry soap pods.

Miscellaneous Items

  • Small tent for weekend camping (optional, but highly recommended for structural geology concentration)
  • If you want to bring your favorite candy, junk food, etc., please also bring a hard, air- tight container to keep it We have a lot of wildlife around IUGFS, large and small.
  • Alarm clock (battery operated)
  • Bug spray
  • Deck of cards, musical instrument, Frisbee, (optional)
  • Small padlock