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Hydrocamp Links

UMN Hydrogeology
Field Camp

Since 1995
taught concurrently by
3 to 4 instructors ...

... from the Department of Geology and Geophysics (U. of Minnesota) (see above from left to right: Calvin Alexander, Martin Saar, Scott Alexander, and Goldy) and guest lecturers from the USGS and the Minnesota Geological Survey (MGS).    

Questions about Hydrocamp?
Please see the FAQ page for answers and (email) contact info.


Geofluids Home 

Applicatipons for Hydrocamp 2013 will be accepted starting January 1, 2013.

The course designator has changed to ESCI 4971W / 5971
as the department has changed its name to Earth Sciences.


QUOTE: "This course must be one of the best of its kind in the country - if not in the world." From anonymous teaching evaluation (Hydrocamp Participant, 2010)
QUOTE: "I just received my first offer from an environmental consulting firm in New England called Woodard and Curran. Hydrocamp convinced me that I would enjoy doing fieldwork and I know that the experience I gained directly contributed to this offer, so thank you so much! I strongly believe that this field camp gave me a huge advantage over other applicants." Cassidy McKee (Hydrocamp Participant, 2006)
QUOTE: "After completing the hydrocamp as my final credits for my degree, within a month and a half I had a job set up with an environmental consulting firm in Portland, OR. I definitely believe that having the hydrocamp on my resume helped get me the interview, and relating those experiences during the interview undoubtedly put me ahead of the competing applicants. In addition, the binder of materials, examples, and projects will provide me with a great set of resources that will come in handy." Chris Kramer (Hydrocamp Participant, 2006)
QUOTE: "... I wanted to say thank you for all the hydrology tools and techniques that I learned in your classes, you wouldn't believe how many I use each and every day here at work. Slug tests, pump tests, baildown test, estimating aquifer size, transmissivity, storativity, estimating extent of contaminant plumes, and the list goes on and on, not to mention all the software I learned about ..." Trevre Andrews, The RETEC Group, Inc. (Hydrocamp Participant, 2005)

Announcements for Hydrocamp 2013

  • Hydrocamp will be held from Monday, July 15, 2013 through Saturday, August 3, 2013. Please arrive in Minneapolis the day before the official start date and schedule your departure from Minneapolis after 3pm on the last official day of the camp.

  • The department has changed its name to "Earth Sciences." As a result, the course designator has changed to ESCI 4971W / 5971, which you may find on your bill.

  • location: Minneapolis, MN, for 1 week and north-central Minnesota for 2 weeks.

  • estimated costs: roughly $3000 to $3800, however, costs could go up on the order of 5%. For details click here.

  • credits: 4 undergraduate or 2 graduate field camp credits, for details click here.

For more information click on the "Hydrocamp Links" near the upper-left corner!


This is an intensive three week field course (ESCI 4971W for 4 undergrad credits and 5971 for 2 graduate credits) that is offered most summers, typically from mid-July through the beginning of August. The course is designed to teach students how to solve hydrogeologic problems by collecting and analyzing hydrogeologic, physical, and chemical field data. Students gain proficiency using state-of-the-art equipment as they study the surface and subsurface flow within an instrumented watershed. Specific field laboratories and other field camp features include:

  • Hydrogeologic mapping and surveying using GPS and conventional surveying tools.
  • Recognition, location and manipulation of hydrologic features and information in a GIS environment on laptops.
  • Water quality sampling: sampling, field tests, chemical analysis, interpretation and reporting.
  • Drill rig observation: split-spoon sampling, description and textural analysis, observation of well construction.
  • Bore hole geophysical techniques as they apply to bedrock and unconsolidated aquifers.
  • Single- and multiple-well aquifer testing techniques and data analysis using conventional and computational methods.
  • Stream gauging and surface water monitoring.
  • Analyzing Ground water/surface water interactions including lakes and wetlands.
  • Groundwater flow and pump test modeling using field data.
  • Time for write-ups and extra-curricula activities (e.g., beach volleyball, golf, kayaking, wood tick theater, climbing wall, ...
  • Accommodation at Deep Portage Conservation Reserve for 2 (of the 3) weeks where all meals are prepared for us and various resources are provided icluding a great common hall for work and play, a beach volleyball field, dorm rooms for about 5 students each, fire places, internet + phone access, an indoor climbing wall, and much more.

More quotations from previous participants:

These comments are selected from 15 anonymous teaching evaluations by participants of the 2005 hydrocamp only. Therefore, they do not include names.
  • "It was well organized and efficient with a great balance of lectures, field work, field trips, sufficient homework time, and just plain relaxing fun."
  • "Excellent Hands on learning."
  • "The field trips were very helpful in visualizing the aquifers that we were studying."
  • "Amazing prof., would love to do thesis/grad school (Masters) with!"
  • "I really enjoyed having him as an instructor, he showed a desire to connect with the students as well as faculty."
  • "The material was presented clearly, and if it wasn't understood, the instructor was always there to help. It was a hard, but very interesting [course]."
  • "The instructor continues to impart highly useful mathematical concepts and apply them to field situations well. He is clear, concise, detail oriented and very approachable."
  • "[professor's name] is an excellent teacher - the best I've had for the subject. He explains things in a simple, clear, and interactive way and is always willing to help, no matter how small the problem. Thank you, [professor's name]!"
  • The field camp was an overall very positive experience. The camp did a great job of covering all the vital hydro information while going into as much detail as time allowed on each subject."

The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.