You may all be wondering why you’re only just hearing from us in July although we’ve been in Panama since the last days of May. Many more of you may know that we spent the intermediate time working on the Azuero Peninsula; here’s a bit about that experience.
The three weeks in Azuero were spent working and living in close quarters with a class (15 students) from the Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia.
Communication was primarily in Spanish, so we experienced near complete immersion in the language on top of having the opportunity to practice field techniques while learning the geology of an area entirely new to us. It was doubly exciting as the western portion of the Azuero Peninsula is covered little in the overall body of geologic literature providing an opportunity for us to make meaningful contributions to science through assisting the class.
For the most part, work took place in streams or on the beach, tides permitting. It was hot, difficult, and a lot of fun. Some days we spent scouting unfamiliar streams to look for new outcrops to refine our geologic map and to take samples from. Many times, we walked away from these scouting days empty handed, having found only alluvium covering the river banks and cowpies littering the we crossed to reach them. You can read more about our experiences in Azuero in the July issue of the PIRE newsletter.