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Saskatchewan through the unique lens of geologists

By Costa Maragos Posted: December 9, 2016 6:00 a.m.

The 2017 Saskatchewan Geology Calendar calendar is a collaborative effort. The team members include (l-r) Janis Dale associate professor (geology), Ken Ashton adjunct professor, department of geology, ministry of the economy; Monica Cliveti lab instructor; Ralf Maxeiner, alumni and ministry of the economy; and Michelle Hanson, alumna and ministry of the economy.
The 2017 Saskatchewan Geology Calendar calendar is a collaborative effort. The team members include (l-r) Janis Dale associate professor (geology), Ken Ashton adjunct professor, department of geology, ministry of the economy; Monica Cliveti lab instructor; Ralf Maxeiner, alumni and ministry of the economy; and Michelle Hanson, alumna and ministry of the economy. Photo: External Relations

They are photos of formations that only a geologist can capture showing Saskatchewan, in all its geological splendor.

The department of geology is once again a key contributor to the Saskatchewan Geology Calendar. It’s now for sale at the U of R bookstore.

Month after month, the calendar features some of Saskatchewan’s geological wonders, ranging from a sweeping view of the magnificent Frenchman River Valley to microscopic photos of rocks and minerals.

Monica Cliveti
Monica Cliveti, lab instructor in the geology department, shows us September, featuring the amazing architectural details of a tiny microfossil. 

The calendar is a collaborative effort from members of the Saskatchewan Geological Society involving the U of R geology department and alumni, the University of Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan ministry of the economy, and J.D. Mollard and Associates.

The members work together to educate and showcase the amazing geology of Saskatchewan.

“The photos were taken by geologists working in the field, and this year we added the winning geological photos taken by the public who entered our first photo contest,” says Dr. Janis Dale associate professor in the geology department and a member of the calendar committee.  

“This is the only calendar in the prairies that not only showcases the beauty of our province, but explains how the features formed and their significance. Saskatchewan has some of the most amazing geological features from world-class sand dunes to huge glacial valleys. It is not just flat.”

Janis Dale
Dr. Janis Dale, associate professor in the geology department, took this photo of the Frenchman River Valley near the Cypress Hills. 

Here are some examples as shown in the calendar:

  • April features the Williams River cutting across raised beaches of glacial Lake Athabasca.
  • June has pictographs on Black Bear Island Lake, probably drawn by First Nations youth. 
  • October shows us the magnificent Whitemud Formation near Avonlea. 

The calendar is written in easy-to-understand language with information for children and adults alike.  

Featured throughout the calendar are ‘did you know’ and ‘fun facts.’  

For example, the clay mined from Whitemud was made into bricks used in the construction of the Delta Bessborough Hotel in Saskatoon. The calendar includes historical geological events like the eruption of Mt. St. Helens May 18, 1980.

“Even practising professionals will learn something new,” says Dale.

The 2017 Saskatchewan Geology Calendar is available for sale at some locations throughout the city, including the U of R bookstore, the Department of Geology, the Saskatchewan Royal Museum and the Mackenzie Art Gallery. You can also call 306-585-4049 or 306-585-4840 to order a copy.