Six things I have learnt from my Namibian fieldwork

1) Never let yourself be talked into using a Mahindra as a field vehicle. They may almost look the part:


but they’re about as tough as a chocolate teapot in a blast furnace.

2) Conversely, magic putty is not just good for fixing paleomag gear, but is also of great help in patching clutch hydraulic lines which are routed too close to hot engine parts.


Sadly, it is of less use when the whole engine explodes and strands you 400 miles from both the nearest qualified mechanic and the closest 4×4 rental agency.
3) Never pass up an opportunity to stock up on petrol, camping gas, food or any other equipment , because more often than not the next town on your map of Namibia is still waiting for its horse. And, in one case, houses and people too.
4) I am apparently much better at finding Precambrian fossils than post-Cambrian ones.
5) Sampling thinly bedded, flat lying sediments for paleomag is a right pain in the posterior*
6) Compared to American postgrads, my coffee addiction is fully under control. Which, since said postgrad students kept on drinking it all, is a good thing.
The last three weeks have been great – there’s nothing like getting out there amongst some cool geology to re-enthuse you – and I have lots of interesting and photogenic things to share with you in the next week or so. Stay tuned.
*technically, I knew this one already, but there’s nothing like a hard-earned reminder.

Categories: bloggery, fieldwork, geology, ranting

Comments (3)

  1. Lab Lemming says:

    Great desert pavement shot there in photo number two…

  2. Harold Asmis says:

    Where are the hungry lions eating the car?

  3. Mark P says:

    You will undoubtedly be pleased to learn that a business in Atlanta is now signing up dealers to sell Mahindra SUVs and pickups in the US, starting possibly in 2009. I have my doubts that it will come to pass, but who knows.