Because much of my fieldwork when I was in graduate school was in driving distance (many of my projects were in New Mexico and Arizona), so I’m used to being able to pack whatever I want, resulting in far too many bags for a 6 week stint in a tent. Now, I am flying, limiting me to two bags, but to make our transport around Iceland easier, I’m forcing myself to one large duffle to fit my clothes, sleeping gear, and one trowel (as opposed to my entire tool bag full of line levels, tape measures, field books, sieves, and clipboards).


My only gear allowance for this trip (cat not included) … I feel lost! 


Three weeks is a short fieldwork project for me, so while I’m trading off only one checked bag, I can pack a little less with the idea that the time I’ll be away will be much shorter than what I’m used to.  But, keeping in mind that I’m used to digging when it is about 100 degrees F and sunny, packing for 50 degrees, wind, and lots of rain, is a bit of a challenge. I stuff in as many long sleeve tees, fleeces, and winter gear as possible and leave myself room for a cozy blanket and sweats at night. While my bag is packed to the gills, I am proud of myself for fitting it all of my stuff in there! Here’s hoping it’s sufficient for the variable weather conditions…

Perhaps the most frightening item I was told to bring with me was a bug net. Once again, while working in Arizona and New Mexico, you may encounter a tarantula or centipede or two, but biting bugs are limited to certain parts of the year and can be fought off with copious amounts of DEET. Megan, my project director, immediately told me to seek a bug net out, as soon as I committed to the project.


Insert picture of me wearing bug net.


To fighting off the midges for the next three weeks…

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