Original paper

Microclimate controls on weathering, based on rephotography of an outcrop in Kansas, USA, with educational applications

Reams, Max W.

Abstract

Rephotography at outcrop scale offers opportunities to observe changes that are useful for scientific and educational purposes. North- and south-facing exposures of Upper Carboniferous marine limestones and shales on a rural highway in eastern Kansas, USA, were rephotographed over a 37-year period. Photographs taken at different seasons recorded changes due to rock weathering. The north-facing outcrop showed a stronger weathering effect than the south-facing exposure. The sequence of photographs can help university students understand microclimate controls on weathering, why a sense of rock abundances in nature is biased by the influences of weathering and vegetation cover, and how to gain a sense of geologic time by mentally extrapolating photographic sequences.

Keywords

microclimatephotoarchivephotographic surveyslandscape changerephotographyrock weatheringeducation