2015 Summer Soil ID Course: The Lower Fraser Valley



Come join the PRSSS for an exciting soil identification course in Abbotsford and Langley, British Columbia! Become and stay conversant with soil description and interpretation for resource use in BC with the wonderful Les Lavkulich, Kent Watson, Liz Kenney, Chuck Bulmer, Paul Sanborn, Maija Finvers, Maja Krzic, and Shannon Berch: soil scientists and mentors.

Learning Outcomes:

1) know how to texture soil

2) know how to dig a soil pit for description and interpretation purposes

3) know how to differentiate and describe horizons

4) know the basic approach to interpreting soil and landscape for various possible land uses



Participants in this soil ID course should have some background in soil science and have taken at least an introductory soils course.


Cost and Credits:

This field course costs $120, payable in advance. This does not include transportation, accommodation, or meals.

University credit is available to students at Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia. Contact Dr. Margaret Schmidt to inquire about credit at SFU and Dr. Maja Krzic about credit at UBC.



Monday, May 25:

Evening: arrive at the University of Fraser Valley or campground

Tuesday, May 26:

8:30 am – 12:00 pm                         Introductory lecture and hand-texturing exercise

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm                          Lunch

1:00 pm – 4:00 pm                            Soil pit 1, Abbotsford

Wednesday, May 27:

8:30am – 12:00 pm                         Soil pit 2, south Abbotsford

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm                         Lunch

1:00 pm – 4:00 pm                          Soil pit 3, east/south Abbotsford

Thursday, May 28:

8:30am – 12:00 pm                        Soil pit 4, Fort Langley

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm                       Lunch

1:00 pm – 4:00 pm                         Soil pit 5, Langley



Baker House, University of Fraser Valley

33844 King Rd, Abbotsford BC V2S 7M8


70 units available; each features 2 private bedrooms, a kitchenette, and a full bathroom.

  • Bedrooms are hard wired for internet; contain a twin bed, desk, dresser, night table, and chair.
  • Kitchenettes include a mini-fridge, microwave, and phone for free local calling.
  • There are common rooms on each floor that have a TV, DVD player, coffee maker, and toaster.

Special Group Rates*,**

Hotel Hostel
$40.00 $25.00

*Groups of ten or more.

** Minimum 2 night stay, rates are per person per day, subject to GST.

Hotel rate: includes linen, blanket, pillow, soap, shampoo and towels.

Hostel rate: bring your own sleeping bag, pillow, soap, shampoo and towels.

More information regarding booking will be provided upon acceptance into the course.



You are responsible for bringing and preparing all your own food.



The University of Fraser Valley is located about 70 km from Vancouver just off Highway 1.

  • Take the McCallum Rd exit, exit 90.                                                                           5 km
  • Enter next roundabout and take the 2nd exit onto McCallum Rd.                       3 km
  • Turn left onto King Rd. Seventh-Day Adventist Church is on the corner.          6 km
  • 33844 KING RD is on the right.


Equipment List:

You are required to bring:

  1. Appropriate clothing and footwear – it may be wet, and it will be dirty!
  2. Drinking water and snacks – you’ll definitely get to work!
  3. Paper, a clipboard, and pencils/pens.

It is recommended you bring:

  1. Insect repellent
  2. Camera
  3. Sunscreen and hat

We will supply soil kits.


Pre-Reading List

Before arriving at the course, it would be helpful if you were familiar with the following documents: