Summer Soil ID Course

The 2017 Summer Soil ID Course Crew

Every summer the PRSSS hosts a soil identification course that is suitable for both the soil professional and soil-curious alike. Each year the course is held in a different region of BC where course participants can benefit from the wealth of knowledge shared by local soil experts as they explore the diverse array of soil types throughout the province.

The course runs for three days, beginning with an introduction to soil classification and field descriptions, as well as proper hand-texturing methods and jar testing. The remaining time is spent in the field where participants gain hands-on experience digging soil pits, interpreting what they discover, and integrating what they observe from the surrounding environment as soil formation factors and soil processes are revealed.

From students to professional foresters and surficial geologists, the varied backgrounds of participants create a unique group dynamic that fosters great conversations, debates, and a lot of fun!

Click on the links below for more details.

Upcoming Summer Soil Course

The course will take place in and around Williams Lake and the Chilcotin Region of B.C
 August 10-12, 2021 (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday)
“Grasslands to Inland Rainforests”
– Assessing Texture
– Digging a soil pit
– Identifying and describing soil horizons
Estimated Costs:
Students: $100
Professionals: $200
Must be a member to sign up for the course

Our instructors and executive team have provided some supplementary resources that will enhance your learning during the soil ID course. These are by no means required, but will be pertinent.

Core reading:

Soils of the Horsefly area (introductory material and the following soil associations: Keno Lake, Ptarmigan, Spanish Lake, Spakwaniko, Saxton, McGreggor, Heger)

Soils of the Taseko Lakes Area (introductory material and the following soil associations: Chilcotin, Dog Creek)

Soils of the Williams Lake and Alexis Creek Area (introductory material and the following soil associations: Chimney, Williams Lake)

Steen and Coupe, 1997. A field guide to site identification in the Cariboo forest region. LMH 39. [relevant material: Ch 4, Ch 5 (ICH, IDF, BG & SBS), Ch 6 (BGxh3, BGxw2, SBSmh, IDFdk3, IDFxm, ICHwk2)]

Province of British Columbia, 2015. Field Manual for Describing Terrestrial Ecosystems, 2nd Edition. LMH 25 (relevant material, Ch1, Ch2, Ch9).

Additional reading:

Tipper, 1971. Glacial geomorphology and Pleistocene history of central British Columbia. Geological Survey of Canada, Bulletin 196.

Marsh et al. 2006. Composition and function of biological soil crust communities along topographic gradients in grasslands of central interior British Columbia and southwestern Yukon.

Harvey et al. 2017. Mixed-severity fire history at a forest-grassland ecotone in west central British Columbia, Canada.

Panteleyev et al. 1996. Geology and mineral deposits of the Quesnel River – Horsefly map area, central Quesnel trough, British Columbia.

Steele et al. 2007. Cariboo-Chilcotin ecosystem restoration plan: grassland benchmark.

Canadian Soil Classification System (Third Edition)

Past Summer Soil Courses