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Choosing a Field Class

The Desert Institute offers classes for adult learners in cultural history, natural science, survival skills, desert naturalist studies, citizen science, and creative arts. All programs are taught by expert instructors who provide a personal and fun learning experience on these educational adventures.

Click on the classes below to learn more. Register soon, as class sizes are limited!

December Holiday Programs

The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You:  SmartPhone Photography (new)
December 27, 2014 - Jim Smart, Photographer, Instructor, Calif State University, San Bernardino

Desert Survival 
December 27, 2014 - Donald Scriven, Interpretive Tour Guide

Map and Compass for Families
December 28, 2014 - Theresa Walsh, Instructor, Recreation Administration

Hike Wall Street Mill – Barker Dam Loop
December 28, 2014 - Chris Metzger, M.S., Education, Historian

 

Women’s Classes

The Rough N’ Ready Girl’s Desert Camping Weekend (new)
November 22 – 23, 2014 – Rebecca Lowry, Artist, Instructor

Women’s “Get-Away” Weekend 
December 6 – 7, 2014 – Caryn Davidson, Yoga Instructor & Laurie Green, Certified Interpretive Guide

Spring 2015-The Rough N’ Ready Girl’s Desert Camping Workshop
April 18 – 19, 2015 – Rebecca Lowry, Artist, Instructor

Spring 2015-Women’s “Get Away” Weekend
April 25 – 26, 2015 - Caryn Davidson, Yoga Instructor & Laurie Green, Certified Interpretive Guide

Spring 2015-Journey to Artistry in Joshua Tree National Park
May, 2, 2015 – Valohna Wynn, Artist, Instructor

 

Creative Arts

Photographing the High Desert  (full)
December 6, 2014, Craig Fucile, Photographer, Instructor

Photographing the High Desert
December 7, 2014 - Craig Fucile, Photographer, Instructor

Spring 2015-Pine Needle Basketry
February 28 – March 1, 2015 – Kathi Klopfenstein, Artist, Instructor

Spring 2015-Fine Art Photography in Joshua Tree National Park
March 6 – 8, 2015 – Ralph Nordstrom, Photographer, Instructor

Spring 2015-Joshua Tree Through the Lens*
March 7, 2015 – Craig Fucile, Photography Instructor, UC Riverside, Extension

Spring 2015-Desert Haiku Writing in Joshua Tree National Park
March 7, 2015 – Ruth Nolan, Professor of Creative Writing and Deborah P. Kolodji, Moderatoer os the Southern California Haiku Study Group

Spring 2015-Creative SmartPhone Photography in Joshua Tree National Park
March 22, 2015 – Diana Shay Diehl, Photographer, Educator

Spring 2015-Desert Experience: Transforming Observation Through Writing
April 4 – 5, 2015 – Rebecca Lowry, Artist, Instructor

Spring 2015-Night Sky Photography
April 25 – 26, 2015 – Dennis Mammana, M.S. Astronomy, Sky Photographer, Syndicated Columnist

Spring 2015-Watercolor Painting in Joshua Tree National Park
April 26, 2015 – Anahita King, Artist, Instructor

Spring 2015-Plein Air Poetry
May 2, 2015 – Jeanette Clough and Jim Natal, Award-winning Poets

Spring 2015-Light & Color:  Oil Painting in Joshua Tree National Park
May 2 – 3, 2015 – Andrew Dickson, MFA, Artist, Instructor

Spring 2015-Keys Ranch Night Sky Photography Workshop
May 16, 2015 – Don Chambers, Nightscape Photographer, Instructor

 

Hikes with a Desert Naturalist

Spring 2015-Hike to Lost Palms Oasis
February 21, 2015 – Mark Wheeler, Naturalist

Spring 2015-Hike to the Hexahedron Mine (from Stirrup Tank)
March 15, 2015 – Mark Wheeler, Naturalist

Spring 2015-Queen Mountain: More Than Just The Summit
March 22, 2015 – Mark Wheeler, Naturalist

Spring 2015- Wildflower Wanderings
March 29, 2015 – Darrell Shade, Botanist, Desert Naturalist

 

Natural Science

Geology and Cultural History of Cottonwood Springs
December 7, 2014 – Ted Reeves, Professor of Earth Sciences, University of the Pacific

Spring 2015-Rocks and Minerals of Joshua Tree National Park*
(Geosciences x425.1, 1.5 units)
February 27, 2015- March 1, 2015- Robert Pellenbarg, Ph.D, BioChemistry, Professor

Spring 2015-Volcanoes in Joshua Tree National Park
March 7, 2015- Richard Hazlett, Ph.D., Geology, Professor, Author

Spring 2015-Flora of Joshua Tree National Park*
(Botany x420.5, 1.5 units)
March 28-30 2015-Stefanie Ritter, M.S., Zoology, Botany, Mark Wheeler, M.S., Education, Desert Naturalist

Spring 2015-Biological Soil Crusts of JTNP*
(Biology x412.28 1.0 units)
March 14-15, 2015-Nicole Pietrasiak, Ph.D, Kerry Knudsen, curator of the Lichen Herbarium, UCR and Theresa Clark, M.S., P.h.D student, University of Nevada Las Vegas

Spring 2015-Desert Tortoise Surveying & Monitoring
March 21, 2015- Paul Delany, Ph.D., Integrative Biology, Professor; Ed LaRue, M.S., Biologist; Kristin H. Berry, Ph.D., United States Geological Survey, Western Ecological Research Center

Spring 2015-Ecology of Joshua Tree National Park*
(Biology x412.4, 2 units)
April 11-12, 2015-Allan Schoenherr, Ph.D., Ecology, Professor Emeritus

Spring 2015-Tracking in Joshua Tree National Park
April 11-12, 2015- Jim Lowery, Primitive Skills Teacher, Author of The Tracker’s Field Guide

Spring 2015- Geology of the Mojave National Preserve
April 18-19, 2015- Ted Reeves, Instructor, University of Pacific

Spring 2015- Birds of Joshua Tree National Park*
(Biology x404, 1 unit)
April 17-19, 2015-Kurt Leuschner, M.S., Wildlife Ecology

Spring 2015- Ecology and Biology of Joshua Trees
April 25, 2015- Chris Clark, Environmental Writer

Spring 2015- Desert Night Sky: Planets to Galaxies
May 16, 2015- David Chappell, Ph.D., Astronomy, Professor, University of LaVerne

 

Cultural History Courses

Spring 2015- Rock Art of Southern California
February 22, 2015-Daniel McCarthy, M.S., Anthropology

Spring 2015- Intaglios along the Colorado River
March 8, 2015-Daniel McCarthy, M.S., Anthropology

Spring 2015- Hike Barker Dam-Wall Street Loop
March 14, 2015- Chris Metzger

Spring 2015- Native American Plant Uses
March 21, 2015-Daniel McCarthy, M.S., Anthropology

Spring 2015- Hike Lost Horse Loop
April 12, 2015-Chris Metzger

 

Survival Skills Courses

Spring 2015- Navigating with Map & Compass
March 27, 2015-Misha Askren, Sierra Club Outings Leader

Spring 2015- Desert Survival
March 29, 2015-Donald Scriven, Interpretive Tour Guide

Spring 2015- GPS Navigation Techniques
April 18-19, 2015-David Pylman, Joshua Tree Search and Rescue

Spring 2015- Tracking in Joshua Tree National Park
April 11-12, 2015-Jim Lowery, Primitive Skills Teacher, Author of The Tracker’s Field Guide

 

Citizen Science Programs

Spring 2015- iNaturalist: Join the Society of 21st Century Naturalists
March 21-22, 2015-Russell Di Fiori, Professor of Biology, Pasadena City College

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* ACADEMIC CREDIT
Credit is available from University of California, Riverside Extension. Optional credit courses are marked by the symbol *. The number of units are listed with each class. Credit fees are listed separately from noncredit fees.