In 2002, the Saskatchewan Geological Society published Saskatchewan's first Geological Highway Map. This was a printed product that is still available today. But in 2019, nearly 20 years later, a group of geoscientists decided it was time to move the map into the digital realm.
And that is how GeoExplore Saskatchewan was born!
With the generous financial backing of APEGS, the old Geological Highway Map will get a facelift and be digital! By transforming the map into an interactive digital format, it will be more accessible and can be used by teachers, tourists and anyone else interested in learning Saskatchewan’s geoscience diversity.
We have used ESRI’s StoryMap tool to create a website centered around an interactive map. Points on a map are linked to “story boards” that provide photos and information about the geology at those points. A future, second stage of the project might include ESRI’s mobile app (ArcGIS Explorer) allowing the map to be even more interactive.
What? GeoExplore Saskatchewan is a new website that will enable teachers, tourists and anyone to explore the intriguing geoscientific features of Saskatchewan. This website is a digital version of the printed Geological Highway Map of Saskatchewan, which was created in 2002. Photos and short explanations from about 80 geoscience points of interest are superimposed on a digital road map of the province. Additional thematic panels further explain geoscience in relatively plain language. GeoExplore Saskatchewan will be launched during Engineering and Geoscience Week, March 1 to 7, 2020.
Who? The Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Saskatchewan (APEGS) and the Saskatchewan Geological Society (SGS) are spearheading the development of this website; other collaborators, who contribute photographs, expertise, and/or some staff time, are the Saskatchewan Geological Survey, the Saskatchewan Mining Association, Tourism Saskatchewan and the Royal Saskatchewan Museum. The working committee is comprised of volunteers who are geoscience professionals from the above organizations, as well as from the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan.
Why? Saskatchewan is beautiful and GeoExplore Saskatchewan will allow people to explore the geoscientific wonders of our province. From Castle Butte and the Cypress Hills in the south to the Athabasca Sand Dunes Provincial Park in the far north; from an underground potash mine in south-central Saskatchewan to uranium exploration in the north: you will see images of extraordinary geoscience features and learn how they formed. Although many of the features are accessible along highways and secondary roads, some are in very remote places (like the Athabasca Sand Dunes); one of the ideas behind the project is to share with the people of Saskatchewan how many unexplored geoscience treasures there are in our province, in places that are not easily reached.
Where? You can get to the site by googling “GeoExplore Saskatchewan”, which will take you to the Saskatchewan Geological Society website from where you can find a link to GeoExplore. Or you can go to the Saskatchewan Mining Association website.
Direct Hyperlink: GeoExplore Saskatchewan
When? On March 3 and 4, 2020, APEGS and the SGS will demonstrate the website to over 500 Regina and area students and follow up with a hands-on learning experience.
How can I get involved? We hope people will get excited about this new way to explore Saskatchewan when they are travelling around the province or use GeoExplore Saskatchewan to discover new travel destinations. We would also be excited if people who have photographs of cool geoscience features and landscapes of Saskatchewan would be willing to share those with the SGS. Email the image to firstname.lastname@example.org along with the exact location of where the photo was taken, your consent for the photo to be posted on the website, and we will try to add them to the site.
Committee members include: chairs Ralf Maxeiner (SK Survey) and Kate MacLachlan (APEGS); Kevin Ansdell (U of S), Emily Bamforth (Royal Saskatchewan Museum), Janis Dale (U of R), Michelle Hanson (SK Survey), Kim Kreis (independent consultant), Thomas Love (SK Survey), Hossein Narimani (Graduate student), Pam Schwann (SMA), Bill Slimmon (Retired from Survey).
Follow this link to explore: GeoExplore Saskatchewan