SCIENCE ROCKS: Dig Into UWEC Prof’s Journey Through the Alaskan Wild

UWEC geology professor publishes book about his research, adventures, and hopes to tell the story of disconnect

Rebecca Mennecke

Kent Syverson, a professor of geology at UWEC, conducted research in Alaska during the '80s. He said he had always wanted to go to Alaska.
Kent Syverson, a UW-Eau Claire professor of geology, conducted research in Alaska during the 1980s. He said he had always wanted to go to Alaska. (Submitted photos)

In glacial geologist Kent Syverson’s field notebook, you might find weather information, times to be at the inlet, and tons of notes from his research in Alaska in the 1980s.

Syverson, a UWEC geology professor, compiled such notes, 35mm slide photographs, and old journal entries to write his new book Adventures in Glacier Bay: A Glacial Geologist’s True Stories of Life in the Alaskan Wilderness, which is available at The Local Store.

Syverson studied the Burroughs Glacier, where an area of ice has wasted away over the last hundred years.

“I had always wanted to go to Alaska,” Syverson said. “Every geologist wants to make it to Alaska in one way or another.”

He documented his experience so his children and friends see his adventurous side, as well as to encourage people to be grateful for what they have.

“It’s more than just adventures and pretty pictures,” Syverson said. “I’m trying to tell a story of disconnect.”