Field Explorations


We firmly believe the best way to learn about the desert is to experience it. The Desert Laboratory provides occasional opportunities to travel to some of the region’s most spectacular sites with a group of experts in a unique experience that cannot be replicated. We are also working to develop extended field experiences and Field Research Camps that will offer unparalleled experiential learning opportunities.


Field Trips

From one to 10 days, our field trips are exploratory and focus on sharing a region, often with a tie to the Desert Laboratory research and when possible with local and Indigenous partners as trip leaders. Examples include Pinacate Biosphere Reserve, Mexico (Fall 2018); Ancient Agave Roasting Pits of Tumamoc (most years in the Spring); our sister archaeological site Trincheras, Sonora, Mexico (Spring 2020). Fees for trips vary according to duration and details such as transportation.

Field Research Camps

A program in development, Field Research Camps will be experiential learning opportunities directly investigating through action the priority issues facing the future of life in arid environments. Field camp topics will be selected in concert with active research of the Desert Laboratory.

The field camps will be five-day immersive learning experiences that engage paying members of the public in community science. The field camp will be undertaken in a thematically relevant remote location that underscores and directly ties people to the elements being investigated. Participants will engage in real-world problem-solving guided in scientific investigation by a team of experts from the working group. Participants will emerge from the field camp having deeply explored a core ecological and/or cultural challenge and will present their findings to the group and will be conferred a Tumamoc Field Research Camp commendation. Participation in Field Research Camps will be by application. 

The Desert Lab will reserve a portion of the revenue and seek matching funding from donors so that every third year we will host a Field Research Camp for Indigenous researchers in their communities, including the Comcaac, Tohono O’odham, and Yoeme.