February 9, 2010 — Vol. 26 No. 6
Idaho State University geosciences professor Paul Link and his wife Katie were recognized for donating the $200,000 ISU Lost River Field Station to the Geosciences Department in a ceremony on Wednesday.
"Having the opportunity to provide a field based research and teaching facility enhances ISU's recognition as a leader in geosciences," said ISU President Arthur Vailas.
The Links donated nearly eight acres of land and buildings located on the banks of the Big Lost River in the shadow of Borah Peak, Idaho’s tallest mountain, about 20 miles north of Mackay. It has some of the most stunning views in Idaho, with the Big Lost River Range to the north and the Pioneer Mountains to the south.
"It seemed like now was the time to take that next step and lock in the goal we've had for 29 years," Link said.
When Link came to ISU in 1980, Tom Ore, director of the field geology course, told him that the geology department needed its own field camp facility. In 1985, David Rodgers, current ISU geosciences chair, took over the field course, moved it to central Idaho in 1990, and operated the field camp from several different ranches for the next 10 years.
In 1995, Paul and Katie Link purchased 10 acres on the Big Lost River north of Mackay, with the idea that this might be the ideal spot for a field camp. In 2001 at a department retreat, Scott Hughes, former chair of the geosciences department and current interim dean of the ISU College of Arts and Sciences, and Link decided to build a facility. It was constructed in 2002, directed by Allan Priddy, a local contractor and adjunct instructor at ISU. The facility has been upgraded over the years, primarily by geology students and faculty.
"Completion of the project depended on Allan, his helpers, and the volunteer efforts of many students, faculty and their family members," Hughes said.