Advanced Cloquet Field Session

NOTE: There Will be Changes to These Courses for 2020

The Advanced Forestry Field Session at the Cloquet Forestry Center is a unique opportunity for intensive hands-on experiences designed for Forest and Natural Resource Management (FNRM) majors. Information about the Session is given below and in the 2020 Handbook (.pdf). To learn more about the Center, visit Information on the faculty.  

Who Should Attend

The Department of Forest Resources’ Advanced Forest and Natural Resource Management Field Session is designed for students who wish to become directly involved in forest land management or find positions in specialized areas such as resource measurements, analysis and planning, silviculture, timber harvesting, hydrology, forest protection, or policy development. It provides unique hands-on learning experiences for undergraduate and graduate students that build upon previous coursework and knowledge.

All undergraduate Forest and Natural Resources Management majors within the Forest Ecosystem Management and Conservation (FEMC) specialization are required to attend.  FEMC specialization students admitted before Fall Semester 2020 must attend at least two of the three classes offered but are strongly encouraged to take all three classes due to the integrated nature of the courses.  Students admitted for Fall Semester 2020 or later must take all three classes. 

Graduate students who are interested in on-the-ground practices and field skills development are also encouraged to attend. They may take the course at either the 4xxx or 5xxx level, depending upon their need for credits. Additionally, graduate students focusing on how society values and makes decisions about the use, management, and protection of natural and environmental resources will also benefit from attending the session.

What Do Students Study at the Advanced Summer Forestry Field Session?

The session is an intensive experience where students learn the field techniques and applications of resource survey, silviculture, and timber harvesting and road planning. Extensive time is spent examining and applying advanced concepts in the field. While each course includes unique meeting dates, there are times when content is integrated across the three courses through joint instruction and assignments. One way in which that integration occurs is through a final project in each course where students will meet with a private landowner, determine their ownership objectives, conduct a resource survey of their parcel to provide input for writing a “stewardship plan”, and designing a harvest and road access plan. The three courses included in the session are described below. For additional information on the courses and faculty, visit the Department of Forest Resources

FNRM 4511 (2 credits) – Field Silviculture, Marcella Campione-Windmuller, Instructor
Students learn how to collect field data and prepare/write silvicultural prescriptions for achieving management objectives within the context of stand, landscape, watershed, and wildlife habitat/biodiversity issues. They conduct field exercises that consider forest entomology, pathology, tree improvement, forest soils, and nontimber forest products. As a major part of the course, students work in groups to develop a “stewardship plan” for a Cloquet-area landowner’ property. This involves identifying landowner goals and objectives, inventorying and evaluating the land, and developing short- and long-term management prescriptions. Prerequisites for undergraduate students: FNRM 3104, 3411, or instructor consent.

FNRM 4515 (1 credit) – Field Resource Survey, John Zobel, Instructor
This course builds student knowledge and skills in remote sensing and sampling and measurement methods for inventory, mapping, monitoring and analysis of forest and related natural resources. Students conduct exercises in field data collection and image interpretation, data synthesis and reporting, and learn about resource survey design options. These exercises expose students to a range of approaches and technologies for data capture, analysis and reporting. Problems considered range from describing trees and stands on the Cloquet Forestry Center to larger landscape and regional levels and issues from describing land use, resource condition, future condition, and management practices, including the impact of practices. Prerequisites for undergraduate students: FNRM 3218 and 3262 or instructor consent.

FNRM 4521 (2 credits) – Field Timber Harvesting and Road Planning, Charlie Blinn, Instructor
Students learn about the process of planning and conducting timber harvesting and forest road design considering the economic, environmental, and social influences which impact those operations. The intent is to present and discuss those issues in the context of implementing natural resource management plans. Course emphasis is on providing field-based experiences with the various aspects of timber harvesting and road planning. As site and stand conditions, landowner objectives, regulations, and other factors vary across the landscape, there are a variety of approaches used to accomplish timber harvesting and road planning. The course will address many of the different methods, presenting more detail for some than others. The course includes field trips to forests managed by public and private landowners to view on-the ground practices. Grading is based on four exercises (application of forest management guidelines, timber appraisal, road design, and timber sale design) and a final exam. Prerequisites for undergraduate students: FNRM 3411 and 3431, or instructor consent.


Registration is online. If you do not fulfill course prerequisites, you will need to get permission from the faculty member(s) in charge of the course.

For students who are currently admitted to a degree program at the University of Minnesota, registration for this session began on November 12, 2019 on a rolling basis based on student registration timeslots.

For students who are not currently enrolled in a degree program at the University of Minnesota and visiting students, registration for this session began on December 6, 2019. 

Non-degree seeking students who wish to attend the Advanced Field Session are required to follow these instructions

Non-major students may register for the Advanced Field Session if they have completed the prerequisites or if they get permission from the faculty member(s) in charge of the course.

Graduate students may register for the Advanced Field session beginning on November 12, 2019. If they haven’t completed course prerequisites, students should discuss their enrollment in a course with their advisor and the appropriate instructor(s) prior to registering for the session.

Tuition and Fees (approximate)

There are no additional tuition expenses for undergraduates who register during Spring Semester for at least 13 credits or graduate students who register during Spring Semester for at least 6, but not more than 14 credits.


Undergraduate (per semester)

According to the 13-credit policy, a degree-seeking undergraduate student must pay a flat tuition rate based on 13 credits, no matter your credit load.  For residents, the flat rate is $6,659. For nonresidents, the flat rate varies from $12,792 to $15,808, depending on when you started your degree. 

Graduate (per semester)

The general graduate tuition rate includes a 6-14 credit band for full-time registration.  Each credit above or below the plateau is assessed on a per-credit basis.  For residents, the full-time tuition for 6-14 credits is $8,790 and each credit above or below that band costs $1,465.  For non-residents, the full-time tuition for 6-14 credits is $13,602 and each credit above or below that band costs $2,267.


The following are the estimated course fees for transportation and lodging at the Cloquet Forestry Center.

FNRM 4511  $84.00
FNRM 4515 $70.00
FNRM 4521 $84.00

Note: Undergraduate students may be eligible for financial aid. Additionally, the College and/or Department of Forest Resources may be able to provide scholarship support for the session for those undergraduate students who applied through the CFANS scholarship process.

A billing statement for tuition and fees will be sent to your student account when you register for Spring Semester. These charges must be paid in full by the due date indicated on your billing statement. A late fee will be assessed if payment is not received by that time.

Student Health

The Advanced Field Session involves sustained physical activity, working alone or in teams, often on uneven terrain and in a variety of weather conditions. A medical examination prior to the session is advised. Students who are required to complete the field session, but will not be able to do so due to medical reasons, should contact Dr. Michael Kilgore (612/624-3400) within the Department of Forest Resources. Students should inform the instructor of any physical problems that might restrict their ability to perform a particular assignment.

Immunization clearance is not required for the session; however, students attending the session should have had a tetanus booster vaccination within the last five years.

Because the session begins the day after the last day of Spring Semester finals, the instructors are aware that this may put a strain on student well-being and mental health. As any individual may at times experience an impact on their well-being or mental health during a field session, it can be important to have a plan. This may involve taking some time to before the session to establish social/therapeutic/selfcare supports and strategies that can be accessed remotely, planning around consistent access to medication if applicable, and academic accommodations if needed. Field session instructors are always a resource, so please feel free to reach out to us at any time.

The Disability Resource Center (DRC) can be a resource to those who would like to explore accommodations related to a disability or health condition. Students can contact 612-626-1333 or to make an appointment if they would like to explore accommodations for the field session. If possible, students should register with the DRC in advance of the field session if they think they may need accommodations during the session.

Students who are required to complete the field session, but will not be able to do so due to medical reasons, should contact Dr. Michael Kilgore (612/624-3400) within the Department of Forest Resources. While at Cloquet, students who have paid their Student Service Fee are regular members of the University Health Service with medical services provided through Raiter Clinic (218/879-1271), 417 Skyline Blvd., Cloquet. Directions to the Raiter Clinic are noted below. Coverage is similar to that available on the Twin Cities Campus. All injuries must be reported immediately to Dr. Andy David (Director, 218-244-6794) or Stephanie Oberg (Facility Coordinator, 218-726-6401) at the Cloquet Forestry Center and the course Instructor.

Directions from the Cloquet Forestry Center to Raiter Clinic: 

Head northeast on University Road toward Cartwright Rd for 0.6 miles
Continue onto Brevator Road for 0.6 miles
Turn right onto Big Lake Road for 2.4 miles
Turn left onto MN-33 N for 1.4 miles
Turn right onto Skyline Blvd. and proceed for 0.1 miles
Make a U-turn. Destination is on the right in 0.1 miles

Raiter Clinic's hours are 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday by appointment. After hours medical services are available at the Community Memorial Hospital emergency room (218/879-4641), 512 Skyline Blvd., Cloquet. Directions to the Community Memorial Hospital are noted below.

Directions from the Cloquet Forestry Center to Community Memorial Hospital Emergency Room: cfcmemorial
Head northeast on University Rd toward Cartwright Rd for 0.6 miles
Continue onto Brevator Road for 0.6 miles
Turn right onto Big Lake Road for 2.4 miles
Turn left onto MN-33 N for 1.4 miles
Turn right onto Skyline Blvd. Destination is on the right in 0.2 miles

All medical bills must be submitted to the student's hospitalization insurance carrier first. After their insurance carrier determines the amount they will pay, the student should send the emergency medical service bill and the insurance company's explanation of benefits worksheet (which indicates how much the insurance company paid) to: Boynton Health Service, 410 Church St. S.E., Minneapolis, MN 55455, Attention: Patient Accounting Supervisor.

The Cloquet Forestry Center does not stock any medications. If you are susceptible to allergic reactions to pollen, insect bites, or stings, etc. bring your own medication to the session. Northern Minnesota is an area where you should be concerned about tick borne diseases. Additional information about Lyme disease is presented below on Pages 12 – 15 and by linking to:,, and


Students must live on the Center because it greatly simplifies schedules and group assignments and it provides a better learning experience. The Center will apply housing regulations defined within the University’s Community Behavioral Standards ( By staying in Center housing, you are agreeing to abide by those policies. Housing is available on the Center in Cabins 45 (students who begin in the second week) and 46 (students who begin in the first week) in single person hotel style rooms. Camping facilities are not available. Cabins 45 and 46 have wireless internet access, as does the Administration Building.

Pillows and mattresses are provided. However, pillow cases, linen for a twin bed, towels, and blankets must be furnished by students. The occupants of each room are expected to keep their room clean (cleaning supplies will be available). The quarters are clean when students arrive and must be clean when they leave. Students are responsible for room clean up prior to their departure. Pets are not allowed in the dorm rooms under any circumstances.

Please respect the buildings. Do not deface any walls by carving or writing. Do not put nails or tacks in the walls. Abnormal breakage or damage to dormitories or dorm rooms will be assessed against the individuals involved. Do not wear hobnail or caulk boots in buildings. Do not move any beds or furniture from one area to another. Smoking is prohibited in all buildings.


Students are responsible for providing their own meals. Complete cooking facilities (e.g., two full-size refrigerators, a range with an oven, microwave, coffeemaker, dishes, pots and pans, silverware) are available in Cabin 46. Cooking is not permitted in the dorm rooms. You may bring a mini-refrigerator for your room.


The Advanced Summer Field Session is held at the University of Minnesota Cloquet Forestry Center in northern Minnesota. Information about the center can be found at For directions see the map below.

Map of Cloquet Forestry Center

Arrival and Departure

The Session will begin at the Center on Thursday, May 14 at 8:00 a.m. in the Administration Building with class and lodging check-in, equipment sign-out, briefing, and an introductory tour of the forest focused on measurement concepts. This tour is considered a part of the first course, FNRM 4515. Park your car in the large parking area next to Cabin 46. If you are unable to report to Cloquet by 8 AM on May 14, please contact John Zobel ( beforehand.

Please be advised that your post-session schedule for employment or other activities should take into account the end date for whatever course(s) you are registered to take. Requests for early releases to accommodate personal plans will not be approved. Dorm rooms will be inspected at the end of the session or after your last course to make sure they are clean.

Course Schedule

Each class will participate in a) an organizational meeting in March to introduce the overall structure of the Advanced Field Session, b) a field trip in University vans to Cloquet and Grand Rapids on March 27 – 28 which will depart at approximately 1 PM on March 27 and return to campus by 6 PM on March 28, c) a debriefing meeting in April to discuss the March field trip, and d) specific dates for each course, as noted below. Dates for the pre-March field trip and April post-field trip discussion will be announced. Note that all students need to participate on May 27 for group project presentations. 

Course Dates*
FNRM 4515 (Field Resource Survey) March 27-28, May 14 – 16 and May 27
FNRM 4511 (Field Silviculture) March 27-28, May 17-20, May 22, May 27
FNRM 4521 (Field Timber Harvesting and Road Planning) March 27-28, May 21, May 23-27
*There will be two additional meeting dates, to be determined. One will occur before March 27 to discuss the March 27-28 field trip and organization of the classes in May. The second meeting date will occur in April to discuss the March field trip.

During May, approximate class times are from 8 AM to 12 PM and 12:45 PM to 4:30 PM everyday.  Some evening work will also be scheduled.  Class will meet on Monday, May 25 (Memorial Day).  Individual instructors may make adjustments in the schedule as necessary for their specific courses.


Bring your course notes for all prerequisite classes. The following are required supplies that must be provided by students. The supplies are not available at the Cloquet Forestry Center. Purchase them before you leave the Twin Cities. Some items are available at the Books Underground Bookstore on the St. Paul Campus. For the most part, the expensive items will also be used in other courses and/or in your professional career.

  • Hand compass
  • Tatum holder or clipboard to hold 8-1/2 x 11-inch paper
  • Paper for reports and a packet of graph paper
  • Pencils, pens, colored pencils, etc. for note taking and report writing
  • Pocket calculator
  • Ruler marked in inches and tenths
  • Flash drive

Personal needs:

  • Pillow cases, linen for a twin bed, towels and blankets must be furnished by students; pillows and mattresses are provided.
  • Field clothes adequate for protection against cold, rain and insects, including ticks. A waterproof hat, jacket, pants, and waterproof boots are an absolute necessity because field work is carried out regardless of the weather.
  • Field clothes treated with permethrin, either by the manufacturer or aftermarket, are recommended to reduce exposure to disease-carrying insects such as ticks and mosquitoes. Permethrin treated field pants, calf-high socks, and shirts can be more effective than DEET-based insect repellent for tick protection. Follow the directions on the container when applying insect repellant containing DEET or permethrin.
  • Footwear appropriate for walking on uneven ground, through dense brush, and when the soil and vegetation are wet and soggy.
  • Any other clothing deemed necessary for an extended field course.
  • Toiletries.
  • Sun protection.
  • Any medications including kits for insect stings, bee stings, etc.
  • Glasses or other eye protection of working in the woods

Each student will be issued equipment when they check-in for use in one or more courses. Each student is responsible for the care of the equipment they are issued. Tapes, increment borers, and other tools or equipment needing protection from rust should be kept oiled. Losses or unwarranted damage will be paid for by the responsible student or crew. Hard hats will be issued and must be worn when you are visiting an active timber sale. Eye and ear protection are available, but if you have your own, bring it with you. Specific items that will be checked out to students at check-in and collected before checkout are:

Equipment issued to all students

  • 100 ft. tape
  • Diameter tape
  • Suunto clinometer
  • Increment borer
  • Tree and Log Scale Stick with angle gauge (hinge attachment)
  • Prism 20 BAF
  • Hard hat
  • Safety Glasses and ear protection (optional)

Equipment that may be issued for short periods

  • Laser rangefinder
  • For students with smartphones or tablet devices, the Avenza PDF maps application, or some other geoPDF map app, can add to a student’s field experience. Cloquet Forestry Center staff can provide appropriate geoPDF maps for student use while working at the Forestry Center and other experimental forest properties.

Course-related Transportation

University vans will be available for course-related activities.  Students must sign and return a Release of Liability form before they will be allowed to participate in any course-related field trips.


Emergency Contact Information
Student must complete and return the Emergency Contact Information form to Charlie Blinn by March 20.

Individual dorm rooms do not have phones. The Cloquet Forestry Center office number is 218-726-6400. In addition, several courtesy telephones are located throughout the Center. One is located in the vestibule as you enter the Classroom Administration Building (218-726-6489). A phone is also located in the kitchens units of cabin #45 (218-726-6492) and cabin #46 (218-726-6493).

A 24-station computer lab is available to students for class assignments, e-mail, and internet access via a fiber optic line.

Mail can be sent to the Cloquet Forestry Center using the following address. Mail arrives in the mid- to late afternoon, Monday-Friday.

Cloquet Forestry Center
175 University Road
Cloquet, MN 55720-9594

Outgoing mail can be placed in the mailbox located on the road between the Administration Building (#44) and the Forest Management Building (#2). It must be placed in the box by 11:30 a.m. each day.

A washer and dryer are available in the basement of Cabin #36. Additionally, two laundromats are located in the City of Cloquet.

Alcoholic Beverages
As a University of Minnesota campus, CFC adheres to UMN policy regarding alcohol and drug use. In short, students or others housed on or visiting a UMN campus must follow state law, which prohibits consumption, purchase, or possession of alcohol by individuals younger than 21.

The Cloquet Forestry Center is a smoke and tobacco-free campus.

Room check for supplies
A member of the Center staff will enter student rooms weekly sometime between 10AM - noon on Mondays to check for supply needs, damage, etc.

Storage of miscellaneous items
Do not store items in your room which can block the way in an emergency situation, destroy the interior of a building, or which can cause fire. Specific items which have been a concern in the past include bicycles, car batteries, motorcycles, and canoe paddles. Please store these items outside. Bring a lock to secure them, if necessary.

Pets are not permitted—do not bring them! This policy is rigidly enforced.

As per University Board of Regents policy on the possession and carrying of weapons, (, no person, whether a student, employee, or visitor, shall possess or carry a weapon while on University property unless they are a licensed peace officer, security guard, other law enforcement agent or military personnel when acting in the course of their official duties and when authorized to carry weapons; they are participating in military training when acting in the course of their official duties or performing duly assigned tasks involving weapons; acting under University Presidential approval; or for the purposes of lawful storage of a firearm inside a personal motor vehicle.

Course instructors may take photos of the class at various times for a number of reasons in support of the Department of Forest Resources’ educational, promotional and publicity efforts. Students are requested to sign and return a Photo Release Form to allow the photographs to be used in a publication, print ad, direct mail piece, electronic media (e.g., video, CD-ROM, Internet/WWW), or other form of promotion.

Students taking tree measurements