Skip to main content

David Wilkins

Associate Professor

  • Ph.D. | University of Utah, 1997
  • M.S.  | Texas A&M University, 1991
  • B.S.  | Texas A&M University, 1982


My research interests have included desert geomorphology (i.e., climate change and landscape processes), dendrochronology (tree-ring and climate research), and viticultural and terroir studies in the Snake River Valley.

I have two study regions where I prefer to work — the Coral Pink Sand Dunes (Corals) in southern Utah and in the Treasure Valley around Boise.  In the Corals, I’ve worked with a colleague at Weber State to investigate dune field evolution and aeolian activity during the Holocene, as well as recent geomorphic processes.  An MS thesis, published in 2015 by former MS Geology student, Janna Rozar, examines structural controls in the dune field.  A second MS Geosciences student, Kerri Spuller, investigated the timing of aeolian activity in the Corals and found evidence for dune movement and cliff retreat dating back ~ 150kya.  Copies of both these theses are available through the Boise State University Scholarworks.

My current research and teaching focuses on terroir studies of the Sunnyslope District, a local wine-grape growing area. Funded through the Idaho Department of Agriculture and the USDA, I’ve developed a 20+ station network of vineyard-situated weather and soil monitoring and recording sites.  Feel free to contact me for data access.


Current teaching is winding down.  I teach oceanography online several times a year, and a field seminar Terroir Studies course each fall.  The latter includes weekly discussions on readings followed by field visits to local vineyards and wineries.

Student Opportunities

Currently, I have no funded opportunities that would support students. However, I have a number of small scale (master’s and undergraduate) projects available to work on for those interested in local dendrochronology or terroir studies of the Snake River Valley.

Professional Memberships

Association of American Geographers (Geomorphology Specialty Group), AGU (Biogeosciences, Global Change), Geological Society of America (Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology).

Contact Information

Office: ERB 4163
Phone: 208-426-2390
Fax: 208-426-4061

Back To Top