Starting today, we'll spend the next four class meetings learning about skeleton plotting, which is one of the most elegant tools available for dating tree ring records. Our main job will be to use skeleton plotting to date a set of tree-ring specimens from Northern Arizona. These samples were collected by scientists at the University of Arizona's Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, and were taken from trees with very clear ring patterns (which should help us date them correctly).
Before we start working with real wood, we'll use a simple online tool to help get us familiarized with the method of skeleton plotting. Each of us will spend today's class working through a series of simulated tree-ring sequences using an application produced by Dr. Paul Sheppard at the University of Arizona.
Once you're comfortable with the basics of dating simulated tree-ring series, we'll move on to the real thing.