Friday, January 22, 2010

Long week of snow and rain is almost over!

This whole week it has been either snowing or raining.  We didn't get much snow accumulation and today most of it is gone because of last night's rain and warmer temperatures.  I was afraid the rain was going to freeze overnight but it looks like I was wrong.  I was headed home from work, thinking I'd go to the recycle center and the thrift store, but that didn't sound like fun in the rain so I went to the Diner instead.

I am going to help run field trips at Canyonlands National Park next week.  Yesterday was the training, and the topic of these field trips is Changes in Matter--like physical and chemical changes.  There is a 1/2 mile hike as part of the field trip, a station about the ozone layer (because Canyonlands has an air quality station) and a station about erosion and weathering.  The idea is to break up a rock, which is physical weathering, then pour acid on it (vinegar, coke, or lemon juice), which is chemical weathering.   I'm thinking I'd like to help with the hike to Mesa Arch, where we point out physical and chemical matter changes along the way.  Should be fun!

Mesa Arch is one of my favorite places in Canyonlands. It's a really short, easy hike, but you end up at an arch--looking through the arch into the canyon is one of the coolest views around.  You look at three towers; Airport Tower, Monster Tower and Washerwoman Arch--a free-standing tower with an arch that looks like a woman standing at a tub doing laundry.  It's one of the first things I learned about this place, there are always surprises!  Edward Abbey said we shouldn't give human names to these formations, we should just let them be as they are, but in the case of Washerwoman Arch, I think it totally fits!
Sunrise at Mesa Arch.

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