Monday, November 25, 2013

Between a Rock and Hard Place

This blog isn't about birds.  Well, not entirely.  Recently the Peabody Museum (Link here) ran a geology hike though New Haven's East Rock Park (Link here) lead by Copeland McClintock, one of their Geologists.  The idea of understanding more of the geology and natural history appeals to me.  While I didn't expect to become an expert after just one walk, I thought that any information would benefit my understanding of the natural world.

Thoughts of a simple passive walk were quickly disspelled by the fact that when I first arrived, articles, clipboards, maps, and colored pencils were shoved into hands.  We were also put to work learning the three different kinds of rocks (sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic) and then we were quizzed with samples.  McClintock then took us on a whirlwind history tour of the planet and then East Rock.  We were introduced into the Cooling Columns of Basalt and the New Haven Formation of Arkose.  The Triassic New Haven Arkose and the Jurassic Basalt helped us understand how rocks interact and showcase our planet's history.

We also learned to look at and use the tools of a geologist.  Learning how to look at rocks, measure angles of rock intrusions, and how to identify the evidence of glacial activity.  While I am not going to even pretend to think that I could do this on my own, I did enjoy learning how to see the world how a geologist see it.  As a birder, I most often use that lens to see the natural world.  Geologists look at East Rock and see the movement of rock, intrusions of igneous rock, and the evidence of glacial activity.  I enjoyed the Peabody's walk and can't wait to get out and see more of the natural world!

Told you there would be some birds on this one

Cooling Columns of Basalt at East Rock Park

A Geology Station in College Woods

A Sample of the New Haven Formation, mainly Arkose

More Arkose!

Above, a demonstration of a Sill Intrusion

This is an example of a Dyke Intrusion

These are pebbles that have been sheared into the Basalt by a Glacier

Lunar Scars of left by a Glacier and a Pebble

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