Thursday, July 19, 2012

Another virgin forest, some water testing, and a train ride!

We started out bright and early Thursday morning with a trip to Gaudineer Knob, the second of the two "virgin forests" in West Virginia. Unlike the virgin hemlock forest we saw at Cathedral on Sunday, Gaudineer is recognized as a virgin spruce forest. The underbrush of this forest was somewhat different as well, with much greater biodiversity including the ever-loving mosses, an array of fungal species, and the home of our very own "Cheat Mountain Salamander", found only at this location in the whole world. This salamander was discovered and named by Marshall University's very own Dr. N. Bayard Green in 1938.
After a great picnic lunch, courtesy of Annette & Karen, we were off to Durbin, WV to ride the famous Durbin Rocket Train, but not before making another stop along the Greenbrier River for some more water testing (we will have thee samples of the river miles apart to compare when we are done). Take a look at our teacher blogs on the right side of this blog to see their results. At 2:30 we boarded the Durbin Rocket for a leisurely train ride along the beautiful Greenbrier River. The "ROCKET" is a Climax type train engine that was different from the Shay engine that we road yesterday at Cass. The Climax engine was built for power rather than speed and was gear-driven with a drive shaft similar to what you see on an automobile. Even now, at my age, I still get goose-bumps hearing that haunting train whistle echoing through the valley.
After another long, but productive day, we stoped for dinner at Bob Evans and then off to our rooms at the Holiday Inn Express in Lewisburg. Tomorrow we complete the last leg of our project.

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1 comment:

  1. I am unable to understand the purpose of water testing in these places. I think it is just waste of time.

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