Cowboy Zach and Ninja Turtle Jessica take opening measurements.
Cowboy Zach and Ninja Turtle Jessica take opening measurements.

We celebrated Halloween in style this week at Whispering Woods!  Students were bribed with extra credit if they came in costume.

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Angry Bird Sam and Cowboy Zach excavated EU3.

On a more serious note, we made a significant find this week: we found one of the old Phase I shovel tests!  This is a great result because it means that our site plan is in the right place.  Knowing where we are in relationship to the Phase I maps means that we are targeting the right areas.  How did we know it was an old shovel test?  The answer is stratigraphy.  Soil is deposited in layers.  At our site, based on our shovel tests, normal stratigraphy is a brown sandy loam, followed by a redder sandy clay around .6ft below the surface, followed still by a redder thick clay about 1.8ft below the surface.  Once we hit the clay, we normally stop, usually around 2ft below surface.  Anything other than this sequence could be a sign of disturbance.  The STP in question showed a mix of these three layers down to the red clay.  Plus it was on a spot where an old STP was supposed to be.  Could we be wrong?  Well, that’s always a possibility.  What we may do is lay in an excavation unit over the spot.  If it is an old STP, we should see a circular area of this moddled soil.

Another piece of news is that the soy field has been plowed; hurrah!  Also, vegetation is beginning to die back in the woods so we were able to trek down the gorge to the creek for the first time since June.  The students really enjoyed the solitude of the Woods.

Back to Halloween and all things scary – we have over 80 people coming to Open Day!  This is great but all of are a little nervous.  There are cars to park and little children to herd.  Plus, will the public enjoy themselves or find the event boring?  We’ll just have to wait to find out!