Saturday, June 1, 2013

Scenes from School: Salt Lake City Edition

After finishing a ten-day intensity block and being all caught up on my university book learning I had no more excuses for not heading out to the Great Salt Lake. Today made a fine day to be in the second saltiest body of water in the world. The brine flies were away, and one could go bob bob bobbing away in the brackish waters outside the once world famous Saltair Palace. On the paddleboard, you could look down and see reddish-brown plumes of brine shrimp hatching.

Even better, the last surviving building of the Coney Island of the West (hint, it is the only one not built of wood) was open, so I got to look around and see the old photos from a hundred years ago. Back then that the place was alive in regal opulence. It is so surprising to find places that time forgot in America, especially in the western United States. Everything feels like it was built in the last fifty years here. And, really, you could not believe the scene that one stood on these salty flats - boardwalks, a special passenger train just for the resort, the world's biggest rollercoaster - all here. Today you can find plenty of solitude at Saltair.

Another view from the lake. The water's there, I promise. It's just that the flatness of the geography plays tricks on the eyes. The lake resides as the bottom of ancient bottom to Lake Bonneville that once covered much on the Intermountain West. Today the waterline ebbs and flows with the snowmelt and each passing thunderstorm.

So far this summer  plenty of thunderstorms have made their way through Utah, though I know the brutally hot summer afternoons are coming. This makes watching the last rays of the day slip away with a storm brewing above that much better.

And the fifth graders back at Osborn Elementary? I think they are doing alright. The young scientists made it onto the big screen again, this time to discover and talk about the vitality of the Wenatchee River that rushes by.

Nature Education at Barn Beach with Mr Peck's 5th Grade Class from Icicle TV on Vimeo.

Until next time. -T.

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