Friday, 29 June 2007
Everybody at work is all geared up for the weekend after yesterday's party. Ryan and I were going to fire off another one of our Mentos experiments to get some additional data. When we video taped the experiment from yesterday, the tops of the spray from the soda was cut off, which is what we needed to figure out the most efficient hole size. So we ran her again. Once we narrowed it down to two optimal sizes we loaded up the carts for a test run. And they were off! They did quite well until a wheel on each cart disconnected and stopped them cold. I was a little disgruntled since I had put lock washers on those wheels to lock them up tight. Apparently to no avail. Now we were faced with the possibility of having to find another dynamics cart. Not cool we had put so much time into getting this part of the project ready for the SOCK. Back to the drawing board.
By the end of the work day I think I managed to locate another good dynamics cart, however, we wouldn't be able to test it until next Thursday because of the 4th of July holiday. A little frustrating but at least it was the weekend. Time to get ready for the Shenandoah National Park hike I had been planning for a few weeks.
Saturday, 30 June 2007
Indeed I had almost forgotten the unique beauty that the countryside can have. After having the fun and adventure of exploring the gorgeous monuments and treasures that Washington D.C. has to offer it was a change of pace to see the lush green hills and valleys of Virginia. But it was a welcome change.
Earlier this morning Katie and her room mate, Chris, came to G.W. to pick up myself, Jesus, Enrique, and Andrea for some hiking at Shenandoah National Park. I had been waiting for this trip for a while since I had heard how close the mountains were. Plus I knew some of the Civil War history that was in these hills. So I looked forward to seeing the land from a nice mountain peak. I had been digging around online and asking around at work as to what were the best trails hit in the park.
We arrived at the park at 10:00 at the Swift Run Gap, a little further south than I had originally anticipated. But we found a good trail to hit just a little ways in. We checked out the South River Falls trail. It was a really good hike. For one the deer in this park seemed really non apprehensive of park visitors. We walked upon two in our first few minutes of the hike. Then we came upon a small creek and of course being science majors curious about nature, we couldn't just settle for looking at it from the path. So we separated from the well traveled path to explore the unknown of the river and all its cool rock formations. I hadn't done fun exploring like that for a while now. Indeed it feels good to do fun stuff like this again.
Once we had checked out the river we made it back to the trail and continued on to the falls. What a site that was, seeing an 86 waterfall with a small pool at the bottom. We had a few snacks while admiring the view. Then we pressed on and that's when we realized that we had been going all down hill to see this and now we had to hike a rather steep grade to get back to our cars.
Back at the trail head we broke out the charcoal and fired up one of the grills at the campsites. Hot dogs never tasted so good after an endeavor like that. It was nice to just kick back and relax. For some reason I particularly liked the smell of charcoal. Guess it's the camping aspect of it.
After lunch we had a quick business meeting on where to go next. We decided that we should either find some more falls or hit the tallest thing in the park. Yup we voted on hitting the tallest point in the park, Hawksbill Mountain at 4,050 ft. And I tell you that was another really awesome hike, although this one was tougher on the ascent, but we made her and the view was breathtaking. We climbed around along the summit for a ways checking out the views from the various angles. We took some really nice photos. But before we knew it, it was time to go. I was pretty exhausted by the time we got back to the vehicles, but it had been indeed a really spectacular day.
Sunday, 1 July 2007
Laundry day and mandatory R&R. Well alright maybe not mandatory but indeed after yesterday's endeavors I have to kick back a little bit. Good day to get laundry done and my journal. But I have heard that there are plans to check out the National Cathedral and the Smithsonian Ethnic Fest which is on the Mall for the next few days. It sounds to be pretty interesting. I'm looking forward to checking it out although I plan on not going too fast today. I'll have to write more on this in my next journal entries.