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Why is Water Important?


Water is a very important part of our ecosystem. In fact, without water, an ecosystem could not exist. Water is all around us, providing homes for sea animals and plants. We also drink it, bathe in it and use it for other everyday activities Our river systems connect together to make watersheds. All the tiny streams feed large rivers, so they ca  feed lakes and/or oceans. So the contamination of the smallest stream, can affect everything downstream. We often get our drinking water from the lakes and rivers in our area, so it Is important to keep the water clean, because cleaner water means a healthier food chain. If the fish we eat have lived in dirty water, they’ll have bacteria and could make us ill. So remember, keep the water in your area clean. That means no littering or dumping household chemicals on the ground or in a storm drain. Also, don’t pour chemicals     down the sink or flush them down the toilet. Another thing to remember, is that it is so important to conserve water! It’s pretty easy if you just do a few simple things like checking for leaky faucets or turning the water off while brushing your teeth. Don’t forget that every little thing you do for the environment counts! 

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Welcome to our updated website!

Hello there! To start off, welcome to the new and improved River Wranglers website! It has been reworked from top to bottom to make it easier to navigate and worth visiting. Of the biggest changes, we have moved the blog here to the main site, added a gallery, and will be adding a list of events as time goes on.

 Our new homepage. It's a huge improvement over our previous one.

Our new homepage. It's a huge improvement over our previous one.

I'm Chance, i've been volunteering with River Wranglers helping out in the development of the website among other things. It's a fantastic feeling being able to help out doing something I enjoy. I have been the one making small changes, such as making the homepage header see-through, making links turn blue when you mouse over them, and setting up some of the pages. I hope to continue working on the website, writing for the blog, and working on other projects.

If you have any feedback or encounter any issues on the website, please contact us using the information here. Look forward to more blog posts soon from me and others soon.

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Making It Through the Summer

My summer is doing good. I had to take a week off of work because I broke my collar bone and I was not able to move it. I broke my collar bone on my week off from work on a Sunday I was outside hanging out with some friends and I was riding a rip stick and I was going too fast down this hill in Stagecoach I was going about 10 or 15 mph down that hill and I hit a small rock in the road and flew forward and landed on my right shoulder first. It only takes 8 pounds to brake a collar bone, and I did it! When I got up I was kind of smiling but I did not feel the bone break I knew I broke it by the way it felt but it did not really hurt until I was on the way to the hospital.

I’ve been working with Linda over the summer and it’s been going good. At first I

did not really want to work at all and I wanted to find every way out of it but I did not because that was not the right thing to do. So I showed up to work every day ready to go do something new. I do it anyways, working my hardest every day I have to work. Going to the office and making copies was fun, something I usually don’t like to do but did it with no problems. I think I’m a lazy kid but I do my work anyways with no problems. I don’t mind working but not so much over the summer when I could be with friends and making memories. I decided to work over this summer so I can get used to getting up early, be ready to work, and not be late.

   I’ve had to cut out name tags. That was easy. I was hoping I had to do that all day because sometimes I show up for work and I don’t want to work. I had to go on a job shadow with Sam Turner and it was fun because I got to learn about the different kinds of animals living around the lake and what they do to help the environment. I go on these fieldtrips with the Comstock Workers every Wednesday to different colleges, to learn about a place, or to go have fun. In two day I get to go to a rope cores. Today I got to do something I was really good at. I sandpapered folding chairs and I had to paint them different colors. I did a good job! I mixed some of the colors together and it looks funny but cool.

Over this summer I’m learning I am able to do anything if I put my mind to it. I will not give up on myself. I want to have fun but be safe doing it. I might go to college or get small jobs and go travel the world. I want to see family and meet new people to hang out with and make new friends around the world.

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The Carson River Festival and Clean Up

The Carson River Festival in Dayton was really fun.  When we first got there we unloaded tables, chairs and set up canopies.  The kids started showing up and setting up their tables.  I got to teach about the water cycle with an activity called The Incredible Journey.  People get to make a bracelet.  You start with a sun bead.  The sun heats water on earth causing evaporation and then people travel to different stations:  clouds, soil, oceana, rivers, plants, lakes, groundwater, animals, and glaciers.  The kids liked making the bracelets and had fun.  I also helped other people at their booths if they needed it. We packed everything up, took down tables, chairs and canopies.  We packed it all in the trailer and it is still there!

I've been working very hard every day when I go to work.  I don't complain and I do my best to get everything done on time before my hours are up.   We've been cleaning everything and I'm having fun working with Linda.  This summer is a new experience for me and I'm just trying every day and having fun working outside and interacting with new people and making new friends at events.  Sometimes I work a 5-7 hour day and that keeps me really busy.

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Settling In

Monday, June 17.  I went to the Carson Water Subconservancy and met more people with River Wranglers.  I worked very hard that day but I was having fun while I was working.  I had to make name tags and print, cut and fold thank you cards.  It is fun helping River Wranglers because everybody is really nice and respectful.  I get to teach others about River Wranglers and it should be really fun.  Every day I get to do something new and its kinda fun , it keeps me busy busy but interested for the day.  I think I'm going to like doing this over the summer.

Thursday, June 20.  Today I had to finish getting everything ready for River Wranglers' Carson River Festival in Dayton on Saturday.  I cleaned up the trailer and made it all organized so everyone will find it easy for fing all the things they need.  I cleaned up the Enviroscape model and got out the supplies for the water cycle activity, the Incredible Journey.  I recruited my friend, Dusty, to help teach adults and kids something new.  And by teaching everyone else about the water cycle, I'll be learning new things as well.

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Meet Ryan a Summertime Blogger.....Comstock Worker and River Wranglers Intern

I had fun on my first day of work with River Wranglers. I got to meet new people and had new experiences. I like to try new things even if I don’t know how to do it. I’m easy-going and I like to explore the world, go hiking, fishing and have fun with nature.

I enjoy being helpful in any way and I’ll push myself in life and have fun with whatever I’m doing.

I have challenges with spelling and I’m not very good at writing. I’m easy to work with and sometimes if I don’t understand something when I’m working I try to do it by myself

because I get kind of scared to ask for help if I don’t understand how to do something. I’m a very hard worker and I’m getting better at asking questions when I need help. I’m going to learn new skills for life and have fun this summer.

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Charlie's Angels Alive and Well in Silver Springs

  The appreciation picnic for the teen volunteers at Lahontan State Recreation Area was great fun thanks to fantastic board members willing to work hard, good food, bright sun and water!  The teens canoed, ate, and defended themselves in a good water fight!  I would say the day was perfect in every way...but for the wind.  At the end of the day the wind caught our attention and demanded that we work with the canopies, chairs blowing over and all our "stuff" blowing about.  It was a brief attack but managed to convince us that the "windy city" has met it's match throughout Nevada!

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Renewing Energy and Exploring the Results

One of the best things about being able to see and work with someone that is using or working with renewable resources is that you can explore the logistics and see how it will work for you as well as get some tips that will help you get yours working. One of the surprises that I got on this field trip was that there are other ways of having solar power without batteries.  You can put the power into the grid and get discounts on your power bill and tax credits. One of the things I wanted to know is if it is possible for any person to do this, not just people that have money. The things that I found out through this experience are that there are ways to get through and to accomplish your goals with very little expense on the part of the owner. This will definitely help me in my exploration of renewable energy and help me get my own setup of renewable energy.

Brennan, Silver Stage High School

visited Comstock Seeds in Gardnerville, Nevada

owner, Ed Kleiner

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Reptiles are Heading to Old Town Dayton

.

 They're on their way to the Carson River Festival!!  The reptile exhibit is always popular and kids; young and old, love to handle the snakes.  Thanks to Matt Duncan with a Reno pet store, families get to check out a variety of native and exotic reptiles.  Find out what is involved to get a pet reptile....learn about the native reptiles and what happens when exotics are released in the wild by a "worn out" pet owner.  Bad stuff for sure!  Mark your calendar for Sat. and Sun., June 1 and 2 in Old Town Dayton.  The Festival begins at 9am and ends at 3 pm.

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Carson River Festival is Coming to Old Town Dayton!

You won't want to miss it!  One of the most exciting events of the year, the

Carson River Festival,

is scheduled on Saturday and Sunday, June 2 and 3, 2012 in Old Town Dayton from 9-3 pm.   We have hands-on activities planned and every day, students from Silver Stage and Dayton High Schools are out in the community, learning about the watershed so they can translate their knowledge into fun. I'll be posting highlights from the various job shadows so stay tuned.

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Conserve Carson River Work Days 2009

River Wranglers organized or collaborated on six work days in the Carson River watershed at the end of the year. The first event, in Carson Valley, was taught by high school students from Douglas High School FFA. They worked with elementary 4th graders from Gardnerville and Minden elementary schools. The high school students did a great job and many returned the following day to teach students from CC Meneley and Minden schools. What we did not expect was the severe decline in weather as a storm moved into the area and drenched our event, bringing in freezing temperatures as well. Not to be undone by weather, we donned black plastic garbage bags fashioned into raincoats. We persevered and the day ended well, probably more memorable than most. Allyson Lammiman and her students make a great team. Thanks to all of them!

Special recognition to Kim for taking over the bioengineering station when the adult in charge had a medical emergency. She didn't even flinch, took over the station and the work went on!

Way to go, Kim!

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Free Film Festival January 28, Carson City

The public is invited to attend a free film festival to view student multimedia projects that explore how Carson River riparian areas benefit the community and need to be protected by the public. The festival will be held on January 28 from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at the Carson City Sheriff’s Office, 911 E. Musser St.

Refreshments will be served, and a feature film about stream restoration will also be shown.

The video and slide-show projects are contestants in the Carson River Coalition Education Working Group’s “Keep Streamsides Greener, Keep Water Cleaner” contest, which will award a cash prize of $500 in each of four categories.

The contest was open to students in the ninth through 12th grades of Carson and Douglas high schools and Carson Valley and Pau-Wa-Lu middle schools. The entries had to be one to three minutes long, and were required to address this theme: How Carson River riparian areas benefit you and your community, and how to get people involved in riparian area preservation.Entries were judged on creativity, effective, quality of execution and compliance with contest rules and specifications.

The contest working group includes the Carson River Coalition’s Education Working Group, the Carson Water Subconservancy District, the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and River Wranglers. Prizes will be awarded to the best individual video, team video, individual animated slide show and team animated slide show. Also, each winning entry’s sponsoring teacher will earn $100.

Although each entrant or team had a sponsoring teacher to encourage participation and provide general guidance, students developed their own concepts and entries.

Dr. Susan Donaldson, a water quality expert with Cooperative Extension and a contest organizer, said the contest gives students an appreciation of how riparian areas provide important wildlife habitat and help keep the river clean by filtering runoff.

“Healthy, diverse riparian areas store water and help reduce floods, filter water and keep it cool and provide a place for recreation,” said Donaldson, who takes field trips to the river with certain classes. “They add to our quality of life.”

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Project WET and Sierra Nevada Journeys Workshop

August 13, 2009, Thursday, my last day with Linda, this day came too fast. Seems like this whole thing started a week ago, and I am sad to say good-bye. I’ve met wonderful people I hopefully will see again, and I hopefully will see Linda again.

Well to start things off about today, we drove up to Sand Harbor at Lake Tahoe, to have a fun day in the sun and do a Project WET workshop with Sierra Nevada Journeys. Mary Kay put the whole thing together, and Pat was in charge of kayaking from Sand Harbor to Thunderbird Lodge. We did a little ice breaker, go to know one another, and then we’re paired off onto the kayaks. Of course me and Linda were together. The water was calm and peaceful and looked so silky and smooth you just wanted to fall asleep on it, well I did anyways. A young woman, no older than in her twenties, told us history about Tahoe as we were paddling and we actually stopped above a school of fish. When we arrived at the little beach we set up canopies and got everything ready for the activities. Linda and I started things off with two posters and six questions per team, teams were separated through an invisible line on the sand. If you answered the question correctly on the first clue you got four points

and if you got it on the second you got three points and so on, but there was only four clues. After that we got pieces of paper and you crumpled them and then traced the top of the wrinkles with brown and then you’d add green for plants, and blue for water, and that was an activity to make your 3-D watershed. Linda and I presented the Incredible Journey.. Everybody got to make a water cycle bracelet and, at the end, tell their journey. After this activity was completed, we all got to have our lunch break. Pat told us about the house over the water, the

Thunderbird Lodge

, so after we settled our stomachs we headed over to the house. Since the waves and the wind were picking up we had to quickly migrate back to Sand Harbor after loading up the kayaks once more. The ride back was rough but it was challenging and fun. We got soaked a few times from the crash of the waves but it was nothing we couldn’t handle. Safely to the shore we unloaded and got into groups of six and had to defend and a make a solution for the problem we were given. Nick from Sierra Nevada Journeys was in charge of this activity and got us ready for the problem. The problem was this: Las Vegas is taking water from eastern Nevada and eastern Nevada needs water from the Truckee River. We were given a role to play, like acting, and you had to state why you thought the way your card told you. In the end we figured that we should use our water more carefully, and that Las Vegas should think again about taking our water. After the little groups gathered again to our big we all told our stories and solutions. Then Mary Kay talked to us for a while about the books we passed out and we started looking over some activities the teachers could do in the classrooms. Then as the day was hot and we were all tired Mary Kay decided to wrap up the day. This was my final day working with Linda and it couldn’t have been better.

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Greenwings Festival at Canvasback Duck Club

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Givi

ng up a Saturday isn’t always what someone wants to do. I don’t like giving them up but I made the exception for this particular Saturday. Linda took me out to

Stillwater

where they were hosting a kid event sponsored by the Canvasback Duck Club. The project that Linda and I did was about wetlands. We both had one pillow case and we would have things in it that the audience would pull out of our bag. We’d ask them what it was and how they thought it resembled part of a wetland. The audience was always shocked when they would pull out a box of Corn Flakes cereal, and they’d say they had no idea what it was for. Well Linda would say, ‘in the morning you go and pour yourself a bowl of this because… (Pause)….because you’re hungry right?’ Then the kids would say, ‘oh yea!’ We were also right next to the booth where they painted the decoy ducks, so that booth was super busy and a few kids thought they had to go to our booth before they could go paint one. When ever we had some parents bring over their kids we would make them reach in the bag and

p

ull out an item. So we tried to make it fun for everyone. We had some wetland soil and when we would explain what wetlands were Linda or I would open up the container and tell them to smell it, and Linda tried really hard to get the reaction of some of the funny faces they made but she wasn’t quite successful. At lunch time Linda and I walked around the room to see what was going on inside, they had exhibits of duck wings, duck drawings for a contest, darts, and a silent auction with some pretty neat stuff. They had boats and guns outside we had heard about but we didn’t look around outside to see what they had outside. We met a lot of new people, saw some very cute little kids, and although people thought this event was for boys there were a lot of girls there too.

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Carson River Summer School Field Trip

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July 21

st

2009, Linda and I worked with fourth graders teaching them about the Carson Watershed. They got into ten groups of four and sat around a map each group was given and we played a game kind of like ‘Where’s Waldo?’ I would pull out an animal pelt and Linda would say what it was, and at first I walked around with it so they could feel the fur but then Linda would take them from me so I wouldn’t have to. This was my very first time working with the animal pelts, and I was very uncomfortable. I couldn’t show the kids me emotions because if I was reacting weird to the pelt

s they would too. Well anyways they would find that animal on the map and then touch it. After that we ventured on for our hike down to the river. We stopped at the little wetland we had spotted before and we explained what wetlands were and how they were good to the environment. Linda and I did the activity about the wetlands where they pull out an object from the pillowcase. Every kid wanted to pull something from the pillow case, and they would crowd around me so I couldn’t move, and after they would pull they wanted to pull another one. So I ended up telling them to leave my area after they got to pick. A little girl said, ‘I haven’t picked yet. When are you going to let me pick? You’re not being fair.’ After that I didn’t let h

er go. Leaving the wetland was hard because the kids didn’t want to move. When we got around to the river, Linda played a game with them where they were detectives. They had to look around the river in the area we were in and decide if it was healthy or polluted. It was healthy, they decided. After we left from that little area, Linda and I walked down to a part where we had seen fishes the other day we were there, and little Jose followed us. Linda got a rock with bugs on it, but as we were walking toward the group of kids the bugs started falling off, so she got a new rock when we reached them by the river. The day was hot and no shade from clouds only trees, where ever you could find trees. It was fun working with the kids because they make you feel young again. A few little boys were saying songs that their friends made up that were around when I was there age, and they were drawing the same things I did when I was that age. It was just really pleasant.

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Water is Peter's Best Friend

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For my first project working with River Wranglers we created a flannel board. It’s titled ‘Water is Peter’s Best Friend’. The story is about a little boy named Peter, who has a best friend named Willy the water droplet. Willy tells Peter where water is a

nd how good water is for everything. The flannel board is going in the Children’s Museum in the Carson River Watershed area of the museum. This project took quite some time to color and since I loved coloring I thought it was fun, now I don’t find coloring so fun, maybe not for a while. We presented the flannel board to Margie, Genie, Sue, and Mary Kay at an education working group meeting.

It was the first time we had actually seen it fully together and complete. That was the point when I realized that it was finally done. Everybody who we presented it to thought it was it good, and they liked the colors we used. We are making another one, so hopefully this one can get done quicker now that we know what we are doing.

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The Incredible Journey at Empire Elementary School

Wednesday, July 15th, Linda and I went to Empire Elementary school to teach 3rd and 4th graders about the water cycle. The project we did was The Incredible Journey, where you become a water droplet and you start some where in the water cycle. You start out with the sun bead, then you get placed, when you are at your starting point you put on that bead. After you get the bead you roll the die that is there and you go to wherever the die tells you to go in the water cycle. We taught three classes, and after I watched Linda teach the project in the first two classes she decided I was ready to teach the third class. So I would tell the class where you can go if you were in the part of the water cycle and what color bead you get. Then they were off. After all that my job became ‘The Tier’ and I would tie the bracelet off after they had gotten twelve beads and then put the bracelet on their wrists. A few of the kids didn’t follow directions and would roll the die, decide they didn’t like the spot they had to go to and would wander around to get the color they wanted. I caught them in the act and tattled to Linda. Then they pulled off the misplaced beads and put them back in the correct containers. I usually am a good teacher but I cannot keep the attention of little kids. So this was definitely a challenge, not having attention and not following directions. At least it was my favorite activity that I got to teach. I am very glad I got to teach but I wouldn’t do it again unless I was forced to (or Linda asked me to again).

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UNCE Environmental Festival by Cora

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At the UNCE Environmental Festival at

Fuji

Park

, our table (Linda and me) was H2Olympics. Linda taught about cohesion by having people use a water dropper and putting water drops onto pennies. The average guesses that people had were about four or five, but actually twenty or more was what they ended up with on their penny before it over flowed. A little boy said, ’Wow! That’s really neat! How can it keep the bubble on the penny like that?’ And that’s when Linda would tell them about cohesion again. The second part of the Olympics was there would be a cup full of water and people would try to put on as many paperclips as you could onto the surface of the water but they couldn’t drop or it wouldn’t count. This one was for learning surface tension, and it was compared to the little bugs that can walk on the

water in the river or pool. A lot of people (of all ages) thought this was pretty neat. The last one we did was to show adhesion, and I’d have a full cup of water with a wet piece of yarn running down to another cup that was either empty or had some water in it. Place my finger over the yarn in the far back of the full cup and run the yarn down to the other cup and hold it right above it so you can see the water dripping. Then pour the water cup down so people can see the water running down the yarn and into the other cup. It was the biggest attraction and many people came over just to see it! ‘I want to try it!’ ‘Can I try it!?’ ‘That is so cool!’ were what we heard most of the time we did that activity. When the people coming around to booths started slowing down Linda and I would

water colo

r for our newest project and since Margie had a booth next to ours we had her come over and watercolor too. Before lunch Linda and I walked around and met some new people that were working the booths and we got a free tree each, Linda got a cucumber plant, I got a lanyard about being drug free, and I got to make a bird feeder at the wildlife booth. We learned about some of the fish they work with and Linda got a bracelet in the colors of orange and a peach to resemble fish eggs. The

Nevada

Museum

had a booth their and they had pictures of bears and snakes and coyotes, and they actually had rubber coyotes poop and Linda picked it up and was playing with it. I thought it was rea

l and was getting really grossed out by

this action she did until she told me it was rubber and she wouldn’t really touch coyote poop. The Museum exhibit also had bear scat, and they had three different kinds of snakes soaking in water and they had five types of lizards also soaking in the water. They had two snakes fully preserved and out in the sun so you could see them. They kind of scared me a little. Another thing they had was bear and coyote fossil foot prints. Those were my favorite thing they had. Today was really fun, and being outside all day was a blast, luckily the health man had sunscreen for everyone.

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Comstock Workers Wrap Trees at River

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On Wednesday, July 8

th,

the Comstock Workers program teamed up with the Dayton Valley Conservation District to wrap trees with wire for protection from the beavers. Blake Hiller was our leader and had planned on jobs for us to do. At first he had us pulling up dead White Top weeds from around the river bed. After that was accomplished Blake took us for a walk on the trails right around the river so we could learn about the damage that beavers were doing to the

Cottonwood

trees. Blake showed us how to wrap the trees so they would be safe from beavers and would still be able to grow. We then were put into groups and were given a new roll of wire and a pair of wire cutters. Around 10 o’clock Linda came and was helping out. Linda and I became a pair instead of a group and we went off to wrap some trees. We had to rewrap some of them, but then we got to wrap our own. We wrapped seven trees together over all and were forced back to our site to eat lunch. When that part of the day was through and everyone was gathered, Linda had an activity planned. Now earlier that day she told me I was going to be a beaver and asked if I would mind, because some

people might laugh at me. Well I thought she was just kidding. She talked about the beavers for about five minutes, and then called me up to help her. I stood there thinking I was going to have to talk about what I knew about beavers or something but boy was I wrong. Linda started dressing me up like I was a beaver. She put flippers on my feet, a balloon under the raincoat for my lungs, gloves with plastic finger nails on them, goggles, a belt with a dust pan on the end for my tail, and just all kinds of stuff. Meanwhile a beaver pelt was being passed around. Nobody really wanted to touch it so they would a signal for the person to pass it to someone else. After all this, the day at the river was through. We went back to the community center and got our checks, and were told we were going to be wrapping trees down at the river again on the 29

th

.

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Weed Track and Attack Workshop

Saturday 6/13/09 Linda took me, for my first day working, to the Weed Track and Attack Day. There I met Margie, she was the reason for the day, Genie, she helped out with everything, and few other people. We got bags with information about the noxious weeds, a garden shovel, gloves, and a coloring book. At first we looked at the fake noxious weeds so we could see what they looked like and know to look for, and we would take notes about why they were noxious and how to treat them. Then Margie handed out a GPS to everyone and gave instructions of where to go on it and how to get there and basically how to use it. We walked out to the horses water barrel and we marked it on the GPS that that was where we were headed, and we tested it out a few times. Margie then took us on a hike around the ranch and we looked at the wild flowers and the non-noxious weeds. We found a total of three noxious weeds, and the third one we found Linda and a man who worked with nature dug up the weed down to the root to make sure it wouldn’t come back again. It had prickles on the base and it was so sharp that it cut the mans arm, only a little bit, he was bleeding maybe a few grains of sand. When we were on our hike it started pouring rain but everyone wanted to continue on but since it started feeling like hail we headed back and after about two minutes it stopped completely, so we explored on. We walked into some Russian Knapweeds but since they were so big we couldn’t pull them so Margie was going to go out and spray them down. Continuing on our walk we went by the Carson River and looked for more weeds but couldn’t find any. After that we headed back the ranch house and used our GPS to get us going back toward the horses water barrel. When we all returned to the ranch house we ate lunch and asked questions about the GPS and the weeds, then Margie gave us a paper that we could fill out if we found a noxious weed and then she would get rid of it. When Linda and I we’re saying good-bye to everybody a dark object fell from the tree and almost hit Genie on her head. When she looked up she found an owl in the tree and it spat out bones from some animal I thought was a mouse. So after the pictures were taken we left.

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