Sweet Home Alabamas, Ca.Brett Matthew BellGeology 103 Spring 2013
•Presentation ContentsIntroduction into the Geological Variations within Lone Pine, Ca.Metamorphic Presence in the Alabama HillsAnimal Life in the Owen’s ValleyPlant LifeSection ISection IISection VISection IIISection IVDon’t take Mt. Whitney for GraniteSection VSection VIIOwens Dry LakebedFinal Thoughts
•Section IIMetamorphic Presence in the Owens ValleyThe oldest type of rock foundin theAlabama Hills ismetamorphosedVolcanic rockwhich is between200 MillionYears ago and150 MillionYears ago.Orange Colored andextremely weathered.Photo Taken by Brett Matthew Bell
•Section IIMetamorphic Presence in the Owens ValleyWithin theAlabama hills theirare two different types of rocksso it is important not to get the twoConfused.The bigger, more round,egg shaped rocks are differentthen the metamorphosed volcanicrock.These egg shaped rocksare known as monzogranite, atype of igneous rock.Photo Taken by Brett Matthew Bell
• Mt. Whitney is the tallestMountain in the continentalUnited States at 14,505feet.• Is composed of an Igneousrock known as granite.• Intrusive• Same as the granite rocksfound in the Alabama Hills•Section IIIDon’t take Mt. Whitney for GranitePhoto Taken by Brett Matthew Bell
• Section IIIDon’t take Mt. Whitney for GraniteMt.Whitney is located in California within the SierraNevada Mountain range. Moulton rock created a sub-duction during the Cretaceous Period which grew underthe soon to be massive mountain. Slowly over the past 10million years the Sierra Nevada mountain range waspushed up.As the mountain grew larger and larger, rivererosion washed away the layers of rock allowing thegranite rock to protrude into the sky as it does today.
•Section IIIDon’t take Mt. Whitney for GraniteMassive Igneous Granite Mountain tops in the Sierra Nevada’s.Photo Taken by Brett Matthew Bell
•Section IVAnimal Life in the Owen’s ValleyThe survival of animals has always beena constant battle against theenvironment in which one lives.Animals sometimes seem to have itmade at times while it seems someanimals struggle on a daily basis just tosurvive the harsh conditions where theyreside. I believe this may be the casewith a few of the animals which residein Lone Pine, Ca. and the surroundingarea. It was hot and dry as I walkedthrough the desert during the coupleweeks I was there and I found thatanimal life seemed to be extremelyminimal compared to the life which Iam use to here in South LakeTahoe.
•Section IVAnimal Life in the Owen’s ValleyPhoto from: pinker.wjh.harvard.eduThe blue belly lizard can be foundin parts all over California. I spenta couple hours trying to huntsome down and catch one to takea picture but it was extremelydifficult due to their agility andspeed.These attributes areprobably extremely vital in orderfor them to survive because in thisenvironment, it is a constantbattle for food. Being slow couldultimately cost one it’s life.Blue Belly Lizard(Western Fence Lizard)
•Section IVAnimal Life in the Owen’s ValleyWhile in the field I noticed a jackrabbitrunning across the rough terrain in theAlabama hills. He was too quick for me tograb a quick picture but the one I saw wasalmost identical to the one in the picture.What I noticed about this rabbit was his bigsize. I have always had this conception of cutelittle bunnies but this rabbit was the exactopposite. I am assuming that evolution hascaused this rabbit to grow in size in order tosurvive the conditions.The bigger sizeprobably gives the rabbit an advantage fromothers which could potentially be preying onhim. Good thing I left the dog at homeduring my field day!Jackrabbit(Hare)Picture taken from: www.flickr.com
•Section VPlant LifeIt is amazing to see thatplants, similar toanimals, have been ableto adapt to climates inorder to survive as well.I noticed that it wasreally dry while I washere; however, plantswere still blooming andcactus seemed to begrowing just fine.Photo Taken by Brett Matthew Bell
• Opuntia humifusa Cactus•Section VPlant LifePhoto Taken by Brett Matthew Bell13
•Section V-IPlant LifePhoto Taken by Brett Matthew Bell
•Section V-IIPlant LifePhoto Taken by Brett Matthew BellYerba Mansa Flowers
•Section VPlant LifeYerba Mansa Flower Fun Facts• Yerba Mansa means “Fire andWater”• Can help sooth insect bites, blisters, ring worm, & sunburn• Can be used externally for sore, aching muscles• Can be used internally via yerba Mansa tea• Internal use helps colds, lung problems, cystitis, & stomach aches• The Native Americans introduced it to Spanish Settlers• Grows mainly in alkaline wetlandsWorks Cited: "The Medicinal Plant of Our Past,Present and Future."
Owens Lake was once abeautiful, vibrant body of waterlocated in the heart of theOwens Valley. Today, it canaccount for the “single largestsource of dust pollution in thenation” (Source). When I askeda local resident how they feltabout the lake I got a responseof “I wish Los Angeles Countynever stole our water in the late1920’s because it would havebeen so beautiful here. At leastthe thiefs decided to slowly giveus some water back into thelake.” (Hnizdil)•Section VIOwens Dry Lake BedPhoto Taken by Brett Matthew Bell
Photo Taken by Brett Matthew Bell•Section VIOwens Dry Lake Bed
•Section VI• Owens Dry Lake Bed“During the last period of glaciation in the Sierra Nevadathe nose of the glaciers reached into the Owens Valleyonly to be melted by the desert heat.” (Owens Dry Lake)The water which melted from these glaciers flowed intothe Owens Valley creating a lake which was once nearly40 feet deep. Today, it is nothing more then a small pondon a giant piece of small rocks and sediments.
Photo Taken by Brett Matthew BellOwens Dry Lake Bed•Section VI
•Section VIIFinal ThoughtsAfter traveling down to lone pine for a couple weeks I was able to reflecton how driving just a few hours away from home can change my entirequarter in school.The world is constantly ever changing as time continueson.With the destruction of habitats brings life and new habitats for plantsand animals.Today, the elevation of Mt.Whitney is 14,505 feet but whoknows how tall it will be tomorrow. It took millions of years for thisenormous igneous rock to grow and it continues to grow today. Earth isconstantly reshaping and moving every second of everyday and I have spentmy entire 25 years of life never thinking twice about it, until now. I got tosee first hand that humans may think that they are in control of earth;however, mother nature will always have the upper hand betweenvolcanoes, earthquakes, tornadoes, etc. Both land and sea is always dancingwith one another 24 hours a day.Thank you for viewing my journey out inthe field of Lone Pine, California.
Works Cited• "Alabama Hills." Wikipedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 June 2013.• Desert Jackrabbit. N.d. Photograph. Death Valley, California. Flickr. Web. 21June 2013. <www.flickr.com>.• Hnizdil, Adrianne“Interview with Local." Personal interview. 23 May 2013.• "Owens Dry Lake." Lone Pine Chamber of Commerce. N.p., n.d. Web. 22June 2013. <http://www.lonepinechamber.org/sightseeing/owens-lake.html>.• "Owens Lake." Wikipedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 June 2013.• Pinker, Steven. Harvard University. About.com, n.d. Web. 21 June 2013.• "The Medicinal Plant of Our Past ,Present and Future." Yerba Mansa. N.p.,n.d. Web. 21 June 2013.