Fairfax Master Naturalists Go To Riverbend Park

The spring class of Fairfax Master Naturalists was greeted by the early wildflowers during their first field trip to Riverbend Park on March 14. Riverbend Park is located along the Potomac River in Great Falls. It provides an opportunity to learn the geology of the Potomac Gorge and to view rocks that are part of the Mather Gorge Formation in the upper reaches.

Soil Scientist Dan Schwartz pulls core samples to show soil horizons

According to the Great Falls Connection, “Soil composition was part of the morning lecture. Soil scientist Dan Schwartz, with Fairfax County’s Soil and Water Conservation District, pulled core samples to illustrate the levels or horizons of soil. Soil is composed of varying amounts of sand, silt and clay present in four soil horizons: an organic-rich surface layer, clayey, a layer between soil and rock, and solid bedrock. Master Naturalist students observed the differences in color and composition in layers from core samples taken at river level and higher on the river ridge.”

As per Great Falls Connection, “The current spring class meetings are impacted by the health crisis. The group will explore on-line training options going forward; their March 28 field trip to Huntley Meadows to study Ornithology and Herpetology has been postponed due to the limit on gatherings of more than ten people. Park trails, such as those at Huntley Meadows and Riverbend remain open to the public.”

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Maryam N. is a Senior Writer at Nesbitt Realty. She is an expert on Fairfax County. Maryam has also worked previously as a geologist. She is a foodie and enjoys cooking and exploring new restaurants.