On Friday, September 25, the Middle School got a closer look at part of our watershed. Donning raincoats and life jackets, they braved the chilly rain and spent part of the day canoeing along the James River. After a peaceful canoe journey to an island for lunch (and a swim in water warmer than the air), the group worked hard on the second part of the canoe trek, as the wind picked up, the rain fell harder, and the water became choppier. Everyone made it successfully to the landing in good time, and the group bundled up for a wagon ride to the Tye River Overlook, where they could see the confluence of the Tye and James Rivers. The park ranger told the students about Hurricane Camille in 1969, in which the Tye River crashed into the James with so much force (and so much water–it rained 21 inches in 3 hours!) that the James ran backwards almost nine miles, lapping backwards against the bridge that crosses it on Route 60. After a day of being in the water, on the water, above the water, and under a pretty steady falling rain, the Middle School class and their teachers had experienced this part of their watershed in almost every way possible. The trip, part of a science unit on watersheds, is one the students won’t soon forget.