July marked the beginning of our field work for the Upper Henry’s Fork River project, and Jack and I have been going out three days a week to collect data. Each week we visit 5 different sites along the river and collect macrophyte samples, measure percent cover of macrophytes, gauge forest canopy, sample substrate, test water quality and measure water flow. I’ve also started to conduct my individual research on how much coarse and fine particulate organic matter is floating down the river by catching it via a netting system at three locations: Buffalo River, Flat Rock, and Last Chance. After working outside, we measure turbidity, and clean, weigh, and dry the macrophyte samples in the lab. We’ve seen two moose and two babies in the field so far, as well as a mink and chipmunks, trout of course, and lots of wildflowers! Aside from a few storms, we’ve had great weather and I cannot imagine working in a more beautiful “office” than the Henrys Fork itself.
On weekends we’ve hiked the seven mile hole and mount Washburn in Yellowstone, and camped near Lake Yellowstone where we saw a fox eating a marmot on the trail, and bunches of geysers and hot springs along the trail.