On Friday 28th June, all of Year 8 made the journey up to the Peak District. Starting at the stepping stones in Dovedale, we walked south, taking in the scenery. You could find marine fossils in the stepping stones, if you looked closely. This is evidence to show that the British Isles was once submerged underwater as it travelled up from Antarctica over a billion years, to where we are today.
The air was clean, fresher than most urban areas that usually give off many particles full of dust and pollutants. For this reason, national parks are a great place to relax, especially for those who work in major urban cities and towns in a busy environment.
Next we carried on until we reached limestone arch where we learned about how it was formed. Firstly, a deep crack penetrates the limestone layer; then, the crack widens due to the weathering process from acid rain. The acidic rainwater continually dissolved the limestone. This combined with freeze thaw weathering causes a small arch to form. This arch continues to widen as weathering continues. Eventually, the base will widen so much that the arch will collapse.
As we carried on, we passed Ilam Rock and studied its shape. The 25 metre high rock is the fossilised remains of sea creatures that lived in the shallow tropical lagoon. We were amazed about how it formed and it shape.
Next, we stopped at the Dove Holes to take a break while learning about how these caves formed: rainwater picks up carbon dioxide from the air and as it filters through the soil, turns into a weak acid. This slowly dissolves out the limestone along the joints, bedding planes and fractures, some of which become enlarged enough to form caves.
As we carried on we passed Ravens’ Tor where we learned about its formation:
- First of all the rainwater fills up the cracks in the rocks
- Second of all at night the temperatures drop causing the water to freeze and expand, making the rock weaker
- After it causes the rocks to shatter creating debris
- Next repeating the process makes what we can see today.
To end our journey we reached Milldale: a nice and quiet village where there was no litter at all. Milldale is at the bottom of a fairly steep hill and has a minor stench (only the animals!).
Overall we enjoyed our journey to Dovedale, learning about the history and the rocks. We would like to give an extra special thank you to the Geography Department for organising such an amazing trip.
Muhammad Yaqub, 8 Alfred