Geography Field Study

At our first location which was Creg Beach, Lahinch, Co. Clare we observed a diversion of the River Moy. With a compass, the direction of the diversion was determined and recorded.

I then took a photo of the diversion and drew a sketch map of it. Further across the beach each student picked a stone at random from the beach surface, wiped it clean and placed it on a flat surface. A drop of hydrochloric acid was placed on each rock and each rock that reacted was counted and recorded as limestone and we observed the rocks that did not react with the HCL. As a class, we examined a piece of beach bedrock.

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Firstly, I touched the bedrock to determine whether it was a smooth or rough texture and then looked for layers or any other obvious features. I then examined the colour of the rock.

Again we used hydrochloric acid on the bedrock and noted whether there was a reaction or not. We used a Rock Identification and Geological map to identify the rock type. A transect line was then placed down the beach; I used a measuring tape to find the middle of it. A throwing quadrat was placed at the bottom of the beach and 20 pebbles were picked from it at random by students. These pebbles were measured using vernier calipers and their sizes were recorded.

The 20 pebbles roundness was examined and classified using a Powers Roundness Chart.

All of this data was recorded. This process was also repeated on the middle and upper parts of the beach along the transect line. We then examined the beach for examples of a cusp. After identifying the cusps we placed ranging poles at the point of 4 cusps that were side by side and used a trundle wheel to measure the distance between them. We recorded the distances and whether the distance was uniform between each one.

Using a viewfinder we sketched the cusps and took pictures to improve our sketches later on.

Upon scanning the beach for an example of a berm and finding one we measured the width of the berm using a trundle wheel, we recorded this data and used a viewfinder to sketch the berm and took photos to improve our sketches later on. At our second location which was Doolin Harbour, Doolin, Co. Clare a ranging pole was placed, by a member of our group wearing a wetsuit, where the waves were breaking. Using a clicker/counter I counted how many times waved broke after one minute.

Another group member used a stopwatch to time the minute. We did this 3 times, rotating roles on the 2nd and 3rd minutes.

We then recorded this data. Using a chart I had that showed spilling and plunging waves, I observed the waves I had just counted and compared them to it. I decided which category today’s waves were in and I recorded this data. Standing on an exposed area of the beach making sure no one was blocking the wind I turned my head until I could feel the wind blowing directly at my face.

I then placed a compass on the flat of my hand with the blue arrow of the housing pointing into the wind. I turned the compass dial until the red arrow was lined up with the casing, I took this point as north.

I carefully read the wind direction from the compass dial and recorded the direction in which the wind was blowing. Having calculated the wind direction, I then used an anemometer to measure wind speed. Holding the anemometer up with the two holes facing the wind, I observed the ball in the window of the anemometer moving up and down for about 20 seconds. I recorded the highest speed reached in mph.

I converted the speed from mph to kmph using my calculator and the simple formula – xmph X 8/5 =ykmph. I then examined the Beaufort Scale Chart to determine what force the wind was today.