Still Stuck (+ 0 Miles)
January 5, 2009: Migration Day 70

How are these children helping the young cranes and their migration? Find out here: >>
Photo Lisa Harrison, University of Chicago Lab Schools

This morning's blanket of fog was so heavy that the team could hear, but not see the cows that were mooing loudly just 30 yards away in the adjacent field. This is the sixth day that unfavorable conditons plague the team in Chilton County, Alabama. From the team's camp, Liz reported: "Yesterday, in anticipation of the windy, rainy weather, the pilots broke down their aircraft, removing and stowing the wings, and pushing the trikes into our host's barn for protection. There they will stay for at least today — and perhaps tomorrow as well." Woe! When will the weather change so this migration can hit the road again?

Meanwhile, admiration and love for the cranes and their human leaders is not at all dampened. Do you remember the children in Mrs. Harrison's class who had a visit from Joe and Heather? The kids were determined to beat the amount they raised last year ($568.84) for Operation Migration's Change 4 Cranes program — and they did! Today they will celebrate as their teacher announces the grand total and they send the money to the OM team. (Photo coming.) For now, visit the class's home page in our Classrooms in Action section to see more photos that show the children's excitement and love for the cranes.

In the Classroom:

  • Today's Journal Questions:
    (a) Write a statement that summarizes the trend shown in this table. Explain why you think this trend is happening. What has the team done this year in hopes of changing this trend? (Read bonus question below.)
    Left WI Arrived FL # of Days
    Oct. 17, '01 Dec. 3
    Oct. 17, '02 Nov. 30
    Oct. 17, '03 Dec. 8
    Oct. 17, '04 Dec. 12
    Oct. 17, '05 Dec. 13
    Oct. 17, '06 Dec. 19
    Oct. 17, '07 Jan. 29, '08
    Oct. 17, '08
  • (b-for-bonus) Read what pilot Chris wrote in the Field Journal after the Dec. 30 flight: "We were slow to gain altitude, only 500 feet high after 30 minutes; yet, the air remained glass-smooth despite the steep valleys and ridges below us. There is a certain point in most flights where the birds settle into a nice formation and stop thinking about turning back towards their familiar pen. Today that was at about the 30-minute mark. I was finally able to begin a climb, coaxing the birds along at nearly 100 feet per minute until we got to 1,500 feet. It was at this altitude that I finally got a chance to see why we have moved the route west. The Appalachian Mountain chain runs from northern Maine southwest through the Carolinas and northern Georgia. The heavily wooded foothills taper out in central Alabama and our new route takes us over these foothills that can one can actually see disappear off the southwest. Several ridges could be seen rising to the northeast that just tapered away to nothing in the southwest. It was a beautiful sight to see." Write a response to Chris's entry in your own journal. Why do you think the new route is safer?

Journey North is pleased to feature this educational adventure presented in cooperation with the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).