Solid Ground (Kentucky Moon Book 1)

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Had you been witness to this scene, you might exclaim, "what in Hades is that mammoth animal coming my way? It's a mammoth. And right behind it a group of mastodons. One is grazing on the native grasses, while the other is browsing on the woody shrubs and trees for nourishment to continue their never-ending trek for food and sustenance. And right on their tails is a group of funny-looking little men carrying spears with sharpened rocks on the end and spear launchers, with their immediate family members in tow, all smacking their lips, thinking they're going to be feasting on one of these huge critters for supper!

Overly simplified, sure, but essentially that's the prehistoric story for this part of Kentucky. During the last ice age, our oceans' waters were being used up to form sheets of solid ice, sometimes two-miles thick! This lowered the existing water levels enough to expose a solid land bridge from Asia to North America, called Beringia.

We know it today as the Bering Straight. Across this solid land bridge, the nomadic, wandering herds of the Pleistocene megafauna made their way for the very first time onto our continent.

Cris Coursey (Author of Kentucky Moon)

Eventually these huge Pleistocene mammals became extinct. To cut to the chase — humans hunted them to extinction. And the best place to hunt them was where they congregated for their salt intake. There were many, many salt sources, called licks, in the area of their grazing territory.

Cris Coursey - AbeBooks

Since these animals were all plant eaters, they had to get their dietary supply of salt by 'licking' the ground near these salty deposits. By contrast, meat-eaters get their supply from the meat they consumed. So, they were hunted at these licks and their carcasses rotted away, leaving behind oversized remains, a.

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Big Bones. All throughout pre-history, humans knew about Big Bone Lick. It became a one-stop-shopping-place for generations upon generations of Native Americans. Both the early British and the early French explorers and fur trappers were introduced to the site by their native guides and trading customers. Eventually, these men of the Enlightenment compared and contrasted the knowledge and theories they'd gleaned from these unusual "new'" world specimens.

They were considered 'naturalists' and experts in this field of study. But it was really Thomas Jefferson who got the ball rolling for us here in America. He was an instrumental champion for the exquisite natural history extant here in North America. He wrote only one book in his life, "Notes on the State of Virginia.

Jefferson believed that natural anomalies wonders needed to be studied and preserved. He personally purchased the tract of land in Virginia, which contained Virginia's Natural Bridge. In , while Governor of Virginia, he delivered a military grant of 1, acres which included Big Bone Lick and its surrounds to Colonel Christian, who in turn sold it to David Ross. Both of these men were friends of Jefferson, which meant he would retain access to this place that contained those strange, big bones.

Therefore I like to think that it was Jefferson who first attempted to preserve this rare piece of real estate for the sake of scientific study and knowledge. While Thomas Jefferson was President, he pulled off one of the most famous and spectacular land deals in history — pretty much right under the noses of Congress — when he acquired the 'other two-thirds' of our country from France. Then he planned, organized, coordinated and initiated his very own 'moon landing' for the time when he sent William Clark and Meriwether Lewis, with a handful of men mostly recruited out of Kentucky, because Kentucky kicked ass even way back then , to explore that western territory and meet and interrogate the natives to learn about their cultures even though many of them had never seen a white man before, much less understood his language.

Another of Jefferson's directives was to find out where those giant mammals, the mastodons, had finally settled. Remember, Jefferson at this time was not a believer in extinction. He was sure the beasts had simply relocated. Nearly the entire M oon is covered by a rubble pile of charcoal-gray, powdery dust and rocky debris called the lunar regolith. Beneath is a region of fractured bedrock referred to as the megaregolith. The light areas of the M oon are known as the highlands. The dark features, called maria Latin for seas , are impact basins that were filled with lava between 4.

These light and dark areas represent rocks of different composition and ages, which provide evidence for how the early crust may have crystallized from a lunar magma ocean. The craters themselves, which have been preserved for billions of years, provide an impact history for the moon and other bodies in the inner solar system.

Solid Ground (Kentucky Moon Book 1)

If you looked in the right places on the Moon , you would find pieces of equipment, American flags, and even a camera left behind by astronauts. While you were there, you'd notice that the gravity on the surface of the M oon is one-sixth of Earth's, which is why in footage of moonwalks, astronauts appear to almost bounce across the surface. The temperature reaches about degrees Fahrenheit degrees Celsius when in full sun, but in darkness, the temperatures plummets to about degrees Fahrenheit degrees Celsius.

During the initial exploration of the moon, and the analysis of all the returned samples from the Apollo and the Luna missions, we thought that the surface of the moon was dry. The first definitive discovery of water was made in by the Indian mission Chandrayaan-1, which detected hydroxyl molecules spread across the lunar surface and concentrated at the poles. M issions usch as Lunar Prospector, LCROSS, and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, have not only shown that the surface of the Moon has a global hydration, but there are actually high concentrations of ice water in the permanently shadowed regions of the lunar poles.

Scientists also found the lunar surface releases its water when the Moon is bombarded by micrometeoroids. The surface is protected by a layer, a few centimeters of dry soil that can only be breached by large micrometeoroids. When micrometeoroids impact the surface of the moon, most of the material in the crater is vaporized.

Most of that water is released into space.

Blue Moon of Kentucky John Fogerty

The M oon has a very thin and weak atmosphere, called an exosphere. It does not provide any protection from the sun's radiation or impacts from meteoroids. Potential for Life.

The many missions that have explored the Moon have found no evidence to suggest it has its own living things. However, the Moon could be the site of future colonization by humans. The discovery the Moon harbors water ice, and that the highest concentrations occur within darkened craters at the poles, makes the Moon a little more hospitable for future human colonists. Earth's Moon has no moons of its own. The Moon has no rings. The early Moon may have developed an internal dynamo, the mechanism for generating global magnetic fields for terrestrial planets, but today, the Moon has a very weak magnetic field.

The magnetic field here on Earth is many thousands of times stronger than the Moon's magnetic field. Earth's Moon. Overview The brightest and largest object in our night sky, the Moon makes Earth a more livable planet by moderating our home planet's wobble on its axis, leading to a relatively stable climate. The Latest. A 3D model of Earth's Moon. Apollo 12 was ambitious, aiming for a pinpoint landing in the Ocean of Storms. The next full Moon will be on Tuesday morning, Nov. A new study suggests that while a majority of lunar ice deposits are likely billions of years old, some may be more recent.

Meanwhile, back on Earth, Tony Colaprete was holding his breath: Would it work?

The next full Moon will be on Sunday afternoon, October 13, , The Moon will appear full for about three days centered on this time, from Saturday morning to Tuesday morning. Here are 10 of our favorite ways to observe the Moon. Obscured in the Lunar Highlands?

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The next full Moon will be early Saturday morning, September 14, Find out what else to watch for in the skies during the next few weeks.