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Teachers guide to geologic trails in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, Pennsylvania–New Jersey

Jack B. Epstein
Jack B. Epstein
U.S. Geological Survey, 12201 Sunrise Valley Drive, MS 926A, Reston, Virginia 20192–0002, USA
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January 01, 2010


The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area (DEWA) contains a rich geologic and cultural history within its 68,714 acre boundary. Following the border between New Jersey and Pennsylvania, the Delaware River has cut a magnificent gorge through Kittatinny Mountain, the Delaware Water Gap, to which all other gaps in the Appalachian Mountains have been compared. Proximity to many institutions of learning in this densely populated area of the northeastern United States (Fig. 1) makes DEWA an ideal locality to study the geology of this part of the Appalachian Mountains. This one-day field trip comprises an overview discussion of structure, stratigraphy, geomorphology, and glacial geology within the gap. It will be highlighted by hiking a choice of several trails with geologic guides, ranging from gentle to difficult. It is hoped that the “professional” discussions at the stops, loaded with typical geologic jargon, can be translated into simple language that can be understood and assimilated by earth science students along the trails. This trip is mainly targeted for earth science educators and for Pennsylvania geologists needing to meet state-mandated education requirements for licensing professional geologists. The National Park Service, the U.S. Geological Survey, the New Jersey Geological Survey, and local schoolteachers had prepared “The Many Faces of Delaware Water Gap: A Curriculum Guide for Grades 3–6” (Ferrence et al., 2003). Copies of this guide will be given to trip participants and can be downloaded from the GSA Data Repository1. The trip will also be useful for instruction at the graduate level. Much of the information presented in this guidebook is modified from Epstein (2006).

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GSA Field Guide

The Mid-Atlantic Shore to the Appalachian Highlands

Gary M. Fleeger
Gary M. Fleeger
Pennsylvania Geological Survey 3240 Schoolhouse Road Middletown, Pennsylvania 17057-3534 USA
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Steven J. Whitmeyer
Steven J. Whitmeyer
Department of Geology and Environmental Science James Madison University 800 S. Main Street, MSC 6903 Harrisonburg, Virginia 22807 USA
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Geological Society of America
ISBN electronic:
Publication date:
January 01, 2010




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