Upper School physics and engineering teacher Danielle Horton led 14 students and four faculty members on a trip to the Davis Mountains the weekend of Nov. 1-4, 2018. In addition to studying the local flora and fauna, the group participated in a service project for the Davis Mountains Nature Conservancy. Spartans worked the land, improving trails and access to a remote section of the Conservancy. The next day they visited the Chihuahuan Desert Nature Institute for an extensive hike, during which they learned about the ecology, geology and wildlife of the Rio Grande River Basin. Evenings consisted of a star party at McDonald Observatory and a guided night hike through the Conservancy.
Other highlights of the trip included roasting marshmallows on a charcoal grill (due to the burn ban in the Preserve), spotting a Black bear on a migration route from the mountains of Mexico to New Mexico, playing games in the lodge, and making new friends.
The intrepid participants included (pictured left to right): Tony Shan, Vijay Jhaveri, Miranda Weber, Richard Shao, Chloe Lawrence, Allen Cao, biology teacher Kathy McCain, Veer Chauhan, Lillian Gunn, Cole McQuinn, Kate Beveridge, Ari Sher, Leo Gao, Leo Chou, Cristian Dominguez and West Texas Program leader Danielle Horton.
The West Texas Program at St. Stephen's creates opportunities for students to go on short, four- or five-day field trips to learn about land and water conservation in West Texas. Students get to camp under the stars, hike the land, search for fossils, visit with local ranchers and help preserve and protect the land. Students interested in going on a West Texas Program trip should contact Danielle Horton.
West Texas Trips for the 2018-19 Academic Year
Davis Mountains Nature Preserve, November 1-4
Independence Creek Preserve, November 29-December 2
Terlingua Fossil Trip, January 16-20
Davis Mountains Nature Preserve (Girls Only), January 31-February 3
Independence Creek Preserve (Seniors Only), April 25-28