My Echo Story: Walking Mountains Science Center |

My Echo Story: Walking Mountains Science Center

Kristen Belschner
Special to the Daily
Vail, CO Colorado

Eagle County – More than just a field trip, Walking Mountains Science Center’s SOAR (Science Outreach and Applied Research) programs are outdoor learning experiences that provide Eagle County students with the opportunity to practice detailed observation, work together as a team, participate in research and gain greater connection to the natural world in which they live.

This year, 438 middle school and high school students experienced hands-on learning through this field program, studying topics including population and winter ecology, snow science, biodiversity research and geomorphology. Students engage in natural science exploration, empowering them to become stewards of our environment all while having a whole lot of fun.

According to a sixth grader from Homestake Peak School, “When you’re inside for science you don’t get to see what the teacher is talking about. Learning outside, you can actually see it and understand it.”

During the SOAR process, students collect important information such as data on stream health and natural ecosystems, or information about our snowpack. They are introduced to field research methods enhancing their ability to more fully observe, interpret, and appreciate the ecological significance of our natural world.

This poem was written during biodiversity solo time by a sixth-grade student from Homestake Peak:


The trickle of water,

the touch of a cool breeze,

take me somewhere.

Somewhere is a place

where grass dances,

the clouds draw,

flowers smile.

The sprinkled snow,

the flying leaves,

take me somewhere.

Somewhere is a place

where rocks can be gentle,

the dirt is clean

and the sky is more than blue.

The whispering stillness,

the refreshing air,

take me somewhere.

Somewhere is a place

where I am open,

where I am calm,

where I am me.

Somewhere is nature.

Thanks to our partnership with Vail Resorts Echo, Walking Mountains is better equipped to teach our local students, families and guests about Eagle County’s spectacular mountain environment.

Vail Resorts Echo’s support is critical in making our programs affordable and accessible to everyone. In the same manner that ecology is the study of connections and balance in nature, Vail Resorts is deeply connected and concerned about this place and its people.

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