Pat Shingleton: ' Cryogenics, Bats and Bent Grass..."
Scientists continue to investigate the reduction of glaciers around the world with evidence pointing to global warming. Climbers made an amazing discovery 13,000 feet above King's Canyon in California's Sierra Nevada mountains fifteen years ago. It's the highest mountain range in the lower 48 states and in 1947 pilots conducted training exercises while battling all kinds of weather from the military bases situated on each side of the mountain range. The discovery matched records of a crash in this vicinity nearly sixty years ago with Sequoia National Park rangers identifying an unopened parachute, made of silk, that hasn't been used in twenty years. Four bodies were recovered from the '47 crash with no mention of a fifth and the discovery was of benefit to family members, history, nature and forensics. Climbers found the body of the military airman, preserved in a virtual cryogenic state with fragments of dog tags and clothing. We've enjoyed some cool, chilly, nights, it takes some super-cold temperatures to whack the mosquito larvae. The National Wildlife Week is a resource that interprets the impact of weather on wildlife and suggested that south Louisiana could use a few more bats. Brown bats eat 1,000 mosquitoes in an hour. The bats also eat beetles and moths that are agricultural pests. The California leaf nosed bat grabs beetles, crickets and grasshoppers at ground level. Fruit bats comprise 30% of the bat population and if you like tequila, these bats pollinate agave. Seeds dropped by bats account for 95 percent of forest regrowth. Finally, sunlight travels at 186,282 miles per second and once it hits the golf course strange things can happen. Especially, in the way you think and specifically in reading a putt. Golf courses all over the world have a variety of grasses and one variety, called "bent" grass, was so named because of its attraction to the sun. As the sun rises, the grass will lay toward it. As the sun crosses the sky, the grass will lay in the opposite direction. You'll see many pros not only "reading" the line of the putt but the way the grass is lying as it approaches the cup from their vantage point. Many professional golfers believe grass has a grain causing the ball to break toward the setting sun. They contend that blades of grass have a shiny appearance; if you're down grain, the ball will roll faster. My son Mike noted that the dead spot on the rim of the cup will also assist in determining where the break point was compromised when the cup was cut-in.
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