William "Sandy" Schenck lead a field trip through the Delaware Piedmont for the A.I. duPont High School Earth Science Class. The trip made use of the Wilmington-Western Railroad and everyone rode the railroad's "Doodle Bug." Activities included up close examinations of rock and mineral features and even "Panning for Garnets" at Brandywine Springs Park.
A field trip to Bringhurst Woods Park is appropriate for students in grades 5 and up (10 years and older), and provides an opportunity to observe intrusive plutonic igneous rocks that have intruded into country rock, which in this case is the blue rock or what geologists call the Brandywine Blue Gneiss. In addition, the minerals in the pluton are large, easily identified, and interesting. Mineral collecting is not allowed within the park, however permission may be obtained to collect along Shellpot Creek southeast of the park. Please do not use rock hammers on the rocks in the park.
The non-marine Cretaceous sediments of northern Delaware older than the Magothy formation cannot be divided accurately into formations or mappable geologic units because their lithologic characteristics are very similar. However, two heavy mineral zones can be distinguished in these deposits: a lower staurolite-kyanite-tourmaline-zircon zone, and an upper tourmaline-zircon-rutile zone with abundant alterites. They have been named the Patuxent zone and the Patapsco-Raritan zone respectively.