I don't have altitude sickness yet, but it's still early — I'm used to about 1,000 feet above sea level, not 9,000 feet. While I wait for the headaches and nausea to kick in, I'm enjoying the upside of altitude: sky-high spectacles like the photo above.


I arrived late yesterday in Silverthorne, Colo., where I'll be spending the next few days basking in science-centric enlightenment at the Keystone Science School. We're just halfway through a packed schedule in our first full day, which has included an exercise in environmental critical thinking, a hands-on crash course in "geocaching" and a group challenge in map reading — not to mention a peak performance at lunchtime by the Keystone Center chefs. We're in an hourlong break right now, followed by another maps challenge and a seminar called "Introduction to Simulation."


I'll report about what I've learned when I have some free time (assuming I don't get a firsthand science lesson in altitude sickness first), but in the meantime, I'm just enjoying the experience. The scenery isn't bad, either.


(Full disclosure: This trip is paid for by Georgia-Pacific, a sponsor of MNN. GP has supported the Keystone Science School for more than a decade, and also helps send several science teachers there every year.)


Russell McLendon ( @russmclendon ) writes about humans and other wildlife.

Sitting on top of the world
As a week of discovery kicks off at Colorado's Keystone Science School, Mother Nature welcomes her guests in mile-high style.