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Magnetic Springs Earthcache

A cache by MathSeeker Send Message to Owner Message this owner
Hidden : 10/01/2010
1.5 out of 5
1.5 out of 5

Size: Size:   not chosen (not chosen)

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Geocache Description:

This Earthcache is located at the famous Magnetic Springs in Eureka Springs, Arkansas and is easily accessed.

Any metal object placed in the spring water was widely claimed to become magnetized. It was also claimed that exclusive use of the water from Magnetic Spring would cure physical debility and aid in the overcoming drug addiction. Drug addiction was prevalent in the late Victorian era due to widespread use of patent medicines containing alcohol and narcotics.

Spring (hydrosphere)
A spring is a component of the hydrosphere, namely any natural occurrence where water flows to the surface of the earth from below the surface. Thus it is where the aquifer surface meets the ground surface.


A spring may be the result of karst topography where surface water has infiltrated the Earth's surface (recharge area), becoming part of the area groundwater. The groundwater then travels though a network of cracks and fissures - openings ranging from intergranular spaces to large caves. The water eventually emerges from below the surface, in the form of a spring. The forcing of the spring to the surface can be the result of a confined aquifer in which the recharge area of the spring water table rests at a higher elevation than that of the outlet. Spring water forced to the surface by elevated sources are artesian wells. This is possible even if the outlet is in the form of a 300-foot-deep (91 m) cave. In this case the cave is used like a hose by the higher elevated recharge area of groundwater to exit through the lower elevation opening.

Non-artesian springs may simply flow from a higher elevation through the earth to a lower elevation and exit in the form of a spring, using the ground like a drainage pipe.

Still other springs are the result of pressure from an underground source in the earth, in the form of volcanic activity. The result can be water at elevated temperature such as a hot spring.

The action of the groundwater continually dissolves permeable bedrock such as limestone and dolomite creating vast cave systems.

Types of spring outlets

  • Seepage or filtration spring. The term seep refers to springs with small flow rates in which the source water has filtered into permeable earth.
  • Fracture springs, discharge from faults, joints, or fissures in the earth, in which springs have followed a natural course of voids or weaknesses in the bedrock.
  • Tubular springs are essentially water dissolved and create underground channels, basically cave systems.

Spring flow
Spring discharge, or resurgence, is determined by the "spring's" recharge basin. Factors include the size of the area in which groundwater is captured, the amount of precipitation, the size of capture points, and the size of the spring outlet. Water may leak into the underground system from many sources including permeable earth, sinkholes, and losing streams. In some cases entire creeks seemingly disappear as the water sinks into the ground via the stream bed. Grand Gulf State Park in Missouri is an example of an entire creek vanishing into the groundwater system. The water emerges nine miles away, forming some of the discharge of Mammoth Spring in Arkansas.


Springs are often classified by the volume of the water they discharge. The largest springs are called "first-magnitude," defined as meaning they discharge at least 100 cubic feet of water per second (cfs), or about 64.6 million gallons per day (mgd).

The scale for spring flow is as follows:

  • 0 Magnitude - no flow (sites of past/historic flow)
  • 1st Magnitude - > 100 cubic feet per second (cfs)
  • 2nd Magnitude - 10 -100 cfs
  • 3rd Magnitude - 1 - 10 cfs
  • 4th Magnitude - 100 gal/min (gallons per minute) - 1 cfs (448 gal/min)
  • 5th Magnitude - 10 to 100 gal/min
  • 6th Magnitude - 1 to 10 gal/min
  • 7th Magnitude - 1 pint to 1 gal/min
  • 8th Magnitude - Less than 1 pint/min

In order to log this cache, email me the following.

1. Using the scale above, what is the magnitude of Magnetic Spring?

2. From the description above, what type of spring is Magnetic Spring?

Additional Hints (No hints available.)

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