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This spruce tree cookie, dated at about 4,300 years old, was recovered from the Hinton area after a nearby creek changed course during flooding, exposing several spruce logs along the newly carved stream bank. The cracking seen in this specimen is actually due to drying after collection. New drying methods (e.g., freeze drying) are being investigated to dry the remaining samples. Counts of the tree rings indicate that this tree was about 200 years old when it died and was deposited. Dendrochronology, the study of tree rings, not only is used to assist in aging trees, but to understand past growing and environmental conditions, to identify events, to calibrate radiocarbon dates, and more. Oh, the wonders of trees!