Sunday, July 31, 2016

Glacier NP: Hose Tower at West Glacier

Fighting fires is a fact of life in Western forests, and Glacier has seen some big fires, even in the recent past. Drying fire hose is part of clean-up maintenance. This massive tower is in a ravine at park headquarters next to the park's large fire fighting complex.

A walking tour on PDF includes the tower. It was built by the CCC in 1933 and is still used today

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Glacier NP: Sedimentary Rock Stratification Illustrated Seen Above Avalanche Lake

Most of the rock in Glacier NP is sedimentary, laid down in increments measured by tiny factions of an inch per year at the bottom of an ancient sea. It is hard to describe, and most photos don't do justice to, the depth of the layers and the geologic forces at work here that continue to lift and tip the rock.

This set of tipped shelves illustrates the extreme effects of geologic forces. Seen here is melt water from Sperry Glacier above Avalanche Lake.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Glacier NP: Classic U-shaped Valley

The long valley leading south-west from Logan Pass to Lake McDonald and West Glacier is a perfect illustration of the power of deep glaciers that shaped the modern terrain.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Glacier NP: Historic Boats

Beautiful historic wooden boats take visitors across six major lakes in Glacier NP and Waterton Lakes NP in Canada: Two Medicine Lake, Saint Mary Lake, Swiftcurrent Lake, Lake Josephine, McDonald Lake, and Upper Waterton Lake in Alberta.

This is Sinopah, built in 1926 and the oldest boat of the Glacier Park Boat Company's fleet, on Two Medicine Lake.

Glacier Park Boat Company began in 1938 and has been operated by the Burch family since. They acquired some boats from an earlier builder and entrepreneur, and built others themselves. There are boathouses at each lake where the boats are stored over the winter and receive spring and fall maintenance.

"It is of historic note that most of the boat houses build for these tour boats were designed and constructed with the specific boat in mind. Each fall, these boats are lifted on a cradle and track system and moved into the boat house. The doors are then closed tightly for protection from the winter months. Every spring we come back to do it all over again in the spirit of those boat men and women who got it all started." [From the History section of the highlighted link above.]