Dozing polar bear, Indianapolis Zoo

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Glacial Recession V

I'm starting to channel the Friday the 13th franchise with my serial glaciering, but this one's the last.

The final day we hiked a bit along the Highline Trail, looking at excellent examples of the U-shaped valleys carved by glaciation and generally just winding down from the day before. Jeff will likely offer the seminar again next summer, and I'll probably go again, as he plans to hike to other glaciers in the park next time.

The entire seminar was just great. I learned a great deal, not just about glaciation and the effects of climate change on the park, but about geology in general. Mr. T was a geologist before he became a bidnessman, but I had always glazed over during discussions of faults and synclines and formations, until I was standing in front of the real thing with someone explaining it to me. I can be a stickler for technicalities, particularly when dealing with terminology (imagine that!), and that was tripping me up a bit. Or rather, I tended to approach geological terminology with an overly literal mindset.

But really, I have to plug the Glacier Institute now. I mentioned to Jeff during class that I thought there was a good chance I'd become an Institute junkie. Just look at all the classes and seminars they offer. I could spend ten months just taking class after class, and I'd never get bored. The neat thing is that many classes allow kids as young as six to attend. So I think The Kid and I might take some seminars together in the coming years.

Finally, there are a slew of crevasse photos in my photostream here. (There are a few mountain goat shots in there, but the bulk of it is the Grinnell Glacier.) Perhaps you'll be able to get a sense from those images how unnerving it is to be hiking around them.

And sometimes, unnerving is good.

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