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Old 09-04-2017, 01:02 PM   #1
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Hebgen Lake, Montana Earthquake of August 17, 1959

Events on the night of August 17, 1959- The Human Story

The Hebgen Lake Montana Earthquake of August 17, 1959
Geological Survey Professional Paper 435

"Late on the night of August 17, 1959, southwestern Montana and adjacent areas were shaken by a major earthquake, the fourth within 35 years and the strongest so far recorded in the State. The disturbance centered near Hebgen Lake on the Madison River a few miles north-west of Yellowstone National Park. The magnitude was 7.1, the shock was felt throughout an area of 600,000 square miles and as far as 350 miles from the epicenter."

Why would I want to post this event? This is a reminder that 'bad things' can happen when you least expect. When you are traveling or camping, be prepared for any event, prepared for additional length of stay and understand your surroundings.

This paper is free on the internet. It is very interesting just reading the Foreword and the Human Story (435-A). Most whom died were from landslides and rockfalls. The entire lake subsided 22 feet and changes were measured in an area of 200 square miles.

One landslide in a narrow canyon of the Madison River created a lake 6 miles long and 190 feet deep.

Yellowstone Park is an geologically active area of the western USA. Where there are mountains, hot springs and volcanic activity the possibility of earthquake exist.

This is one of numerous free publications to be found on the internet of similar interest.

When traveling to the Rocky Mountains in particular, always look around your campsite position. We do, as we are rarely in campsites that usually have your safety in mind. Below steep cliffs, areas of large boulders and debris and other easily spotted natural rockfalls is important.

Dead trees weigh TONS. Many can be 100 feet tall and when one falls...the lean of the tree may give you a sense of security, but may be false. Beetle Kill is everywhere in the National Forests. At times we understand the situation, but take our chances like everyone else.

Just become more than a tourist. Think before you set up camp. Understand that nothing may occur on your watch, nor a 100 foot pine tree falls from the forest... but some day, you will be prepared and prevented yourself and family from any harm.

This may seem alarming to those not accustom to risks in the environment. This is only a reminder that our planet is active and our forests do what nature has always done and always will. Humans in the way or not.
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Old 09-06-2017, 11:17 PM   #2
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I drove past Quake Lake twice in the past couple weeks on my trip to the Tetons and Glacier. Stopped at the visitor center that actually is built on top of the rockpile that slid down as a result of the earthquake. Amazing to see. They have a lot of signage telling the story of that night. It was horrific for those involved.
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