Reynolds Creek Wildland Fire

Firefighters Responding to Wildland Fire

Date: July 21, 2015 
Contact: Denise Germann, 406 888 5838 

Firefighters and fire-fighting resources are responding to the Reynolds Creek Wildland Fire on the east side of Glacier National Park. The fire is estimated to be approximately 800-1,000 acres.

The fire is moving quickly in heavy timber with extreme spread potential.

The Going-to-the-Sun Road is closed between the St. Mary entrance on the east side and Avalanche on the west side. The road closure is in response to the fire, firefighter and visitor safety, fire response activities, and park personnel priorities. The duration of the road closure is unknown.  

There is no access to any trails or backcountry areas from the Going-to-the-Sun Road at this time. Backcountry visitors are encouraged to contact the park’s backcountry office for more information.   

The Rising Sun Motor Inn, operated by Glacier National Park Lodges, and the Rising Sun Campground were evacuated this evening. Park rangers and personnel are searching for backcountry hikers in the area to evacuate them and direct them to safety. The parking areas of the St. Mary Visitor Center and the Apgar Visitor Center have been established as gathering areas for park visitors that may have been separated from their group. 

All interpretive programs in the St. Mary Valley are cancelled until further notice. There is a temporary flight restriction over the fire area.

A Type II Interagency Incident Command Team has been ordered and should arrive on Wednesday. Resources from Flathead National Forest, Glacier County, East Glacier, Babb, St Mary, and Cutbank, Fire Departments, Blackfeet Fire Management, Montana Department of Natural Resources, Evergreen and West Valley Fire Departments and Flathead County are assisting Glacier National Park. 

A fire information phone line has been established at 406-732-7791.

The fire was first reported at approximately 3:45 p.m. on Tuesday and was located near Grizzly Point, approximately six miles east of Logan Pass. Park dispatch received numerous reports of the fire from shuttle bus drivers, Glacier Boat Company employees, park employees and visitors.

Source: http://www.nps.gov/glac/learn/news/firefighters-responding-to-wildland-fire.htm


Shuttle Service Begins July 1

WEST GLACIER, MONT. – Glacier National Park’s free, optional shuttle system that provides shuttle services along the Going-to-the-Sun Road will begin operations July 1 and run through September 7.

On the west-side of the park, shuttle services begin at the Apgar Visitor Center. Service to all west-side shuttle stop locations begins at 9:00 a.m. with shuttles departing every 15-30 minutes until 7:00 p.m., when the last shuttle leaves Logan Pass.

Prior to 9:00 a.m. there is limited service to some spots on the west-side:
• At 7:00 a.m. and 7:18 a.m. there are express trips from the Apgar Visitor Center straight to Logan Pass, without any intermediate stops, and then continuing on to St. Mary making all regularly scheduled stops.
• At 7:36 a.m. an express shuttle departs the Apgar Visitor Center straight to Logan Pass, where a connection can be made to the St. Mary Shuttle
• At 7:56 a.m. shuttles begin service about every 15-30 minutes from the Apgar Visitor Center, with stops at Avalanche Creek, The Loop, and Logan Pass. This shuttle will not stop at Apgar Village, Apgar Campground, Sprague Creek, or Lake McDonald Lodge.

The St. Mary Visitor Center is the transit hub for shuttle services on the east-side of the park. East-side shuttles begin service at 7:00 a.m. from the visitor center and depart every 40 to 60 minutes. The last shuttles of the day leave Logan Pass for the Apgar Transit Center and St. Mary Visitor Center at 7:00 p.m. For more information on the shuttle system, visit http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/shuttles.htm.
 
For the majority of the summer season, travelers should expect construction activities between Siyeh Bend and St. Mary on the Going-to-the-Sun Road on the east-side of the park. The majority of the work involves paving the 15-mile segment from Siyeh Bend to St. Mary. Many points of interest on the east-side will be difficult to access by private vehicle during construction operations. Shuttle access is recommended for all access points and trailheads along the east-side of the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

There will be no construction work or delays due to roadwork over the 4th of July weekend, Friday through Monday on the east side of the Going-to-the-Sun Road. Following the holiday weekend, road construction will resume seven days a week. Delays will be up to 30 minutes.

Bicyclists must comply with all traffic regulations and must ride under control at all times The following sections of Going-to-the-Sun Road are closed to bicycle use between 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. through Labor Day:
• Eastbound and westbound from the Apgar turnoff to Sprague Creek Campground, and
• Eastbound from Logan Creek to Logan Pass.

Visitors are reminded to be prepared for changing weather conditions throughout the park and use caution around water and snow. Some higher elevation trails in the park still have snow-covered areas. Hikers should exercise caution when walking on snow and be alert of possible collapsible snow and steep slide areas. The Highline Trail is open and the Ptarmigan Tunnel is open to foot traffic. Hidden Lake Overlook Trail still has significant snow-coverage. Current status of all trails within the park is available at http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/trailstatusreports.htm.

For additional questions about Glacier National Park, visit http://www.nps.gov/glac/index.htm or call 406-888-7800

Many Glacier Hotel Centennial

WEST GLACIER, MONT. – The Many Glacier Hotel in Glacier National Park celebrates its 100- year anniversary this year. A celebration is planned for July 4th, but centennial activities will be offered throughout the summer.

Free ranger-led historic walking tours of Many Glacier Hotel will be offered at 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 4:00 p.m. on July 4th. The free tours are also offered daily at 4 p.m. throughout the summer and an exhibit about the hotel is on display. Visitors are encouraged to attend a tour and visit the exhibit to learn about the hotel’s history and restoration.

Beginning at 2:00 p.m. on July 4th, representatives from Glacier National Park, Glacier National Park Lodges, the Glacier National Park Conservancy, and the Glacier Park Foundation will give brief presentations in the St. Moritz Room of the Many Glacier Hotel. Other activities, including music, a ranger talk, and a reminiscent hootenanny are also planned.

Parking is limited in the Many Glacier Hotel area.

For additional questions about Glacier National Park, visit http://www.nps.gov/glac/index.htm or call 406-888-7800.

Reflection

2015-04-19__West Bison__0GSD810-0961.jpg

Image captured 2015-04-19

This location is 10 miles east of my home, most mornings I will not stop here to do any photography as the East Slope of the Rocky Mountains are notoriously famous for being windy. When I say windy I have literally been blown off the road by winds that have exceeded 100mph. So it is very rare to have a calm day such as this. I took quite a few shots this morning with most having just a slight ripple on the water, just enough to ruin the reflection. If you are patient and lucky you will get that one perfect reflection. This location is on the north side of the current railroad tracks and is looking into Glacier National Park. There is an old abandoned Great Northern railroad line back in the distance that cannot be seen from this point. It is great place to walk and view the wildlife, which include lots of elk and moose and I have also seen bear, both Grizzly and Black.

This should be a metaphor for life! 

Snow Geese @ Freezeout Lake

image.jpg

Captured 2015-03-29 

With the mild winter across much of the western United States the Snow Geese did not arrive in the larger numbers that I have seen in past years. I talked with a wildlife biologist who said that there were only 16,000 to 22,000 on any given day. The fact that the weather was not as harsh probably meant they did not need as much rest so they moved in and out of the area fairly quickly. As always this is a viewing experience not to be missed.

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Camera Info/Settings:
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Nikon D810
Nikkor 300mm AF-S f/4D IF/ED  @  300mm
1/800 second exposure @ F4  ISO 800
Medium Gitzo tripod.. 
RAW file processed with Lightroom 5
TIFF file processed with Photoshop CC
No HDR
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St. Nick Sunrise

Captured 2015-03-21

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Camera Info/Settings:
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Nikon D610
Nikkor 24-120mm AF-S f/4G ED VR  @  120mm
1/750-second exposure @ F4  ISO 100
Handheld
RAW file processed with Lightroom 5
Nik Color Efex Pro 4
No HDR
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Owen Sowerwine, Wings, Tails, Tracks, and Trails!

I went on a hike yesterday with a great group who who got together for this event lead by Brian Baxter and hosted by WildMontana.org. We explored and found a great variety of tracks and had great time. Due to the exceptionally high water in this area we were not able to explore the banks of the river and wetlands as we had hoped but still saw lots of interesting wildlife and tracks. Some of the wildlife included this frog, Eagles, Osprey, Ducks, Deer and numerous birds. I am looking forward to doing this again in the near future.

Blastoff

 Snow Geese image from the morning blastoff, between Choteau and Fairfield, MT at Freeze Out Lake. This is a stopping point on their migration north to breed.

Just posted this yesterday online for the first time. This image has been exceptionally well received with over 5000 views in one day on Flickr.com. So far this is my most viewed image of anything I have ever posted.

Here is great info about these birds on Wikipedia for anyone interested in their migration and breeding patterns.  (

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snow_geese

)

Great Horned Owl

Went looking for Snowy Owls today (2013-01-06) in the Mission Valley of the Flathead south of Polson, MT, I got skunked on that but was able to stir up some Great Horned Owls. In all I found three within about a quarter mile of each other. All in all it was great day!

  • >> Camera Info/Settings:
  • - Canon 7D
  • - Canon 70-200mm 1:2.8 L IS @ ??mm
  • - Canon Extender EF 2x II
  • - 1/8-second exposure @ F??
  • - ISO ?
  • - Medium Gitzo tripod.. 
  • - Adobe DNG Converter - 15 to 25% smaller files average.
  • - RAW file processed with Lightroom 4

Wind Shear

January 18, 2008_St. Nick_Winter Scenes_032.jpg

A different view of St. Nick than I posted a few days ago. This I think is even more dramatic as it shows what the wind is doing up higher. 

Apologies for not posting this last night but crappy Wildblue satellite service failed, I wish I had another choice besides satellite. Maybe next year there may be another option in this area.

As always thanks for the views and any comments. Please feel free to criticize if you are so inclined!

  • >> Camera Info/Settings:
  • - Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTI
  • - Canon 70-200mm 1:2.8 L IS @ ??mm
  • - 1/8-second exposure @ F8
  • - ISO 100
  • - Adobe DNG Converter - 15 to 20% smaller files average.
  • - RAW file processed with Lightroom 4
  • - No HDR

The Image Within

I will probably continue with my snow theme for a while as this is all I see this time of the year. I hope everyone enjoys these images. 

Image of the old homesteaders cabin at Luebeck Lake just inside GNP park boundaries. This is very near what is known as False Summit and is about four miles east of Marias Pass which is the continental divide.

  • >> Camera Info/Settings:
  • - Canon 7D
  • - Canon 100-400 1:4.5-5.6 L IS @ 190mm
  • - 1/3200-second exposure @ F5.6
  • - ISO 800
  • - Handheld
  • - RAW file processed with Lightroom 4
  • - PSD file processed with Photoshop CS6