The most awe-inspiring mountains I have ever seen are the ones that reside here. Glacier National Park is celebrating its centennial this year. I love Glacier. I love it. I went there for New Year's Day. Again for my birthday. And now that the road to Logan Pass is open I have begun to venture farther and farther into the park. On my next weekend I hope to travel the full length of Going-to-the-Sun Road. In my recent visits I have found the skies partially filled with low clouds. Or perhaps it is not the clouds that are lying low, perhaps it is the mountains that are so high.
These rocks always strike me a regal. Proud. Maybe even a bit arrogant. But they also speak of the violence of their creation. They were literally carved as the world fell into the last ice age. And though they are melting, remnants of that ice age are still to be found right here in Montana.
The National Parks website describes it thus:
As the ice moves, it plucks rock and debris from the sides and bottom of the valleys. Rocks falling on the glacier from above mix with the glacial ice as well. A glacier is filled with rock and gravel. Over long periods of time the sandpaper-like quality of the moving ice scours and reshapes the land into, broad U-shaped valleys, sharp peaks, and lake filled basins. Massive ancient glaciers grinding over the bedrock below produced the spectacular landforms seen today.
The Park is filled with horns, cirques, arêtes, hanging valleys, and moraines; landforms given special names because they were produced by the action of glaciers.
One of my favorite things to see is the way the clouds interact with the mountains. I love watching the way the wind blows, watching the way the clouds scrape themselves over the rocks separating and reforming themselves. The winds howl like a petulant child and the mountains remain unmoved. It looks like dance sometimes — the clouds and the peaks. And to me, they bring each other to life. Like the mountains are a playground eagerly waiting for recess when the can clouds to come out and play.
These are some of the photos I have made on my last two trips to Glacier. Every time I come to the park I find myself singing the same song; I Will Lift My Eyes, by Bebo Norman.
I will lift my eyes to the maker, of the mountains I can't climb I will lift my eyes to calmer, of the oceans raging wild I will lift my eyes to the healer, of the hurt I hold inside I will lift my eyes, lift my eyes to you
I love this place. Glacier is one of those landscapes in which I cannot help but feel the hand of God. It seems to me these rocks were formed not by the movement of ice but by God Himself sculpting His cathedral. I am always going to be thankful I got the chance to live here. It truly is a wonder.