Geology of Waterton National Park
July 12, 2007.
We are staying in the campground at The Great Canadian Barn Dance in Hillspring, Alberta. The campground is a PPA park $12.50 weekdays with no discount on weekends thus $25 for 30-amps and water. We located this place 6-years ago and had a good time at the Barn Dance, this time we decided to stay at their campground. These are great people. If you are looking for the Great Canadian Barn Dance and Campground it is located at: N49° 20.635' W113° 36.972' for those of you not into GPS drive 14-miles south of Pincher Creek on PH 6, then turn east on PR 505 and go another 14-mles where you will see the signs for the Great Canadian Barn Dance. Turn north on that road the Great Canadian Barn Dance will be less than 3-miles up that road on the west side.
For those of you that are not familiar with PPA (Pass Port America) it is an organization you can join for less than $50 per-year. Campgrounds that belong to PPA offer 1/2 price discounts. That kind of savings can quickly add up. While participating PPA parks generally have some restrictions on dates the PPA offer is valid, or possibly days of the week the discount is valid, or perhaps the number of days that the PPA discount will be honored the discount is genuine. Many times PPA campgrounds are new campgrounds that need help in getting established. Other times PPA campgrounds may be on the outskirts of town instead of in the "prime" location thus they need to provide an incentive for campers to stay with them. Whatever the reason PPA campgrounds generally provide a much cheaper option. PPA is the only campground organization that I think is worth the cost. PPA does not have a gimic. What you see is what you get. Once you join they send you a directory listing all participating campgrounds. The PPA directory is the FIRST directory we check when trying to locate a place to spend the night. You can join PPA by calling 228-452-9972. If you decide to join PPA, it would be nice if you gave them my number "R-0156251" as the PPA member that told you about PPA. In return PPA will give me a $10 credit toward next years membership fee. I will thank you in advance for that kindness. Thank you.
Front Range mountains entrance to Waterton National Park
The tilted layers of sediments in this block identify these mountains as part of the Front Range.
Waterton National Park
My eyes were drawn to this avalanche/rock slide. The pattern is intriguing.
Lower Waterton Lakes
The Lower Waterton Lakes occupy part of a huge trough which extends from the Waterton River Bridge to the Waterton townsite. This depression was formed during the last ice age when a block of ice, which broke away from the main Waterton Glacier, became stationary.
The surrounding active glaciers continued depositing glacial till against the ice block until the ice age ended some 12,000 years ago, leaving this depression.
this depression is known as a kettle,
as in a depression left in a mass of glacial drift, formed by the melting of an
isolated block of glacial ice.
Waterton National Park
This is a section that was created by that huge block of ice. The material on this side of the lake is the glacial till that was pushed up against the large block of ice by other glaciers.
This is a kettle lake in geology lingo.
Glaciers shaped this valley, long noted for its spectacular setting, mild climate and abundant wildlife.
Waterton National Park
A number of rock slides can be seen on the face of this mountain. Note that the sedimentary layers are laying fairly flat generally indicating that the mountain is part of the Main Range of the Rockies.
Waterton National Park Geology
Our enjoyment of this landscape represents only an instant in the millions of years it has been in the making. 350 million years ago this region was at the bottom of a warm sea. Then around 70-million years ago compressed sediments from that sea were raised up, fractured and deformed -- and pushed nearly 35-miles out onto the younger bedrock of the prairie, creating the abrupt contrast that characterizes the area today.
While the mountain in the background has relatively level layers of sediments notice how contorted the rock layers are on the nearby formation. The sedimentary layers in this section of rock are bent in a variety of directions. All of this bending and breaking was done as one plate rode up over the other plate.
Geology in Waterton National Park
Rock slides grace the glacier carved face of this mountain. I particularly like the gentile curvature of the layers of sedimentary rock.
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Until next time remember how good life is.