Bob Marshall Wilderness Backpacking Trip 2012

This is a collection of a few photos I took on my backpacking trip through the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area in Montana last month. I tried to include a variety of different shots, so y’all weren’t overloaded with mountain spam (though I’d hate to find a single person in the world who hates mountains…)

We traveled approximately 35 miles in 4 days. Our original plan was to enter at Benchmark just outside of Augusta, MT and travel across White River Pass and Gordon Pass to Holland Lake in about 7 days. The trip would have been 70 miles. Unfortunately, the West Fork of the Sun River was still flowing too high and swift for us to cross safely. Instead, we set up base camp at Indian Point and spent a day hiking to 8,880 feet up to the Prairie Reef Lookout.

I highly recommend the Bob Marshall to anyone in Montana interested in seeing some amazing backcountry scenery!

Magnitude 3.2 quake shakes Seeley Lake, Ovando

By Rob Chaney of the Missoulian

A small earthquake rocked houses from Seeley Lake to Ovando just after 10 p.m. Sunday, according to U.S. Geological Survey data.

The earthquake had two shockwaves, according to Mike Stickney at the USGS office in Butte. The foreshock measured magnitude 3.1, while the second arrived 25 seconds later with a 3.7 magnitude. Both quakes were centered between Black and Alloy mountains in the Bob Marshall Wilderness, about 21 miles northeast of Seeley Lake. Their epicenter was nine miles beneath the Earth’s surface.

Brad Weltzien said his family felt the bump at their house just south of Seeley Lake.

“It was real quick – like one huge blast of wind, but it was still as can be last night,” Weltzien said. “You could hear lots of cracks from the house, but it didn’t move anything. We didn’t feel it shake so much as hear the house make noise.”

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks biologist Jay Kolbe was camped within a mile of the epicenter on Sunday in the Danaher Meadows area, close to the headwaters of the South Fork Flathead River. He was back in Seeley Lake Sunday evening and didn’t feel the quake. But he said the area looked prime for earthquake activity.

“It’s pretty tortured country,” Kolbe said. “There are some slides along the Dry Fork and North Fork of the Blackfoot. I don’t know if they’re seismic-related, but the whole Bob is that overthrust geology. It’s not as dramatic as on the east front, but it’s beautiful.”

Stickney said the area has recorded a lot of small quakes over the past decade.

“It’s part of the Overthrust Belt, and then it was cut up by later, younger faults,” he said. “There’s some spectacular geology back there.”

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I actually felt this earthquake. At first I thought I might have been dreaming. It sounded like extremely loud thunder for a few seconds and then the ground began to shake. We were probably 10 miles from the epicenter when it happened.

(Source: missoulian.com)

Home…

Despite the fact that summer seems to have finally arrived to Montana in my absence, and the heat has kicked off the fire season of 2012, the rivers in the Bob Marshall were too deep and fast to cross safely with a 55 lb pack. Apparently the snow in the surrounding mountains is only just deciding to melt.

Our trip may have been cut short, but we still got quite a few miles in and saw some of the most beautiful scenery Montana has to offer.

Photos to follow shortly.

Bob Marshall Wilderness - Montana

Bob Marshall Wilderness - Montana

Beartop Lookout - Bob Marshall Wilderness Area, Montana
“The  Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex consist of the Bob Marshall,  Scapegoat, and Great Bear Wilderness areas. As a wilderness area no   motorized or mechanical equipment including bicycles are allowed. That  is to say travel is by foot, or horseback. The  area consist of about 2 million acres of land. It is located in North  West Montana and boarders Glacier National Park. Commonly called the  “BOB” it is prime Grizzly Bear habitat and has the largest population of Grizzly in the lower 48.”
(Photo and excerpt from: Walk the Bob)

Beartop Lookout - Bob Marshall Wilderness Area, Montana

The Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex consist of the Bob Marshall, Scapegoat, and Great Bear Wilderness areas. As a wilderness area no  motorized or mechanical equipment including bicycles are allowed. That is to say travel is by foot, or horseback. The area consist of about 2 million acres of land. It is located in North West Montana and boarders Glacier National Park. Commonly called the “BOB” it is prime Grizzly Bear habitat and has the largest population of Grizzly in the lower 48.”

(Photo and excerpt from: Walk the Bob)

Trying to convince a friend to help plan a 50 mile backpacking trip through the Bob Marshall Wilderness for this summer.

Wish me luck!

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