Honoring September 11…

September 13, 2009

We of course observed a moment or two of reverence on this fateful day of history. Certainly the terrorist acts of 9/11/2001 should never be forgotten nor minimized. But lest we forget our country’s origins, it happens that Native Americans have been dealing with Homeland Security issues big-time since 1492!

On that day this year, we took a day trip to Glacier National Park. Though we’re staying closer to the West entrance, we decided to drive below the park and enter it via the East entrance at St. Mary’s. If you haven’t seen this place, you NEED to see it ere this lifetime expires. It is simply awesome, jaw-dropping drop-dead gorgeous, BEAUTIFUL! And we chose a perfect day for the drive. We drove through the park on the 50-mile “Road to the Sun” (click link to see photo gallery of Glacier) which many say is the most beautiful 50 mile drive anywhere on Earth? We won’t argue. It was amazing. Near the end of our drive, we stopped at Lake McDonald near the Western end, and enjoyed a ranger lecture aboard the DeSmet boat for a one-hour cruise.

It’s very interesting when you study the impact and influence that the railroads had on the building of the West. Glacier, for example, was developed a lot under the aegis of the Great Northern railroad. They developed lodges, and promoted Glacier as a big stop along their northerly line, to promote more tourism on their venue. All over the West, you can see that the land is divided into 1-square mile sections, and railroads like the Great Northern, like the Union Pacific and Central Pacific, often were given alternate sections just for running their roadbeds over the landscape. This is why much of the property is still owned by railroads or their subsidiaries or fiscal descendants.

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