Archive of: Mountain Echoes



The Hills are Alive… with the Sound of Music September Issue 1 2012

The Hills are Alive… with the Sound of Music

If you venture into Eagle River’s South Fork Valley far enough, and often enough, you might think you hear the sound of music echoing off the mountains, perhaps a Symphony or Concerto, accompanied by the gentle strings of a Harp and the wind-like tones of a Calliope. At the very least, you’ll be in the company of peaks and other natural features named after musical instruments and themes.

August Issue 5 2012

Wild about Eagle River

In recent years I haven’t seen as much wildlife in some parts of Chugach State Park as I did 15 or 20 years ago. But I’m not a game biologist and I don’t know enough about wildlife populations to draw any conclusions about their status. I have learned over time that generally, wild animals don’t go where people go. And Alaska has so much space that it’s not hard for the animals to find habitat that’s away from human activity.

NASA success, Olympic triumphs: How can we not be inspired? August Issue 4 2012

NASA success, Olympic triumphs: How can we not be inspired?

After learning by radio that NASA had successfully landed a 2,000-lb. rover on Mars, I quickly turned on the television — not to see the unmanned craft’s first photos — but to see the reaction by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) team in Pasadena, Calif. They were literally bouncing off the ceiling with excitement and jubilation.

Getting squared away on Triangle Peak August Issue 3 2012

Getting squared away on Triangle Peak

The three words that kept rattling around in my head July 25 as I left the shores of Symphony Lake and angled up-slope toward Triangle Peak were “how we forget.”

August Issue 2 2012

Kuskokwim “dream job” was learning experience

Sometimes in life, if we’re extremely lucky, we stumble into the perfect dream job. That was my fortune in 1971 when I landed a job with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and was assigned to the Kuskokwim River—near Sleetmute.

August Issue 1 2012

Part 2 — Evolution of the two-party political system

In the first installment (July 26) we discussed how the two-hemisphere brain is designed and structured to perform a variety of functions. This week we take a look at the two-party political system, how it evolved, and how it might it some way replicate the functioning of the human brain.

July Issue 4 2012

Is our political system a model of the human brain? (Part 1)

College professors are increasingly crossing disciplines in their exams. For example, what if one of them combined the fields of psychology, neurology and political science to create this final exam question: Compare and contrast the two-hemisphere human brain with the American two-party political system.

July Issue 3 2012

The Angel of Procrastination is a thief

For most of us there is just too much to do these days and not enough hours in the day to do them — even with our long, summer days. The shed can get painted next week. Sometime after that we’ll take the broken lawnmower to the repair shop. The car’s oil change can wait.

July Issue 2 2012

Mt. Marathon — maker of champions

Anyone who runs the Seward Mt. Marathon Race in under two hours, or even finishes for that matter, is a champion in my book. I’ve never run the race, but I I’ve been tromping up and over and around the 3,022-foot mountain for nearly 60 years.

July Issue 1 2012

Do bear encounters come down to bad luck?

This summer — if you can call 50-degree temperatures and new snow at the 3,000-foot-level of the mountains on June 13th summer — there seem to be a rash of human-bear encounters that haven’t turned out very well for either the former or the latter. I suppose if we calculated the number of people out on the trails and the amount of area covered, we’d determine that the number of incidents is not that far above an average year.

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