Archive of: Mountain Echoes



Extending autumn eases passage into winter September Issue 3 2012

Extending autumn eases passage into winter

I’ve been known to manipulate the annual calendar to create more summer and shorten winter. Here’s an idea to lengthen our autumn season, and while it might be stating the obvious to many folks, perhaps by knowing that someone else does this might encourage others to try it themselves.

Rain, rain, go away September Issue 2 2012

Rain, rain, go away

So, like many folks this past Labor Day, I was getting tired of sitting around the house waiting for the weather to improve. Despite wind and rain, I decided to head out into South Fork Valley for a hike. Looking across Eagle River Valley, I could see that the mountains were obscured in clouds and that it was definitely raining.

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.

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