retired guy pulls old Montana work pictures from his youth out of storage and
puts them on the web
|For years, my family has refused
to watch my "Montana slides". They only saw them 3 or 4
times. Well, perhaps more. Now, thanks to technology, I've
scanned my 35mm Montana slides into digital files, put them on the web, and I can inflict
these slides on the whole world.
These slides were taken by me during the summers of 1957 and 1958
when I worked for the US Forestry Service in the Kootenai (pronounced
"kootney") National Forest of far northwest Montana.
Working in the beautiful mountainous forest in remote areas was
enjoyable. I recently found a letter I wrote to my late father telling him
"I can't believe they're paying me to do this".
There's a guest book at the bottom. Let me know if you looked
at the pics and what you thought of them..
NOTE: Click on the pictures for enlarged
In 1957, I applied for and obtained summer work on
logging road/fire access road survey crews in the Kootenai National Forest.
picture was taken on the way to field work. It was a rainy
morning, and the sun broke through on the Yaak River.
pic is worth enlarging, so go ahead and double click on it.
|On another trip to a
field site, some deer were spotted, again while traveling alongside the Yaak
This spot is about 10 miles from the Canadian border in
|Some treks to our work
sites from our Chevy
Suburban took us over burned out areas.
|Though the treks to work
sites became longer as we surveyed deeper into the woods from the main
roads, it took us through beautiful areas.
|On this area of work
assignment, we had to cross the Yaak River twice daily to get to our
survey line. In one place we
were fortunate to find a fallen tree as a footbridge. We
weren't always so lucky.
|Tom Tiano of Santa Fe,
NM, takes his turn crossing.
The members of the survey crews were 95% or more college students.
| Tom spots movement
through the trees.
One day we heard a very loud noise
crashing and rumbling through the woods. Big rocks rolled
downhill as the thundering steps faded into the distance.
"What was THAT?!" We all stood there bug
"Dunno! But I'm sure glad it was going the
other direction!" We all vigorously agreed.
|In this wilderness area
about 2 miles from the
Canadian border, we had to hike 3 1/2 hours in, work 2 or 3, and
hike 3 1/2 back.
The fallen trees over this Yaak tributary kept us from
wading through swift, cold water.
|Left to right: Tom Tiano,
Ray Pruitt, and Jon Lindsay of New Mexico. Vern Lang of
Florida on right.
We surveyed paths through the forest 200 feet wide, to the left and
right of the stakes. The surveys provided data for building future logging
way!" "No, thata away!" Ray, a
local guy, is recording "Thisa way" and "No, thata
way" data in the cross-section book (project ledger) while in a prone position.
|Four of the 5 man
crew. L to R: Jon Lindsay, Vern Lang, me, and Ray Pruitt. The fifth member,
Tom Tiano, took the picture.
Updated: April 1, 2013