Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Glacier Park's wonders leave lifelong impression and appreciation of the Roosevelts


Lake McDonald  in Glacier Park belongs to all of us, thanks to the national park system and the Roosevelts' push. 

FDR loved the parks as his distant cousin Theodore Roosevelt had.
Here, FDR visits Glacier Park and makes a radio broadcast. 
and news archives

"There is nothing so American as our national parks.  The scenery and wildlife are native.  The fundamental idea behind the parks is native...that the parks belong to the people...."  FDR

Teddy Roosevelt above, said
his love of nature was encouraged
 by naturalist John Muir.

ONE FEELS a swell of pride when entering a national park. For me, it's as close to "church" as I  get, for as I pass the ranger station, I enter hallowed ground.
We here in Montana are lucky to have three national parks within easy driving distance.  Whether exploring Yellowstone to our south, or Grand Teton a bit farther, or heading north, "going to the sun" on the breathtaking highway by the same name in Glacier, we remind ourselves of our good fortune and the foresight of the Roosevelts.
So much beauty awaits in the national parks -- in large and small doses.
 Here, a close-up of algae makes a lovely mosaic on rock .
FRANKLIN Roosevelt's cousin, Theodore Roosevelt --"the conservation president" -- was a champion of the National Park System well beyond his term in office. He doubled the number of sites within the National Park system and enabled future presidents to proclaim historic landmarks through the Antiquities Act of June 8, 1906. This Act allows for structures and historic and scientific objects to be protected under federal ownership.
We appreciate the Roosevelts' vision and that of naturalist John Muir. He guided Teddy Roosevelt into the wilderness of Yosemite, and friends said it marked Teddy for life.

Conservationist John Muir engendered a love of nature in
the common man -- and in presidents. 

OUR NATURALIST friends knew a single day -- or three -- couldn't do justice to a national park. Yet FDR's few hours more than 80 years ago inspired a stirring radio address about Glacier's wonders.
If you only have a couple days, though, savor a national park visit to encourage an encore visit.
The grizzly bear is 
a sight to behold.

Trees, critters, birds, majestic glaciers, waterfalls, redwoods and vistas are a few of the enticements. They impressed Teddy, Muir and FDR as they impress millions today.
IN EVERY visit to Glacier, Teton and Yellowstone, we've been lucky to see bears.  We've watched them hike up hills and munch on grubs and berries, fattening up for the long winter's nap, months away. Once, we watched one unearth a carcass of a long dead mountain goat. The griz feasted on the smelly remains, buried months ago. No doubt, he'd remembered where he hid it.
Photographer Rick Cosgriffe has a field day in Glacier. He visits the park
several times each season, taking photos for his annual Daytime Planner.  
The grizzly has been around for at least 10,000 years. The native people knew them first, and they'd been there thousands of years before European explorers showed up in the late 1800s.
The "westerners" crossed the mountains in search of vast buffalo herds on eastern plains, documenting their observations of the grizzly.
 NATIVE people saw the parks' same wonders that Teddy, FDR, Muir and today's tourists do: rugged peaks, clear waters, abundant animal and bird life, breathtaking geysers and glacial-carved valleys.  May our national parks inspire those who love nature's beauty to protect and preserve it through the generations.
Kateri, a golden eagle injured by a car, is part of the Raptor
Exhibit at the Buffalo Bill Center. Coming soon here.

COMING SOON: We're back from a road trip to Cody, Wyoming, with a store of wonders including the Draper Museum Raptor Exhibit and its live show at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Remember to explore, learn and live and catch us weekends and Wednesdays at www.whereiscookie.com


  1. Edmonton Park AdmirersJune 17, 2015 at 11:54 AM

    Ah, how we love our parks, too. We live in Edmonton, and try to journey south at least every other year to Glacier, then on through beautiful Montana to Yellowstone and Teton, which is truly "Grand." Thank you for this. We will stop to see the raptors in Cody, now that we are to find out about that.

  2. Nebraska Nature DevoteesJune 18, 2015 at 3:29 PM

    Yes, the Roosevelts loved the national parks system, and the outdoors in general. Thank goodness for Teddy or Yellowstone Lake environs would be wall to wall condos and mega-ugly summer "get-aways." And we'd have 20-story hotels around Old Faithful! Nice tribute to visionary leaders.