Erratic Shore

The story of Wallowa Lake is the story of boulders, mostly granite boulders which the thirteen mile long Wallowa River Glacier transported out of the Wallowa Mountains during the last major glaciation and deposited at the glacier's terminus in and just south of the present-day town of Joseph. Nez Perce Indians referred to the boulder-strewn ground occupied by Joseph as "Hah Um Sah Pah" or "Place where many rocks lie scattered about." Today, the semi-circle of immense ridges containing Wallowa Lake are composed entirely of the boulders that were piled high during a lengthy pause (ending about 17,000 years ago according to recent evidence from a geologist) in the glacier's retreat. Photographed on 4x5.

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