Quake Lake

Quake Lake

Some time back, while I was living in Montana, there was a large earthquake centered near Yellowstone Park.  The earthquake was so severe that it stopped the flow of the Madison River.  Where the river was dammed up later became known as Quake Lake.

The night the earthquake happened, miles and miles away from the quake center, kitty corner across the state, in a dog kennel about ¼ mile away from our house, the dogs began to howl terribly.

Meanwhile, that night, my wife Becky had gone to bed and I was sitting up late reading.  Our mobile home began to rock back and forth from side to side.  I thought it was some cow rubbing herself on the side of the mobile home.  I got up and opened the front door.  The door opened outward, and the first thing I noticed was the bright full moon.  The second thing I noticed was that the outer edge of the open door bottom was almost touching the ground with each rocking motion.

I heard a sound from our next door neighbor’s house.  It was the wife laughing hysterically.  I called out; “Mildred, what’s the matter?”

She said her husband, a foreman on a lineman crew, was rolling back and forth across the bed, but remained sound asleep.  He didn’t wake up, and didn’t know about the earthquake until morning.

The next morning when I went to work, the fellow I worked with told me that his father who owned a tire shop had been holding a late night meeting with some local business men.  After the quake they closed the meeting.  He went home, got his shot gun, and patrolled the street for some time.  I don’t know who or what he planned to shoot, but it is interesting to see how some people will panic.

One of the neighbors had a house built on a cement slab floor.  The slab had been badly cracked from the upheaval.

Later, a more familiar weather phenomenon for Montana – a hail storm, came through town with high winds.  It did much more damage than the quake.