Soennichsen to present at library on April 28

Waucoma Bookstore and the Columbia Gorge Chapter of the Ice Age Floods Institute are hosting author John Soennichsen for an event at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 28, at the Hood River County Library Jeanne Marie Gaulke downstairs meeting room.

Soennichsen will be discussing his guidebook “Washington’s Channeled Scablands: Explore and Recreate along the Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail.” He will also present a slideshow based on his new “where-to” guidebook and travel narrative about Washington’s Channeled Scablands.

The guide offers a comprehensive and intimately knowledgeable tour of this one-of-a-kind region, including fascinating lore, snapshots of the unique towns connected by this singular landscape, descriptions of the unique geology, advice on how to explore, whether by auto, horseback, canoe, bike or on foot; and essential info like where to fuel up and stop for dinner.

The book features seven regional maps and more than 75 photos.

The Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail was designated by the National Park Service in 2009. Once completed, the trail will connect interpretive facilities, signage and other tourism activities.

Often overlooked by those cruising on the highway to Spokane or the Tri-Cities area, more than 2,000 square miles of terrain in eastern Washington are home to a striking collection of sharp-edged coulees slicing through a crust of basalt.

In this stunning landscape, deep lakes fill the depths of dramatic gorges flanked by steep walls of towering rock columns, labyrinthine channels and wide tracts of scabby rock that give the region its name —geologically, no other region in the world contains features like those found in the Channeled Scablands.

Take the family to scenic camping and fishing in Coffeepot Lake, and read out loud the legend of Old West outlaw Harry Tracy as you cruise along on a “Back Roads Auto Tour.” Lace up your boots for a cross-country hike in the Juniper Dunes Wilderness Area or up Badger Mountain Trail. Explore the unearthly crater-like formations in the Telford-Crab Creek Tract, or set up with your camera for a stunning sunrise over Palouse Falls.

Soennichsen is the author of “Live! From Death Valley” and the acclaimed “Bretz’s Flood,” the biography of Harlen Bretz, the first geologist to research the Scablands and propose its creation by massive flooding. He is a member of the Ice Age Floods Institute and lives just outside the eastern Washington town of Cheney, along the rim of a prominent Scabland channel.

About the Columbia Gorge Chapter of the Ice Age Floods Institute

IAFI’s Columbia River Gorge Chapter serves the central and eastern Columbia Gorge area, including The Dalles, Hood River, White Salmon and Stevenson. More information about the chapter is located at:

The Columbia Gorge Chapter of the Ice Age Floods Institute was established in 2007 as the seventh of 10 chapters, to help promote public understanding of the geologic history of the Columbia River Gorge and of the influence of the catastrophic Ice Age floods on the landscape and makeup of the Gorge even to the present day.

Throughout the year it offers expert talks and field trips to IAFI members and the public to explore the fascinating story and much more about the unique geology and background of the Gorge. From its chapter base in White Salmon, the group strives to be a resource covering the entire Columbia River Gorge area from Wallula Gap in the east to Portland in the west.

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