Thursday, April 18, 2024

Winter Speaker Series topics cover Glacier's ancient history and grizzlies

| February 22, 2024 12:00 AM

Archeologist Brent Rowley and Glacier National Park Ranger Stephen Blados will present Feb. 26 and March 25, respectively, as part of the Glacier National Park Volunteer Associates Winter Speaker Series.

Rowley’s presentation, “Ancient Glacier: A Cultural and Environmental History of the Last 15,000 Years,” will be an overview of human and environmental interactions in the national park.

Since the end of the last Ice Age, what is now Glacier National Park has seen

tremendous cultural and environmental change — the establishment of indigenous

peoples’ homelands, the die-off of the Pleistocene megafauna, the rise of the bison, the

rise of bison hunting cultures, and the introduction of industrial resource extraction

technologies in the19th century. 

For the past four years, Rowley has researched the interaction of bison and people in what is now Glacier National Park from the late Pleistocene to 1884, when bison were extirpated, based on archeological data and paleo-environmental surveys of ice patches and sedimentary environments over the past four years.

Rowley has worked as an archeologist in Glacier National Park for 11 years. Before that, he worked for the  U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management and the University of Montana. He studied environmental science at Shepherd University and received a master’s degree in anthropology from the University of Montana with a focus on archeology.

Blados, who is a seasonal ranger in the West Lakes District, will present on “Grizzly Bears: Past, Present and Future.”

Blados, who also works as a paramedic for Three Rivers EMS in Columbia Falls and Logan Health EMS in Babb, graduated from Eastern Oregon University with a bachelor’s degree in biology and psychology. He received his master’s degree in environmental science education from Concordia University. He teaches courses for Eastern Oregon University and was previously an adjunct faculty member at Idaho State University and Concordia University.

Both presentations start at 7 p.m. at the Northwest Montana History Museum, 124 Second Ave.  E., Kalispell. There is no cost to attend.