Staff Reporter 

Ice Age Floods Trail gets promotional boost


Last updated 7/6/2017 at 9:07am

The Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail, which Cheney would some day like to make a tourism attraction, received some notable national exposure.

The trail, which received authorization from Congress in 2009, was featured prominently on the cover of the American Automobile Association’s “Journey Western” member magazine.

The story, which covers four pages in the magazine, is introduced and framed by a dynamic photo of Palouse Falls near Washtucna, Wash. and then goes on to highlight key not-to-be-missed roadside attractions from across the area from Missoula, Mont. to Astoria, Ore., the path traveled by an estimated 90 flood events that ravaged the landscape.

The last two pages provide highlights of the trail as it passes through Montana, Idaho, Washington and Oregon. It provides directions on how to access many of the roadside attractions associated with the trail.

The floods that are responsible for the landscape of our region happened about 15,000 to 18,000 years ago geologists estimate. During the Ice Age, and subsequent building and retreating of glaciers, an ice dam would be created which in turn helped fill massive 2,000 foot deep Lake Missoula in present day Western Montana.

When the ice retreated the floods came, not only carving out the geological features found in Eastern Washington, but bringing with them and leaving behind massive rocks not necessarily native to the area.

A volunteer organization known as the Ice Age Floods Institute has been formed to help promote more interest in the subject, and to some day hopefully convince lawmakers in Washington, D.C. to fully fund formation of the 1,100-mile trail.

A Cheney-Spokane chapter hosts regular tours and events associated with this geologic marvel.


For more information on the Ice Age Floods, visit and click on the chapter tab to learn more about the local organization and its activities.

Paul Delaney can be reached at


Reader Comments


Powered by ROAR Online Publication Software from Lions Light Corporation
© Copyright 2019

Rendered 11/01/2019 12:41