Obsidian Flow

Once we came down from Paulina Peak, we wanted to take a walk through the obsidian flow that we could so plainly see from above. It's estimated that this flow is 1,300 years old - which is just yesterday in geologic time!

Before we got there, however, we made a couple of quick stops.

At the Visitor Center, Terry investigated an
obsidian sample (left) and a "Lava Bomb" (right).
Imagine that falling on your head!
We walked by Paulina Lake and saw these birds.
We couldn't get very close but
we think they are American Coots.
We continued on to the parking area for the obsidian flow. We weren't really sure what to expect, but we didn't expect the edge of the flow to be taller than the trees that it borders!

This was a nice, easy trail, with several very interesting displays along the way. As is obvious, the trail starts with climbing several flights of steps.
The view to the west really shows
how tall the front edge of the obsidian flow was!
Looking to the east, we could see ducks -
or were they coots? - feeding in Lost Lake.
Huge piles of obsidian like this were everywhere.
(No, we did not take any "samples"!)
A non-descript photo of Don,
with Lost Lake in the distance.
Obsidian has long been prized for its ability to be shaped into sharp points such as arrow heads. Even so, we found the story described in this display to be remarkable.

Even though the story is obviously 30 years old, we wonder if it would not still be true today. We're also curious to know how long the obsidian scalpel lasted ...