Katmai Terrane


About This Blog

Bears. Salmon. Volcanoes. Wilderness. Culture. These are the terranes of Katmai. Each is distinct, but in combination these features create a place like no other. Read about the uniqueness of Katmai in this blog.

Notes from the Field: Puzzle Pieces of the Past

July 29, 2017 Posted by: Clint Augustson

Archeology in Katmai is both an art and a science: puzzling over layers of soil to tell stories about the people who once lived here.


A Picture of the Past - Geophysical Imagery of Cultural Resources

October 11, 2016 Posted by: Chloe' Stevens

As technology advances throughout time, archaeology becomes less and less invasive to the surrounding environment. The potential growth of knowledge from these advances is exciting to see.


Witnesses to A Landscape of Contradictions – The Rediscovery Of A 1917 National Geographic Society Expedition Camp

October 02, 2016 Posted by: Laura Stelson

In 2013, a ranger stumbled upon the remnants of a National Geographic Society basecamp in the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes. This summer, 2016, our team of archaeologists returned to the site and found a landscape of contradictions.


Have Spear, Will Travel

March 10, 2014 Posted by: Kathryn Myers

In 1964, George Gryc, then chief of the Alaska Geology Branch of the USGS, visited the geological survey party that was mapping the Iliamna quadrangle, which was then just north of Katmai National Monument. During his visit, the geologists landed on Grosvenor Lake to do some mapping. During their lunch break, Gryc began investigating a sandstone bluff near the edge of the lake, looking for fossils. According to a 1972 letter to the superintendent from Gryc:

“I noticed, rather incidentally, a stick that seemed unusually weathered lying on a ledge. I picked it up and noticed that it was worked. I looked around and after some searching noticed a couple of more similar pieces (shafts) sticking out of a crevice..."


What Does a Bone Needle Say?

February 04, 2014 Posted by: Kathryn Myers

A simple bone needle, broken into four pieces, is perhaps not as exciting to look at as a spear point, an oil lamp, or an incised pebble, but it can tell us as much or more about the lives of the people who used it as any finely worked point or intricately carved pebble can.


Incised Pebbles from the Brooks River Area

January 09, 2014 Posted by: Kathryn Myers

To many, the Brooks River is the heart of Katmai National Park & Preserve. It is also a National Historic Landmark and an Archeological District consisting of 20 different prehistoric sites.

From 2002-2003, working with the Council of Katmai Descendants, NPS archaeologists partially excavated one of these 20 sites in an attempt to answer research questions and learn about the site before sections were lost to erosion. Some of the artifacts found during this excavation were delicately designed incised pebbles.


Last updated: April 14, 2015

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