Project Jukebox

Digital Branch of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Oral History Program
Bob White, Part 1

Bob White was interviewed on August 7, 2010 by Rachel Mason, Karen Brewster, and Shannon Kovac at his gun shop in Seward, Alaska. At the time of the interview, he owned his own floor covering business and a gun shop. He is married to the daughter of Val and Jean Anderson. In this interview, Bob talks about his family background, commercial fishing, hunting, changes in Seward, and changes in wildlife populations. He talks about hunting, trapping, dogmushing, snowmachining, and using horses in the Exit Glacier area, cabins and airstrips, the stranded bulldozer up Resurrection River, the road to the glacier, changes to the river and glacier, and his thoughts about establishment of Kenai Fjords National Park.

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Digital Asset Information

Archive #: Oral History 2010-05-12_PT.1

Project: Exit Glacier, Kenai Fjords National Park
Date of Interview: Aug 7, 2010
Narrator(s): Bob White
Interviewer(s): Rachel Mason, Karen Brewster
Transcriber: Carol McCue
People Present: Shannon Kovac
Location of Interview:
Funding Partners:
National Park Service
Alternate Transcripts
There is no alternate transcript for this interview.
Slideshow
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Sections

Coming to Alaska

Growing up in Michigan and early hunting experiences

Parents and siblings

Working as a commercial fisherman

His first hunting experience in Alaska

Settling in Seward, Alaska

Changes in Seward after the 1964 Earthquake

Working at cannery, trapping, and commercial fishing

Meeting his wife

Getting into construction work

Trapping

Moose hunting up the Resurrection River valley

Marking cabin site on the map

Taylorcraft airstrip

Moose hunting up the Resurrection River

Bulldozer at Upper Russian Lake

Airstrip in front of Exit Glacier

Bear hunting

Bear safety and running into trail consruction crew

Use of horses on hunting trips

Marking cabins sites on the map

Goat hunting

Recreational horseback riding and winter riding

Flooding threats from the Resurrection River

Changes in the glacier and criticism of signage showing the glacier's location through time

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Transcript

RACHEL MASON: Well, it is August 7th, 2010, and we're in Seward, Alaska, at the shop of Bob White.

My name's Rachel Mason, and with me here are Karen Brewster and Shannon Kovac, and we're working on the Exit Glacier traditional activities project.

So, Bob, you -- you have -- how long have you been here in this area?

BOB WHITE: Since '72.

RACHEL MASON: Since '72? Did you come here with your parents or --

BOB WHITE: No, I came here on my own. I was 18.

RACHEL MASON: Oh, okay.

BOB WHITE: Yeah.

RACHEL MASON: And what brought you here?

BOB WHITE: You know, Alaska in general. We started getting the Alaska Sportsman, which is the predecessor to the Alaska Magazine, in about 1960, so I was 7 then.

And I started reading that, and reading the stories.

And my aunt and uncle and my cousins came to Alaska right after the earthquake for -- for the summer, spent a summer up here that -- that year.

Had quite an adventure over the bumpy roads and all that stuff.

And they came back and they had cases of, you know, canned salmon and they had cured king salmon eggs, and they were just immense compared to, you know, the perch and bluegill eggs that we saw in Michigan which were almost microscopic.

And we said, holy cow, they are like basketballs.

And my mom's uncle lived around several -- several different places in Alaska.

Anchorage, he got involved out in Bethel with a bunch of building out there. He was in the Carpenters Union.

And so he traveled a good bit around Alaska. And he came back for a visit, I think I was about 11 then, and he wasn't much of a hunter, but you know, he had extensive family, he had a lot of kids up here.

And I'm trying to think, there was, like, 26 or something like that all together.

RACHEL MASON: Wow.

BOB WHITE: Yeah, he had five different wives, and he was -- he was a busy fellow.

RACHEL MASON: A busy man.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. But you know, he had some advice when I talked to him, when I was 11, and I started to formulate a plan to move to Alaska about then.

RACHEL MASON: You were from Michigan?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Uh hum. Yeah.

RACHEL MASON: Did you do any hunting before you came up to Alaska?

BOB WHITE: Oh, yeah. I hunted three different years in Canada.

I hunted -- the last year I hunted in Canada was in '71, so '69, '70, and '71 we hunted a moose in Ontario.

And we fished a lot. Hunted a lot.

We had, you know, the back forty behind the house, we chased down rabbits and trapped and all kinds of -- of course, a huge lake right there, too, so we were fishing all the time, so...

KAREN BREWSTER: So where in Michigan were you from?

BOB WHITE: Houghton Lake, which is Northern Lower Peninsula, it's about a hundred miles south of the bridge.

KAREN BREWSTER: So you grew up in a fairly rural area?

BOB WHITE: Oh, yeah, very rural, a lot of fishing, a lot of hunting.

KAREN BREWSTER: What did your parents do?

BOB WHITE: Dad worked for construction on the roads for a while when I was little, and then he got a job at a fuel company, and he did a lot of, oh, furnace installations, things like that, for propane setups.

And then, oh, just before I got out of high school he started being in the construction business, and actually, I was just getting into high school when that started.

He did a lot of that on the side anyway. The company he worked for, he did all their construction, so if they needed a shop or anything remodeled, he was the one that did it.

And I got roped into doing a lot of shingles when I was 13, 14 years old, so that was -- that was my job.

He'd take me to the job, dump me out, and say, "There's the roof, get it done." And he'd leave.

KAREN BREWSTER: And do you have brothers and sisters?

BOB WHITE: I have a brother in Florida, brother in Indiana, and a sister in Houghton Lake, still.

She's actually in the community of Prudenville, which is all part of the same community.

RACHEL MASON: Oh. So what was your plan when you came to Alaska? Were you -- did you find work, or --

BOB WHITE: Well, the plan was to go to hunting and fishing, and I've been working my tail off ever since.

But no, I -- I had a job lined up when I came, I had a aunt and uncle and some cousins in Anchorage, and my uncle had bought a halibut boat.

And it was a very iffy proposition in '72. There just wasn't -- you know, the resource wasn't there in '72.

So it was a pretty restricted -- you had to scratch to get any amount of fish.

And I fished with him for a year, wound up with -- wound up with 300 bucks and a pickup truck and a boat.

KAREN BREWSTER: That's pretty good. RACHEL MASON: Doing pretty good.

BOB WHITE: Well, the boat needed a lot of work. In fact, it's -- I had to put an engine in it, build a house on it, and get it ready to float, which I had no concept of how to do all that, but I did it anyway.

KAREN BREWSTER: And where were you fishing out of?

BOB WHITE: I fished right here in Seward. Well, we fished out of Homer to start with, and we made a trip around -- we fished over there, kind of got our sea legs under us a little bit, and learned how to operate the boat and whatnot, and tried not to get killed.

And it was a pretty iffy boat. It was several layers of Seran Wrap over a steel frame. It was a rusty old boat.

And had some pretty interesting episodes of it leaking and steering loss and engine failures, and all kinds of fun stuff.

RACHEL MASON: How did the truck run?

BOB WHITE: Oh, the truck was actually pretty good. My uncle was a -- was a crack mechanic. He could make anything run.

And he could find it in the ditch, a rusty old piece of junk, and have it up and running within, you know, a few hours, most of the time.

And he was -- he was a wizard, he really was a phenomenal mechanic, but he wouldn't apply himself to that. And...

KAREN BREWSTER: You mentioned how there was fewer halibut then, or was it the quota permit system was different? Or --

BOB WHITE: No, it was open season. It started in the first of May, and it went to the end of September, and they never met -- and they never caught the quota.

A lot less boats fishing it. The bigger commercial union boats typically, they -- they had -- would catch the bulk of it.

My little boat, I fished out here in the bay, and I had a market for gray cod at the time, and that was my dominant fish; and when I got a halibut, it was a bonus.

When the big boats would come in, of course, they'd bring their gear with them, they would go to port, then I'd start catching halibut, the fish could actually make it into the bay then.

And the efficiency and the volume of fish, and the efficiency of what they were running out there, you have 7, 8, 10 boats out there basically setting fences up, and the halibut would come across it and they would catch virtually everything.

So you'd catch fish once in awhile, but when they come in to do their deliveries, they used a -- a slightly different system, they were union, so what they would do is they would stay in port for half a day for every day they fished.

So if they were out for 20 days, they'd be in port for 10.

And it was kind of part of what strangled us off that first year with my uncle because we got over in the Sound , and Icicle or Seward Fish was running tenders in the Sound for the small boats to fish over there for halibut.

Got over there and kept waiting for the tender to show up, because they had a tender schedule and everything, and they never showed up.

So we're sitting over there out of fuel, a load of fish, and eating bait and ice.

And we finally got a hold of somebody in Cordova, and they called Seward Fish and said, hey, you got a boat anchored up out there, they can't make it to town, no -- no fuel, you know.

So the guy came over, gave us some fuel, we made it back to town, and they took our fish, but then they wouldn't give us any bait.

They'd give us ice to travel, they said, no, you've got to -- you've been out for two weeks, you've got to stay in town for a week.

Well, you know, weather conditions and stuff with the small boat, you just couldn't do that.

And so we wound up getting some ice for ballast, they'd give us that, and my uncle ran into Anchorage and bought some bait and came back down, loaded a pile of bait in the back of a Volkswagon Bug.

KAREN BREWSTER: That would be a nice trip.

BOB WHITE: Luckily, it stayed frozen. A lot of stinky herring.

RACHEL MASON: What was the first hunting you did in Alaska? Did you ever get to do it that first year?

BOB WHITE: You know, I -- I hunted seals a lot that year.

RACHEL MASON: Really?

BOB WHITE: I couldn't hit the darn things, but I hunted them a lot.

That was probably about the only real hunting I did that year other than shoot some rabbits and -- and what not.

Did go chasing moose, but looking back on it, I'm not sure whether the season was open or not.

They had a late season. They had a November season, but getting your -- if people have problems with that today, the regulations are such that, you know, you just about have to have a lawyer in your pocket to figure it out.

You know, one of those kind of things.

RACHEL MASON: Or have a lawyer on retainer.

BOB WHITE: Yeah, it's -- you know, it's not bad when you break it down, but a lot of people have problems doing that, which I did, too, so...

KAREN BREWSTER: So why did you decide to settle in Seward?

BOB WHITE: Well, I lived in Anchorage a little bit, and I didn't like that.

And my aunt and uncle moved to Kodiak that year, and I wound up hauling their -- their stuff to Homer to catch the ferry.

Which was a -- kind of an eventful trip because they converted a Volkswagon van into a trailer.

And it had a trailer plate on it, which caught the attention of every darn Trooper between Anchorage and Homer.

Yeah. We got stopped, I think, three or four times over that.

And my uncle had put -- locked the van. I didn't have a key to it, and the title's on the wind -- up on the visor, it's, like, I didn't even know it was there.

It was, like, oh, where is the visor at, you know, where is the title at.

I said I don't know where the title is, but you know, there's no engine, pull open the gate, and they'd look and they'd scratch their heads, and they would talk to somebody on the radio, and finally they let me go.

I got stopped before we even got out of Anchorage. Yeah. Got stopped in Girdwood, got stopped in Cooper Landing, got stopped in Soldotna, and I think I got stopped just outside of Homer.

And I'd picked up a hitchhiker on the way, and -- and we hit it off fairly well, and then -- then he took advantage of my resources and then we split up.

And I was actually hunting for him when -- when I bumped into another fellow, and so I wound up living in Girdwood for a while.

And then we were -- he was squatting. I didn't know it.

He was squatting in a cabin there, and the owner showed up and said, yeah, get out of here. Okay. So we -- eh, let's go to Seward.

So we came to Seward. And at that time, the sawmill had closed down out of Bear Lake, and it moved into town a couple years previous, around 1970, somewhere in there, it had moved into -- around the port.

And so there was a lot of empty houses out there that were occupied by a lot of people who didn't own them. Yeah. Mostly shacks.

RACHEL MASON: Like a squatter?

BOB WHITE: Yeah, people were just squatting.

Some of the buildings disappeared, they tore them apart and hauled them away and built houses other places --

RACHEL MASON: Wow.

BOB WHITE: -- with them. Yeah. And there was a lot of -- yeah, there was a lot of kind of indigent hippie type people running around just living here, living there, not paying rent, and the city had a lot of problems with that back then.

There was a lot of empty houses in Seward at that time. Old derelict houses.

RACHEL MASON: How come all the houses were all empty?

BOB WHITE: Nobody lived here. People moved away. Well, see, after the earthquake --

RACHEL MASON: Oh, yeah.

BOB WHITE: -- after the earthquake, the jobs went away. I mean, this was -- this was the port in Alaska. Everything that went into -- into Interior Alaska came through Seward.

I mean, it was literally hundreds of longshoremen, and everything was loose stow. There was nothing in a container.

When a ship came in, it was bags of cement, it was boards, it was boxes of groceries, boxes of booze, you name it, it was all loose stowed in the belly of the ship, and they were the old Liberty ships they used during World War II.

And, my father-in-law , he was one of the guys that was handling a bunch of that stuff after the war, and it took a lot of guys, usually.

You have a ship show up with, you know, 4,000, 5,000 tons of product in it, you know, i.e., bags of cement 60 feet deep, you know, from the top of the hatch clear to the bottom.

And you go in there and you pick each bag up, you put it on a pallet, or a board, they would swing it over, set it in a buggy, by hand push the buggy over to the railcar,

and by hand, load it off that and loose stow it again in a railcar to send it somewhere.

And the same thing with lumber. It was just -- it was just a bunch of boards in there. Nothing was bundled, nothing was banded, it was just boards.

And it was all stacked in there, and they'd go down there and pick out all the boards and sort them out to the lengths they were supposed to be, take them over and they'd load them on the car, so it was, you know, very, very labor intensive activity.

Groceries, the same. All that stuff. All loose.

RACHEL MASON: So did that system end after the earthquake, or what?

BOB WHITE: You know, the containerized shipments started not long after the earthquake.

RACHEL MASON: Oh.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Yeah. The connex type system came into being in the probably the mid '60s.

So -- but the Port of Anchorage was the political center, Anchorage was the political center, so when the -- everything started to get rebuilt, the Port of Anchorage was the -- was -- got the money, got the attention, and the Port of Seward was -- lagged for quite some time on that.

So it wasn't -- it was pretty starvation around here. Guys that were in the unions would -- were barely able to make enough money to feed their families, and that sort of thing. And pretty hard scrabble.

RACHEL MASON: Yeah. Had Seward been rebuilt by the time you got here?

BOB WHITE: No. There was still a lot of stuff that was, you know, just shacks sitting that people had just walked away from. Yeah. There was a lot of that.

RACHEL MASON: Yeah. Kind of an interesting time to -- to show up here.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. I mean, there's -- you know, I mean, you look at cycles and history and whatnot, the -- let's see, the second house I rented, after I got married, we were paying 160 a month for rent -- for rent. It cost about 50 a month to heat it.

RACHEL MASON: Really?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. And lights was about $30, with garbage.

RACHEL MASON: Those were the days.

BOB WHITE: And -- but those houses when they were built were only -- I think they were on the market at, like, 45 , $4600, and nobody bought them.

RACHEL MASON: Wow.

BOB WHITE: So there was a group of moneyed individuals in town that got together and bought them up, and then they turned them into rentals.

But they -- they paid around 3500 each for them.

KAREN BREWSTER: So you ended up here in Seward kind of on a lark, and then did you keep fishing or what did you start doing?

BOB WHITE: Well, I worked the cannery that winter, between that and a little bit of trapping. When the cannery got going, I kind of -- the trapping ceased, and just stayed with that because I was getting, you know, 16, 18 hours a day, every day.

And we were processing crab and -- and shrimp. Predominantly crab.

I forget how many millions of pounds we processed each year, but it was -- I think a couple of months we got into close to two and a half million pounds.

So it was pretty impressive. Did that until spring.

Bought some pieces and parts for the boat, and got -- got it up and running. And started fishing out of here in '73 on my own.

And then fished '73 and '74, cannery work again the next winter.

And then '74, somebody swiped my gear off the grounds out there, and I gave up the -- the idea.

And then it wasn't a very lucrative business for -- for raising a family and that sort of thing.

RACHEL MASON: That was halibut fishing you were doing?

BOB WHITE: Yeah, it was halibut -- predominantly gray cod.

RACHEL MASON: Yeah.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. I was getting 18 cents a pound for gray cod at the time.

KAREN BREWSTER: What's the market for gray cod? How is that used?

BOB WHITE: Gray cod, they used it for bait predominately back then, mostly for crab bait.

And I was getting -- for headed and gutted, so they were cleaned fish, and I was getting 18 cents a pound for them.

We were getting about 70 cents for halibut at the time. But I would catch a thousand, 1500 pounds a day, so...

KAREN BREWSTER: Wow, that's a lot.

RACHEL MASON: So your wife was a Seward girl?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Yeah, she was actually born Outside because of doctor's orders.

Her mother's physical problems that she was -- that she's had her whole life, the doctors wanted her to see specialists down in Washington area, so...

She was actually born in McMinnville, Oregon.

RACHEL MASON: Oh, really?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Yeah. She doesn't like to admit it, but all the rest of the family was born up here.

KAREN BREWSTER: Is she the oldest of the family?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

RACHEL MASON: So what year did you get married?

BOB WHITE: In '75.

KAREN BREWSTER: How did you guys meet?

BOB WHITE: On the streets of Seward. Yeah.

I bumped into her a couple different times, you know, walking back and forth to the Post Office or whatever, talked to her a couple different times.

And I actually was chasing another gal who was her best friend.

And this guy's a little too serious, I'm going to force him off on Susie. And it worked out pretty good. So far anyway.

RACHEL MASON: That's great.

BOB WHITE: Like 35 years of marriage, it couldn't be too bad.

KAREN BREWSTER: We should just say she's from the Anderson family.

BOB WHITE: Yes.

RACHEL MASON: You mentioned raising a family. Do you have kids, too?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Uh hum.

RACHEL MASON: How many kids do you have?

BOB WHITE: Three.

RACHEL MASON: Three? And are they still here in Seward or --

BOB WHITE: No, my -- my oldest is in Juneau. She's been down there since she got out of high school. And then the two boys are up in Fairbanks.

RACHEL MASON: I see.

BOB WHITE: Yeah.

RACHEL MASON: Okay.

BOB WHITE: Both -- both pretty much doing construction. My daughter works for Military and Veterans Affairs in Juneau.

KAREN BREWSTER: So, you somehow transitioned from fishing into -- appears that you do construction?

BOB WHITE: Well, I worked at the cannery in the processing line for -- for a while, and then I got into the construction end of it.

And then there was longshore work occasionally, and -- and you had to be related to somebody that worked on the dock to get a job there.

So I did that, and I did construction, as well.

And then transitioned from that, it got a little bit -- guys were putting way too many hours in, doing way too many recreational things that were a detriment to health on the docks,

so guys would show up drunk, guys would show up still high from the night before, and stuff like that.

And I was like, you know, this is -- this isn't a long term thing, somebody's going to get hurt.

And I got a job building a hotel, so I did that. And then worked a couple different contractors and then transitioned into just working for myself.

Drove school bus for 8 years, during the winter. Kind of staved off the starvation that way.

Wasn't very kind to my wife on that one because gone all the time, I was gone five, six days a week.

And back and forth into fishing different times.

Back into halibut a little bit, and then into seining, salmon seining, Lower Cook Inlet a couple times and then Prince William Sound a couple of years.

Kind of had a falling out with the skipper the last year, I fished over there and I said, hey, that's enough of that.

And got back into construction.

KAREN BREWSTER: You're a jack of all trades, done a little bit of everything.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Floor covering I've done off and on for pretty close to 30 years, and got into the gunsmithing here a few years ago.

And so trying to transition from the torture the body into something a little more fun.

RACHEL MASON: Well, speaking of torturing the body, how did you get into hunting around here?

BOB WHITE: Well, I was just -- hunting was something we always did as a kid, and hunting and fishing was always something that -- that was an activity of interest and was part of the reason I came here.

So I trapped quite a bit, when time allowed. And --

RACHEL MASON: What did you trap for?

BOB WHITE: Well, anything I can catch. And also, you know, mink, marten, coyotes, wolverine, things like that. Beaver.

RACHEL MASON: Could you show -- mark on there where you -- where you trapped.

KAREN BREWSTER: Trapping areas.

BOB WHITE: Trapping areas.

KAREN BREWSTER: This map is in the way.

RACHEL MASON: Which one? This one?

KAREN BREWSTER: The folding up -- Yeah, just hold it down.

RACHEL MASON: I'll hold it down.

BOB WHITE: The folded edges in the way? Well, by the time I quit trapping, most of this area was -- was not accessible up in here.

I did a lot of urban trapping, trapping in --

KAREN BREWSTER: Do you have a thicker green pen?

RACHEL MASON: Yeah. Green is the one. Green is your color.

BOB WHITE: Oh, green is mine -- green is mine, huh?

RACHEL MASON: Right.

KAREN BREWSTER: So that way you can just circle it with that big green one.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. I trapped pretty much from both sides of the valley from about here all the way down clear back into about there.

And I did trap -- trap some more off of Nash Road, up through here. And let's see.

And trapped a little bit back in there.

RACHEL MASON: And could you put a T or T-R or something by each of those to show that it was trapping.

So would you run a trapline?

BOB WHITE: A few sets here and there, where there was some, you know, beaver or -- my most predominant coyote sets were right around the points on the Resurrection River just north of town.

RACHEL MASON: Oh. Was that for a bounty?

BOB WHITE: No, for the hides. The hides back then were worth -- I think the most I got for one was $120.

So they were -- the beaver were worth 18, $20, but the coyotes, the -- I think the market was the military was buying them -- buying them for fur ruffs, sew on their -- on all their arctic gear, that's what they were using, and they preferred the coyote hides from Alaska because they were a bit heavier than the ones from the Lower 48 typical, so...

KAREN BREWSTER: You mentioned that farther up the Resurrection Valley was not accessible for trapping? What did you mean?

BOB WHITE: Well, the -- when the road was put in, there was -- still there weren't bridges. My first excursion up there moose hunting -- and I've moose hunted up there ever since the road was connected.

RACHEL MASON: Maybe you could mark that, too. Put an M by it, for moose.

BOB WHITE: Predominantly, moose hunting. Moose hunting in the Martin Creek area, and then on up to about where the bulldozer is.

Did Doug tell you about that one?

KAREN BREWSTER: I just know it's there. I don't know very much about it.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. It's sitting -- the bulldozer is sitting right -- bulldozer is sitting right about there. And there's a cabin within just a few feet of it, that's gone now.

KAREN BREWSTER: Do you want to mark that cabin site? Just -- do you know whose cabin that was?

BOB WHITE: I suspect it was the same guy that had this cabin here in Placer Creek. And what the heck was his name?

I'm wanting to say it was Whitey Johnson, but I'm not sure if that name is correct.

KAREN BREWSTER: Do you want to mark that cabin at Placer Creek. Is that one still there?

BOB WHITE: It's still there. The last guys I talked to that had been over to it, I never bothered to go to it because it was -- that part of the valley was -- was closed to hunting even before the park. Well, actually, that part wasn't.

It was closed from Redman Creek up, or Redman Creek south to Seward it was closed to hunting. From Redman Creek up, it was open.

But I never was able to get across the creek up there, it was always too deep, running too much water.

And there was some guys that hunted that extensively over there and they used airplanes for access.

KAREN BREWSTER: Is that where the airstrip -- is there an airstrip over there?

BOB WHITE: The old T-craft strip sits right -- I think right -- right here. It's right there.

KAREN BREWSTER: So it's on the north side of the river.

BOB WHITE: On the north side of the river, just south of the Resurrection River cabin.

And pieces and parts of the old Taylorcraft are still there, and there's some wings there, the tail section was still there. Engine and wheels had been hauled out of there.

And the fuselage, somebody had packed it over and stood it on end and actually made a hunting stand out of it last year.

There some trees and stuck some boards out of it. And that's sitting in that beaver pond in the thick brush there, probably a hundred yards from the cabin.

RACHEL MASON: How did the T-craft get there?

BOB WHITE: They were hunting in -- in the November moose season, and they came in for a landing, and in the process, the -- I don't remember whether it had skis or wheels, I think it had wheels, but it didn't --

I think they thought they could land, and they got down and actually broke through the crust of the snow and it flipped the plane over, and it totaled it, and they --

they just came in and scrapped it. And the guys actually walked from there to town, which they didn't have much choice.

RACHEL MASON: They were able to walk out of there?

BOB WHITE: Yeah, they -- well, I mean, the river was pretty cold, and they had to do quite a lot of crossings to get all the way to town, and they actually came on the south side of Resurrection eventually.

But, they had to get -- there were sections of trail up through there, but at that time of year, you couldn't even have seen it.

So unless you had some experience looking for it and knowing where it was at --

The gentleman that had the claim and the cabin in Placer Creek had cabins very frequently up the river four or five miles apart.

All the way from town. And so he could -- and I've thought about it a lot over the years because the conditions of the river, you get stuck in one place, you might get stuck there for a week or two or three.

You get away from your cabin -- your main cabin, and you're on the other side of the river, you've got to have someplace to live, survive.

And with the kind of conditions that we get here, you needed cabins for that.

RACHEL MASON: Yeah. Well, how did you access the moose when you -- when you first were hunting moose up there? Did you walk up there, or --

BOB WHITE: Well, they built the bridge -- they were in the process of building the bridge at 4.8 mile.

The road was blasted through so you could get up the road to that distance, and there was a couple of kind of sketchy bridges on this end of it.

And so you could drive to, which is about 4.8 miles up, and there's still another 3 miles to where it crosses the river.

And I borrowed a canoe from a buddy of mine one year, and I carried the canoe from 4.8 to the end of the road, and then I drug the boat up.

And I was actually right in the area where the Resurrection River cabin is, and I had seen two cows.

A cow that had a fairly mature calf with it, and that was the only moose I saw --

RACHEL MASON: Really?

BOB WHITE: -- the whole 10 days of season. But I got up into where the cabin is now, and just below the T-craft strip, and boy I started finding antler rubs.

I go, wow, I've found me a bull. I'm going to come back.

You know, I run out of groceries. So I come back to town. Of course, I needed to work, too.

So I worked a couple of days, and I grabbed my stuff, and I'm just getting ready to go back up there and I heard, oh, did you hear, Buster dropped somebody in up there and Dennis shot that bull.

Dang it! I spent all that time looking and busting my butt for that, and then had to go up and drag the dang canoe back.

I actually carried it, and it was a 17 foot Grumman square stern, so it weighed about 130 pounds.

So I carried that back to the truck, and got the heck out of there. And I'm coming back with it, and the guy said, oh, yeah, there was a bull moose ran right through the camp today.

It was the day after season was over. So okay. Great. So...

RACHEL MASON: Well, at least you didn't have to carry the canoe and all that moose meat out.

BOB WHITE: Well, that would have been awful torture. Hm.

KAREN BREWSTER: Could have lined it back out. So that -- I want to take us back to the T-craft strip for a minute.

Those guys who crashed, do you know who that was in that plane?

BOB WHITE: Well, I think John Andrews is one of the guys -- Senior, was one of the guys involved in that. Yeah.

KAREN BREWSTER: And then do you know how that strip got there, who put it in and why?

BOB WHITE: You know, I think Stanton -- Joe Stanton was probably involved in that. There was a couple different places that planes got landed up there.

Where the bulldozer is at was one of those places, you could land in there in the winter, it's a big enough open meadow.

And then they ran that bulldozer up there to divert one of the streams that's going over the crest of the hill the wrong way, and it was putting silt water off of -- I think it's this glacier right here.

Let's see what we have here. I think this stream right here is where it jumped, and it was running this way instead of this way.

So they diverted them around. One of these streams up there was dumping a bunch of silt water into Upper Russian, and they were worried about the red salmon in Upper Russian.

And so they ran the bulldozer from town up there. Of course, that was way before the Cooper Lake power project and all that, so...

RACHEL MASON: So is that the source of the Russian River, that -- that Upper Russian? I mean, is that where all the salmon --

BOB WHITE: Well, this -- I think Summit Creek, this stream here is the one that -- that they were worried about.

RACHEL MASON: Oh.

BOB WHITE: And so they diverted it, and then they moved the bulldozer over into here to --

KAREN BREWSTER: How did they get that bulldozer all the way up there?

BOB WHITE: Actually, the bulldozer is a little further up than that. Yeah. It's got to be closer to here.

RACHEL MASON: Well, you can just mark that, too.

KAREN BREWSTER: He did mark it. He just changed the mark.

RACHEL MASON: Change the mark.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Yeah. Actually, the bulldozer would have been -- been right in about there. But they had to divert Summit Creek, which typically runs this way, and it was running that way.

So they changed it around so that the silt wouldn't be in the Upper Russian.

KAREN BREWSTER: And that was a Fish and Game project, or --

BOB WHITE: You know, I don't know who paid for that. The D6 still sits there.

KAREN BREWSTER: Well, I don't know how they would get a Cat all the way up there.

BOB WHITE: Oh, well, there was pieces and parts of the -- of the Cat road all the way up. That's part of what Herman followed with the Exit Glacier Road.

There was places that, you know, they had to cross, and then run -- there was another landing strip right there in front of the Exit Glacier, too.

About where -- about where the road is.

RACHEL MASON: Oh, could you mark where that is, too.

BOB WHITE: It's pretty much where the road going into Exit Glacier is.

RACHEL MASON: Oh.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Yeah. There was an airstrip -- Don Inness (phonetic) actually had to land his plane there once.

RACHEL MASON: How come?

BOB WHITE: He hit a fuel switch in the -- in the evening, he was flying pretty low and he hit a fuel switch and didn't realize it, and he was flying on an empty tank.

So the engine cut out, and he wound up landing it, and then he had to get Frank Dickraft (phonetic) to go up there with some machinery to -- to rebuild enough of the runway so he could get out of there.

RACHEL MASON: How did he know about the airstrip, or did he just --

BOB WHITE: I don't -- I'm not sure. I'm not even sure that he actually wound up landing on the airstrip. There was an airstrip in -- somewhere in there.

RACHEL MASON: Okay. Yeah, if you could write "airstrip."

BOB WHITE: And the other one was -- I'll mark the creek. The airstrip is right there. And it had the name of T-craft.

RACHEL MASON: Yeah.

BOB WHITE: Which the remains of the Taylorcraft still sit there.

RACHEL MASON: That's why they call it that?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Uh hum. And like I say, the remains are still there.

KAREN BREWSTER: The one by Exit Glacier, do you know -- . (Telephone ringing.)

RACHEL MASON: Are we back on?

KAREN BREWSTER: Uh hum.

RACHEL MASON: Can you tell us about other hunting that you did around in that area?

BOB WHITE: Well, I -- I've tried to -- I've bear hunted the valley for -- RACHEL MASON: Really?

BOB WHITES: -- for a long time. I don't --

RACHEL MASON: What kind of bear?

BOB WHITE: Black bear.

KAREN BREWSTER: Do you mean bear caught or just bear hunting?

BOB WHITE: I've -- I've probably killed more bears than anybody else in town.

RACHEL MASON: Wow.

BOB WHITE: Two, sometimes three, a year.

KAREN BREWSTER: Wow. BOB WHITE: So...

KAREN BREWSTER: In this Resurrection, Exit Glacier valley? BOB WHITE: Yeah. Uh hum.

RACHEL MASON: Could you mark where your bear hunting areas are? Generally. BOB WHITE: Well, you want my secrets.

KAREN BREWSTER: No, no, no. RACHEL MASON: Not where you caught it. KAREN BREWSTER: Not where you caught it, but where you were out.

RACHEL MASON: Yeah, just generally. BOB WHITE: Yeah.

KAREN BREWSTER: We're not here to get hunting secrets.

RACHEL MASON: Do you do any guided hunts?

BOB WHITE: No, I don't guide. I've taken a lot of friends. I've killed bears pretty much all the way up and down the valley here.

Yeah. The furthest up we killed one was right -- right in there. Killed a couple up in there.

I've taken, like, what, three moose out of here. The furthest one we took was up right in there.

RACHEL MASON: Okay. You can -- KAREN BREWSTER: Maybe you can mark it. RACHEL MASON: You can mark it.

BOB WHITE: Well, moose hunts I already marked there. RACHEL MASON: Oh, okay.

BOB WHITE: But that's -- that whole area is clear down to the -- into there is kind of moose hunting area.

RACHEL MASON: And how -- how would you go bear hunting? I mean, how would you access the bear?

BOB WHITE: Well, I mean, a lot of it was incidental with moose hunting. You'd bump into them running up and down the trail.

I was actually working the valley from the stream side, and then I'd been up to about where the cabin is, and I -- and the beginning of Resurrection River trail was a little obscure, and more or less just a game trail.

And you could drive up there, put the boat in, and then drag the canoe up and down the river, pretty much lining it, and then drift back down.

So it wasn't much paddling upstream, it was using a rope and hip boots and getting the boat up there.

Then you could access the valley, and then -- then I was coming back down, I got out into this big devil's club thicket, and it was a jungle of devil's club, and the stuff was immense, and the stuff was -- some of it was an inch and a half through and 12 feet high.

And I had come down through there a few days before, and you know, it was kind of a neat spot, there was some bedding in there going on, the moose were bedding in parts of that area.

And I come back through there toward the end of the season, it was a 10 day season back then, open the first of September, ended the 10th.

And I come back down through there and all this devil's club is flat. I'm, like, what in the world.

Well, I didn't realize that black bears fed on that stuff.

RACHEL MASON: Really.

BOB WHITE: And they just mowed down. They just bend it down and grab the -- the -- you know, I mean, there's some significant -- there's a pound or more of berries on each one of the plants.

And they get diarrhea from it, but I think it's part of their natural cycle.

They -- they cleanse their system of all the garbage they've been eating all year with that stuff, and then as they move up the mountain, they continue to eat just vegetation, berries and whatnot.

But they had just mowed this place flat. And I'm, like, this is weird.

And I'm, like, what in the world dug that up over there. So I go walking over there to see what that is, and I get over there, and what in the world, there's a trail here. Who's doing that?

Apparently, they had been doing it all summer and I just missed it, you know. And so I hike up and down the trail and I'm, like, well, this is neat.

Get back out. And I said, I'll go back in a couple days later, and I get up through there and here's this camp, and it's absolutely destroyed. Nobody's in it.

They had a mess tent and a mess box and it was a mess. The box was closed.

And I went through there, and the bears had been in and out of these wall tents. And there was toilet paper and hand paper -- paper towel, you know, the single paper towel deals, you know, they were just strewn everywhere.

And the whole place looked like it had just had an explosion. The bears had been in and out, in and out of the camp, and yeah, it was just a mess.

And so the -- I got up the river and camped, and they had a little bulldozer sitting up there, a little tiny thing, and that was at Martin Creek, so I was hunting up there and looking around.

And I had -- there was an old chunk of tarp there that somebody had left, and it was a little more than I had for gear, so I went ahead and built me a little lean to out of it.

And of course, I struck camp the next morning and carried all my stuff with me.

I didn't have a lot, but just a piece of plastic and a sleeping bag and an axe.

And I go up there and I'm hunting, and I come back and I look over where this was going on, where I'd camped the night before, and there's this big old fire going on.

What in world. A cloud of smoke. And so I walked up there, and they had cleaned up all the litter at that spot and tore down my shelter and built a fire out of all that stuff.

RACHEL MASON: The bears?

BOB WHITE: No, no, the Forest Service guys. RACHEL MASON: Oh, I see.

BOB WHITE: Yeah, the Forest Service workers had done that. But -- yeah, I didn't -- you know, at that time, that was -- what the heck year was that? '76 or '7, somewhere in there. RACHEL MASON: Oh.

BOB WHITE: And so I'm, like, this is weird. I get back down and these guys are in camp, and they said, "Oh, what are you doing?" I said, "Moose hunting. What are you guys doing?" "Oh, we're the trail crew."

And they are sitting there and they've got a -- probably about a 15 pound ham sitting out. And they got some slabs of ham in this great big old skillet over the fire.

"Hey, are you hungry? Can you help us eat this ham?" I said, well, yeah, okay.

So had this great big old slab of ham. And they take it back out and they got a garbage can, a metal garbage can sitting out in the creek with rocks in the bottom of it to hold it down, and that was their refrigerator, and they were trying to eat this ham up before it spoiled.

But they had two of these great big crew boxes. They said, "Yeah, any time you come by, help yourself to the groceries." And I'm, like, what?

"Yeah. Because when we fly this stuff out of here, they are just going to bury it. So help yourself."

I said, okay. Yeah. But yeah, that was pretty interesting.

And the next spring they had moved everything down to -- they camped in one spot, and had their -- their cook set about 100 yards, 150 yards away, so they were camping in tents with no food,

and then they had all the food up at the other site, hopefully trying to keep the bears out, you know, of camp.

RACHEL MASON: Could you mark where this took place? BOB WHITE: That KAREN BREWSTER: These guys were working on building the --

BOB WHITE: They were actually building Resurrection River trail, yeah. RACHEL MASON: Oh.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Oh, gee. It would be right on this flat right in here. I think right there. The creek right there. It comes down there. And there's actually a cabin, an old cabin right there, too.

KAREN BREWSTER: Go ahead and mark that.

BOB WHITE: And then their camp was up on the flat, the trail kind of -- the trail isn't drawn in correctly on this map.

KAREN BREWSTER: Well, this map was before the trail.

BOB WHITE: Yeah. The trail actually goes straight through there. Comes down through here. And there.

Helicopter pad just right in there. And then camp was kind of right there. So they had their cook camp.

And then sleeping camp. And I think that was '76. I'll have to go back on that a little bit.

A friend of mine was actually the brainchild of that trail, so...

RACHEL MASON: Really. KAREN BREWSTER: Who was that?

BOB WHITE: Kerry Martin. He's back in Nova Scotia vacationing. But...

RACHEL MASON: Did you ever do any horseback hunting?

BOB WHITE: I accessed this mostly with horseback the last 15 years.

RACHEL MASON: Oh, really? BOB WHITE: Yeah. Yes.

RACHEL MASON: So you're still doing that today? BOB WHITE: I don't have horses anymore. RACHEL MASON: Oh.

BOB WHITE: I -- well, my old -- my old horse died a couple years ago, and I've baby sat one, and actually got an older horse and kept it through the season and got rid of it.

And then a friend was going through a divorce and she needed a place to put a horse, so I -- I took it and fed it for a year, and then I used it.

Actually used it on a Tustumena hunt. And then she decided she wanted it back because she got wind I was going to put it down that winter after hunting season because it didn't make any sense to keep the poor old guy going, and that horse actually died not long after that anyway, so...

KAREN BREWSTER: So where -- you went up into all these areas with horses?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. I hunted clear to -- clear to the bulldozer on the -- with horses. We -- we packed one moose from here, and another one from Boulder Creek, right in here.

And then hunted it a little bit back up in there, but never had the misfortune of shooting too many up there.

It's a lot of work getting them out. And it's 10 miles to Boulder Creek, and it's another 6, 7 miles to the bulldozer from there, and it's not a fun place to take horses.

There's some muck holes up there the horses just, just about disappear into. So...

KAREN BREWSTER: Is it easier on horses than on foot?

BOB WHITE: Yeah. Because you ain't carrying all that meat. Yeah.

RACHEL MASON: Is that why you got into the horseback?

BOB WHITE: Horses were -- well, yeah. Yeah. Well, the wife liked horses, too. She had a horse first, and I used that one a little bit, and then I wound up trading a bathroom remodel for another one.

Cost me a -- cost me a couple of trucks since then, you know, dollars wise, because it's a couple grand a year to keep a horse.

KAREN BREWSTER: Yeah. Horses are expensive. BOB WHITE: Each.

RACHEL MASON: Is your wife a hunter also?

BOB WHITE: You know, she got -- she got really excited when she drew a buffalo tag a couple years ago, and we got up and we chased him, but we didn't -- we didn't get her into one, but she had --

RACHEL MASON: That was her only hunting experience?

BOB WHITE: Well, no, she likes turkey hunting. But we don't have those here.

KAREN BREWSTER: She didn't go out on all these moose hunts and bear hunts with you?

BOB WHITE: No. She's -- she was involved a couple different times with moose, but it was more or less road hunting, and I'd shot one on the side of the road, and we wound up -- actually, my daughter was just walking, I think.

She would have been a year and a half old about that time. And she was still wearing the little leather shoes type thing.

I shot the moose, and she's out there totting around out there in the blood, guts, and gore.

Threw it all up on the top of the station wagon and brought it home. Well, piled a bunch of it in the back, but put the head and antlers up on top and tied it on.

A little bit like a little redneck Michigan stuff going on. RACHEL MASON: Yeah, right.

BOB WHITE: I didn't have room in the back anyway -- RACHEL MASON: Yeah, right.

BOB WHITE: -- but showed up at work with it on the top of the truck the next day, or the car the next day, and it's, like, well, you better go get that hung up.

I'd say, yeah, well, I've got to find a place to hang it. Well, you can hang it at my place. Okay.

KAREN BREWSTER: Were there other -- you marked a few of those cabins. Are there other cabins out there or -- or -- BOB WHITE: Well, yeah, there's --

KAREN BREWSTER: -- old sites that aren't cabins anywhere that you know about?

BOB WHITE: There's places where the cabins were that aren't -- aren't there anymore.

There was a cabin right here, and it was -- I don't think it was much more than about 8 by 10.

It was right down on the edge of the river, and I found it, and all I found was an old set of GI cot mattress springs, and that's all that was there.

A few tin cans and whatnot. So that was about it for that one.

The other cabins, there's one right next to the Forest Service cabin just across the beaver pond, and it's right there. And the walls of it are still there.

The metal is -- has been salvaged by an individual here about three, four years ago.

Somebody grabbed all the metal out of there.

And then there was -- let's see if I can figure out where that one's at. I think it's right here.

I've actually not been to it, Doug has. But I mentioned it to the other guy that was living up there for a few years, and -- that cabin was somewhere right in there.

RACHEL MASON: Somebody used to live in the cabin all the time?

BOB WHITE: The Placer Creek cabin was the -- the guy's main site, and he was prospecting, and I don't know what else he did there. He was some relation to Seward Shea.

RACHEL MASON: Oh, okay. BOB WHITE: I'm not exactly --

RACHEL MASON: Do you remember his name?

BOB WHITE: I'm wanting to say it's Johnson, but I'm not sure. RACHEL MASON: Oh, that's the same one, the same. BOB WHITE: Yeah.

RACHEL MASON: And do you know approximately when he was there? What -- what year?

BOB WHITE: Probably in the '20s. A lot of the cabins that -- that are -- are there now -- let's see. That one.

Then there's one just past. Yeah. You got that one in there.

It's right here. It's at the fourth bridge up the river trail, and if you go down that stream, it's on the right hand side of the stream going down.

And it's only 2 , 300 yards out there from the trail. But it's -- the last time I saw it, the roof had collapsed, one side was laying down off the side of the cabin, the wood stove was there, the bunks -- bunk was still there, and there was remains of a small blue tarp and lots of jars of food.

RACHEL MASON: Really? BOB WHITE: Yeah. Mostly just like rice and beans and sugar and flour and stuff like that in there.

RACHEL MASON: Nonperishable.

BOB WHITE: All kinds of stuff that would keep. Millard Kane had used it for a lot of years, he had an old orange tarp over the -- over the roof for quite some time.

And then Tom Gillespie and Victor Stoltz used it, I think one winter they trapped up there. Kind of a hard spot to get in.

The trail isn't very good for snow machines to get up the trail, so I think what they wound up doing is taking the snow machine, getting it up there and leaving it,

and then they would access with another machine, and then hike the zone in between when they trapped up there. But that's been quite some -- some years ago.

RACHEL MASON: Did you ever do any sheep hunting?

BOB WHITE: I've never got into sheep. They are -- they are too dang small, and a lot of work to get. RACHEL MASON: Yeah.

BOB WHITE: I've gone in some goat hunting. And I've actually hunt goat out on Resurrection Mountain before.

But I've never been able to draw a regular season tag for there. So there was a couple of registration hunts I got in on that.

RACHEL MASON: Could you indicate where your goat hunting has been?

BOB WHITE: Let's see. That's pretty much it there.

RACHEL MASON: Is it possible to hunt goats on horseback, or do you have to --

BOB WHITE: I've packed goats -- I've packed goats with -- on my horse before. That was up Falls Creek.

We'd go up Falls Creek Mine Road and get into that valley up there.

And she was a bit old at the time, she didn't like it much.

That's probably close to one of the last horses, horse hunts I made with her on that one.

I think I had her a couple times after that for moose, but it was close to the -- close to the last year I used her.

Pretty steep, pretty long. Got back in there, of course, then the horse is in the -- up in the upper valley.

It's kind of -- John Kinda used to pack hunters up into that area, too, but that's Falls Creek up by Moose Pass.

But yeah. That was probably one of the last horses up in there.

And we did get two goats, so we packed them out from there. Had a four wheeler and -- and the horse. So...

KAREN BREWSTER: Have you ever used the horses just recreationally, you know, up and down, along the river --

BOB WHITE: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. We used to have -- there was trails right here that you could access before all the development.

The Exit -- the new Exit Glacier Road actually went through part of the trails that we would recreate on an -- on an evening basis, yeah.

So yeah, we did quite a bit of that, but that's been a number of years ago.

Now you've pretty much got to trailer your horses to go any place safe to ride.

KAREN BREWSTER: What do you -- what's considered safe?

BOB WHITE: Well, riding up and down the road with them isn't exactly safe. People don't always act appropriately.

It's not the -- the safest place to ride.

So all the trails that we used to ride on. And then, you know, brown bears have -- have just exploded in the area in the last 10 years, so it's not exactly a good place to go riding a horse.

Especially when you're riding such a large meal.

KAREN BREWSTER: Well, I didn't know if you could take horses up the river valley, you know, or up on the road in the winter when it's closed, or things like that.

BOB WHITE: Well, you -- you could do that. It's -- but then you have to compete with the skiers and the snowmachiners, and there's only a certain period of time that the trail's actually usable in that regard.

And once you start getting some crust on the snow and the horses start going through that, and then the snow gets deeper, you ain't doing much of that.

I mean, it's possible, but it's not the -- not fun recreation.

We've -- we've run horses up Summit Creek Trail in the snow, and actually got caught in there in the snow, in a blizzard once, with the wife.

That was a caribou tag. And you know, when you're about 8 miles from the road and you've got to go through a pass that's got 4 or 5 feet of fresh snow in it, it's a real challenge.

The horses could find the trail, I couldn't see them at all. And with the gear we had, and whatnot, it wasn't fair to the horses to ride.

And the wife rode hers. And I'm trying to think if we had -- I'd borrowed a horse for that one. We had her horse and I'd borrowed a horse for that trip.

And I wound up just hanging on to the tail of the horse, and letting the horse about half drag me through the snow.

So we managed to get down through that one. I didn't want to go back through the pass, but she insisted, and I should have insisted more, because there were lower passes that didn't have snow in them, and that's the direction we should have went.

But she didn't want to go that route.

KAREN BREWSTER: So with horses in snow, do you want to worry about post holing and can break a leg? Is that --

BOB WHITE: Well, footing is -- footing is an issue, but chafing of the -- of the legs is a bigger issue, especially if you get some crust on, they'll start to chafe the hair off, and then they'll -- they'll get to bleeding and, you know,

the cuticle right at the top of the nail will -- will get beat up, and -- you know, you can cripple a horse permanently with too much of that kind of activity.

So it's just not a -- and then you're running shoes on the horses so the horse's hoof is warm, the steel shoe is cold, and so ice freezes to the shoe, and pretty quick they are standing around or trying to maneuver with, you know, cantaloupe size chunks of ice on the bottom of their feet, so you can imagine trying to walk standing on a -- something the size of a softball.

Yeah. So there's -- hunted up Resurrection River Trail, or Resurrection Pass Trail couple different times that way, and went up Devil's Creek, going up in there in the fall for caribou, and you can hear the horses stumbling around in the middle of the night, get out and go outside and take the hatchet and knock the ice balls off,

and then wake up a couple hours later and have to do it all over again. So the horses didn't get any sleep and neither did you. But yeah. It gets to be quite a challenge.

You know, the existing challenges for the park right now, that I see, and it's -- sooner or later it's going to happen. All the development that they have done at Exit Glacier is going to go away.

There won't be anything left there. It's going to wash away in a flood. The buildings, outhouses, I don't care what they've got there, pavement, you name it, the connection to it, that's the easiest one to lose.

KAREN BREWSTER: The bridge?

BOB WHITE: Not the bridge. The bridge will always be there. That bridge is not going anywhere, but it will be under gravel sooner or later.

KAREN BREWSTER: Really? The river is changing there?

BOB WHITE: There was probably 20 some feet of clearance below the structure of that bridge when they built it. 20 something feet.

RACHEL MASON: And what is it now?

BOB WHITE: I would say it's probably around 8 to 10. RACHEL MASON: Wow.

BOB WHITE: And well, actually to the surface of the water, I would say it's probably 6 feet right now.

And the combination of all the gravel that's coming from Exit Glacier and Paradise Creek are pushing it against that point below the over -- the overlook.

And so now if you go up there and you look up the stream, there's some islands where it used to be bank, and it's backed up considerable up there.

KAREN BREWSTER: So the gravel coming from Exit and Paradise is just causing a dam kind of --

BOB WHITE: And then, of course, there's the main source of gravel in the stream is also Placer River, or Placer Creek, and Redman Creek.

So those are all introducing -- Martin Creek to a certain extent, but Boulder Creek, Placer Creek, and Redman Creek get pretty wild, and they push a lot of material down into the river, which winds up marching its way down.

And that's a real big flat spot right there, and with the introduction of all the gravel from Exit and the Paradise Creek there, there's an awful lot of material built up there.

And it's -- I think last year they closed the road up there because it was actually water running over the -- over the road right about where their sign is up there.

And the next low spot -- because there's a little bit of a hill past the sign, the next low spot's right back next to the mountain where they built the buildings.

And that flooded pretty seriously in '86 and again in '06. So there's significant risk to the structures there and the trails.

RACHEL MASON: So those are some changes that you've noticed in -- in the glacier since you've been --

BOB WHITE: The glacier hasn't changed a whole lot in, you know, 30 plus years, the glacier hasn't changed a whole lot.

It melts back and pushes forward, and it melts back and pushes forward.

And you know, some years the cap gets exposed, and other years it stays under snow. You know. So...

RACHEL MASON: So you haven't noticed such a dramatic change? BOB WHITE: No.

RACHEL MASON: Or any dramatic change? BOB WHITE: No. And then there's the signage along the road up there, which Bob Satin (phonetic) put in up there, and it's -- it's hilarious. They can't be serious.

RACHEL MASON: You don't think it's accurate? BOB WHITE: No. No. It's not even -- no. No. RACHEL MASON: It's not even close to what -- BOB WHITE: It's -- it's -- it's silly is really what it is.