There is always a unique story behind the formation of a body of water. But one lake in particular has always piqued my interest, as its history is unlike many others. So, I picked up a copy of Ellen Butler and Kaitlin Johnson’s Images of America: Earthquake Lake (Arcadia Publishing, $24), which shows the history of the infamous “Quake Lake” through a series of old photographs. This lake is a reminder of Montana’s deadliest earthquake, which permanently changed not only the landscape, but also some of Yellowstone’s unique geothermal features, as new geysers formed and old ones retired.
West Yellowstone faced seemingly irreparable damage to roads, buildings, and houses. Stories of trapped campers, injured visitors, and search & rescue attempts accompany chilling photos to illustrate the darker history behind the lake. An illustrated map at the beginning of the book offers a visual history of the Madison Canyon earthquake area, which helped me orient myself while reading. Check it out before your trip to the lake to learn about the rich history of the area.