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Montana, east, view of formations in the Terry Badlands Wilderness study area at sunrise.
Now a wilderness study area, the Terry Badlands are rugged hills in the area referred to as the Fort Union Formation. The mounds are capped with colorful and more erosion resistant "clinker", a term describing sediments such as shale and siltstone that was baked when the underlying coal beds burned.

When William Clark of the Lewis and Clark expedition passed through this area in July 31, 1806, he noted in his journal, "here the river approaches the high mountainous country on the N W. Side. those hills appear to be composed of various Coloured earth and Coal without much rock. I observe Several Conical pounds which appear to have been burnt. this high Country is washed into Curious formed mounds & hills and is cut much with reveens".

He was correct in his observation as having been burnt. The high temperatures of the burning low grade coal (lignite) baked and mottled the shale into pink, red, and sometimes bright yellow, green and black stone. The resulting colorful textures in the hill caps are fascinating.

Sales of this image benefit a non-profit organization. Global Health Equity Foundation is a philanthropic organization making tangible improvements toward global health equity. The Foundation combines research with advocacy and capacity-building projects to improve healthcare and health education worldwide. www.ghef.org
Copyright
©Leland Howard Fine Art Nature Photography and Meta Space Communications
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7216x5412 / 22.3MB
Contained in galleries
Art, Texture and Form in Nature, Montana East
Montana, east, view of formations in the Terry Badlands Wilderness study area at sunrise.<br />
Now a wilderness study area, the Terry Badlands are rugged hills in the area referred to as the Fort Union Formation. The mounds are capped with colorful and more erosion resistant  "clinker", a term describing sediments such as shale and siltstone that was baked when the underlying coal beds burned. <br />
<br />
When William Clark of the Lewis and Clark expedition passed through this area in July 31, 1806, he noted in his journal, "here the river approaches the high mountainous country on the N W. Side. those hills appear to be composed of various Coloured earth and Coal without much rock. I observe Several Conical pounds which appear to have been burnt. this high Country is washed into Curious formed mounds & hills and is cut much with reveens".<br />
<br />
He was correct in his observation as having been burnt. The high temperatures of the burning low grade coal (lignite) baked and mottled the shale into pink, red, and sometimes bright yellow, green and black stone. The resulting colorful textures in the hill caps are fascinating. <br />
<br />
Sales of this image benefit a non-profit organization. Global Health Equity Foundation is a philanthropic organization making tangible improvements toward global health equity. The Foundation combines research with advocacy and capacity-building projects to improve healthcare and health education worldwide. www.ghef.org