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He couldn’t help but wonder, “where had all the debris come from, and when?” Again the answer that presented itself to him was a flood. had begun in this region, then abruptly stopped”,’ really began to take shape.
The region is unique: let the observer take the wings of the morning to the uttermost parts of the earth: he will nowhere find its likeness.” By 1928 Bretz was an experienced and highly credentialed field geologist.In 1911 he enrolled at the University of Chicago to pursue a doctorate in geology.He graduated summa cum laude in 1913 and immediately thereafter returned to Seattle where he accepted a position as assistant professor of geology at the University of Washington.Here is Bretz, writing in 1928 after one of his field trips across Washington State in the Pacific Northwest of the US: “No one with an eye for landforms can cross eastern Washington in daylight without encountering and being impressed by the ‘”scabland’.” Like great scars marring the otherwise fair face of the plateau are these elongated tracts of bare, or nearly bare, black rock carved into mazes of buttes and canyons. It interrupts the wheat lands, parcelling them out into hill tracts less than 40 acres to more than 40 square miles in extent.One can neither reach them nor depart from them without crossing some part of the ramifying scabland.