Calling the rustic lookout “the most enduring legacy of the Civilian Public Service (CPS) Camp in Glacier National Park,” The Glacier Park Fund has taken on the building’s restoration as one of its Glacier Park Centennial Legacy Projects. The proposed work involves stabilizing the roof, repairing and reconstructing shutters, repairing and painting exposed exterior wood surfaces, and masonry stabilization.
The Glacier Park Fund projects funding needs of $36,000 of for the lookout’s rehabilitation. (Click here to make a donation.) The planned restoration work will slow down the accelerating deterioration so that the historic structure can withstand the harsh alpine conditions in harmony with the landscape.
While air observation allows a more comprehensive coverage of the park
and has replaced the manned lookout almost entirely, the Heavens Peak fire lookout once provided observers with a marvelous panoramic view including the Livingston Range, the Lake McDonald Valley, Logan Pass and the Garden Wall. Typically, observers used an Osborne Firefinder (aligning the sites rather like aiming a rifle) to pinpoint the exact location of any observed smoke on a circular park map.
The construction of the Heavens Peak lookout was one of many projects completed by conscientious objectors assigned to Glacier Park’s World War II Civilian Public Service Camp (CPS). The camp housed 550 men.
The Glacier Park Fund’s overall goal for multiple, short-term legacy projects is $250,000. According to the fund, the Heavens Peak Lookout restoration, in consultation with the park’s historic architect, is part of a 2010 birthday gift to the park. In 2009, restoration work on a 1913 ranger cabin was completed providing space for a winter school programs. More accessible trails, a wildlife viewing platform and upgraded Logan Pass visitor center exhibits are also on the wish list.
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