Great Falls National Park – CHASM!

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When I was a kid, my friends and I would go down into and swim in the CHASM. The thing itself was awesome with its roaring and booming when the falls were falling. I was always frightened or at least uneasy when we went down there (but I went because I didn’t want to be “chicken”).

I was also fascinated by the word CHASM. I could hear roaring and booming in it. I think that most of us pronounced the word with a soft ch as in “child,” but I knew also that it could be pronounced with a strong ch as in “chaos.” I now know that the hard ch is correct, derived through the Latin hard ch from the Greek X, which is pronounced “Kai.”

The word and the thing itself are both still ominous to me.