Saturday, September 15, 2012

Going to the Sun Road and More (West Glacier, Mt)

The truth is that our time here at Glacier is somewhat stifled because of the size of our truck.  Coming here was a late summer decision.   Knowingly, we arrived here after the shuttle system had stopped for the season and, as mentioned previously, we can't drive most of the Going-To-The-Sun-Road because of our truck.  This is a minute glitch that we can easily tolerate.  Consequently, we're not currently getting to explore all of the interior of the park so we're really just kind of piddling around here at a very leisurely pace.  Having said this, please know we're not bummed by any of this. Next time, and there will be a next time, we'll arrive earlier in the season when we can take advantage of the shuttle and then we'll be able to freely move through the park.

So Sunday we did a little hike on the Rocky Point Nature Trail,

and started to hike the McDonald Lake Trail, both accessible from a portion of the Going-to-the-Sun Road where our truck is "legal".  The nature trail was nice with a great view from the "point",

but frankly the trail around the lake was mostly a bust.  The fire of 2003 greatly scarred the area and, with the short growing season, the growth has been slow to respond.  But nonetheless we got out in the fresh air and hiked 2-3 miles for a little exercise.

Monday we went to Kalispell, MT.  I'd like to tell you that we traveled there for some noble reason but the truth is we found another HuHot and couldn't resist.  We then hit a Super Walmart and while driving home stumbled upon a nice "little" gem the Hungry Horse Reservoir and Dam.  The dam is holding back the South Fork of the Flathead River and at 564 feet tall it is the 11th tallest in the U.S.

 We enjoyed some mighty pretty scenery that even included a rainbow.

Tuesday we did a little more legitimate hike.  Just outside the West Glacier entrance is a nice hike along the river.  The trailhead is at the historic Belton Bridge. 

This was the western Entrance to Glacier NP from 1920 - 1938.   We did 5 miles while entertaining the bears with our singing, clapping two rocks together and Debbie melodically calling out "hey bear!" It was a beautiful day and a nice outing.

Wednesday was our mega day in Glacier.  We picked up our rental car (a nice little Impala) at 8am.  Off we go to drive the Going-To-The-Sun Road.  It was just terrific!  Every mile presents delightful views.

The premier destination of the drive may be  Logan Pass.

So there we stopped primarily to do some hiking.  We did 3 miles round trip on the Hidden Lake Trail.

It was mostly on a raised boardwalk.

You just have to see to believe. The route includes majestic views of mountains and valleys, beautiful rocks, babbling brooks with ice,

 and then you arrive high above Hidden Lake.

 A HUGE bonus was the presence of mountain goats,

  including momma, papa and their babies.

  The family was about 30 feet off the trail.  It was a moment!  Just before arriving back at the Visitor Center we were fortunate enough to catch a glimpse of this very cute marmot.

 We then found our way to the Highline Trail.

 The spectacular scenery continued.

The trail goes on for many miles. We only did 2 but they were 2 very exciting miles. Frankly I was surprised Debbie did the tricky part that included a very narrow path with cables for stability.

I doubt Debbie would have been smiling if she'd happen to have taken a look down.

Great fun.  After our hiking we continued our drive stopping at numerous highlights along the way. 

We had dinner in St. Mary on the east side of the park then drove the road again to return to our camper.  Wonderful day!

Yesterday we moved to a campground in St. Mary, where we'll be for a week before heading to Sidney, Mt. for the beet harvest.  We're looking forward to checking out the east side of the park and a trip into Canada to Waterton.



  1. Boy, those are some awesome pictures. Love the views of majestic mountains.

  2. Glad to see that you made the Going-to-the-Sun Drive, a visit to Glacier wouldn't be complete without it! Another HuHot? You're killing me!

  3. Oh, how I wish we were with you! We would love to be on this "adventure" with you but I don't know if I could do that hike with the cable! Debbie, I am so impressed!!! The pictures are fantastic!!!