Saturday, July 19, 2008

Day 2 and 3 at Glacier National Park

Our second day at Glacier started off at East Glacier - it was overcast and my pics of the lodge are too sucky to upload. We had a tasty breakfast of huckleberry-stuffed french toast and drove northward to Many Glacier, where we stayed next. On the way in, our car was greeted by hordes of swallows, and in an open field of wildflowers to our right, we actually saw a female grizzly bear and her cubs. It was a "bear jam", meaning everyone pulled their cars over to stare at them through binoculars and zoom lenses, but they were far enough away that they'd just be a brown smudge in my pics. Mental note: buy a fancy camera with a zoom lens! :)

Here's the lodge at Many Glacier:
Many Glacier Lodge

My pictures do it no justice because it was out of this world gorgeous. It was one of my favorite places to stay on the trip, although the rooms were small and old, and the walls thin and flimsy (and, cough, overpriced) it was still a wonderful experience. It was the biggest lodge we stayed in, so I got these pleasant summer-camp sort of vibes, with all the families playing cards and checkers and surly teens trying to pretend they were there alone. :) For some reason I kept picturing myself in the Dirty Dancing movie (without the cheeseball plot and fun parties, of course):

Many Glacier Lodge

We took a boat tour and hike which took us over the lake in the picture, through some woods, over another lake, through some more woods, and up to another beautiful glacial lake. On the way we saw a huge moose, totally unaffected by our presence and snacking on branches - no picture of that because I didn't feel like waiting in line to snap a blurry picture. We also got attacked by clumsy, vicious mosquitoes and saw pretty wildflowers:

tiny flowers

We enjoyed the 11:30 sunset with a huckleberry daiquiri (which I suspect was actually a virgin smoothie) and the next day woke early for a quick hike to Redrock Falls. I'm neither a "real" hiker nor an athlete, so we chose our hikes accordingly and it was perfect for me - the best part was hopping around on the rocks at the falls like a crazed mountain goat:

at Red Rock falls

Do try the large size for evidence that I even looked like a crazed mountain goat. :) The falls had a way of hypnotizing us, and we stood there for a long time, feeling the mist from the water, hearing the soft roar, and watching a couple of cute Dipper birds scold each other:

the falls

More beautiful wildflowers:

little flower grows by the falls

We drove north again and into Canada - on the Canadian side the Park is called Waterton. Amusing sidenote: those Canadian border police are quite serious! We were asked a series of odd, prying questions like how long we'd known each other, what exactly, my boyfriend does at work, and the usual where are you coming from, where are you going. Each answer received a non-commital "Hmmm..." and a suspicious look. I mean, we were wearing hiking gear, had matching nerdsacks, and were driving down a deserted mountain road in a national park... how suspicious could we be? I'm used to the bored "Are you an American citizen" that I'd always get as a kid coming into the US from Mexico. Maybe a Mexican from Texas in Canada who speaks perfect English is a bit of a stretch? They did seem to give le Carotte a very odd look... ;) More on Canada soon...


muralimanohar said... I *really* want to go see the mountains. And those forget-me-nots are gorgeous.

Kristin said...

oh how beautiful... i mean absolutely breathtaking... i LOVE your images. WOW.

~Reclaiming The Home

Michelle said...

Such beautiful photographs! I think I want to take a holiday there.