Monday, July 9, 2012

Glacier -- GPL & Going to the Sun Road

After our short hike into Twin Falls, we made a yummy camp dinner (beef packets) and then drove into East Glacier to show the girls Glacier Park Lodge. It's kind of amazing to me how it seriously hasn't changed in 15 years! 
The girls by the gift store 

They weren't as amazed and interested in the big logs that make up the construction of the lodge. But they sure enjoyed the dessert we had in the restaurant! I had high hopes of sharing the wonderfulness of the pies served at the Park Cafe in St. Mary with my family, but after a chat with our hiking guide about how they were still serving last years frozen pies, I settled for dessert at GPL. It was pretty good, but not the best.

It's not like I could show the girls the little corner of the kitchen in which I spent a majority of my summer in 97' baking biscuits and dessert, but it was still kind of cool to show them a snapshot of my life from long ago. 

The next day we decided to take the girls up to see the Going to the Sun Road. On our drive between East Glacier and St Mary, we kept our eyes peeled for any wildlife on the hills, in the trees, etc. And we were pleasantly surprised to actually see a bear! Erik spotted it up on a hillside and so we pulled over and pulled out the binoculars. 

See that brown spot sort of in the middle top? That's the Grizzly bear we spotted.

It was pretty cool, we watched the bear run around up there for several minutes before he was out of sight. Then we continued to head on up the road to St. Mary.

Once inside the park, we stopped near Rising Sun to eat a picnic lunch.

Our first stop on "The Road" was Sunrift Gorge and Baring Falls.

Baring Falls

It was a pretty short hike, but it was nice to get out of the car and walk a bit!

Sunrift Gorge

We made it to Logan Pass and were disappointed to find the the boardwalk trail to the Hidden Lake overlook was too snowy for us to walk. I shouldn't have been surprised, we had a pretty cool spring and I know the snow hangs on up there in Glacier, but I just didn't think about it. 

Even though we didn't do any walking, the girls were able to hand in their Junior Ranger workbooks to a nice ranger there and get their badges and a sticker for taking a hike in Glacier. An interesting fact we learned on our hike the day before: The average length of visit to Glacier National Park is 3 hours. Guess how long it takes on average to drive the Sun road? Yeah, Three hours. I guess 85% of the folks who visit Glacier don't even get out of their cars! Crazy. There are so many cool places to see off the road it makes me sad to think folks are missing that. 

My Junior Rangers

An overcast and snowy Logan Pass

We didn't get to see any Mountain Goats :(

But the mountains and falls were gorgeous!

We did stop to see "Trick Falls" on our way back home to our campsite in Two Medicine. Another short hike but really cool falls. 

And flowers! They were everywhere, but not a ton of variety just yet. 
And that was the end of Day 2 in Glacier.

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