Glacier National Park

Limited Internet makes keeping this current a bit challenging! The past four days we’ve been in Glacier National Park, hiking and gawking and trying to stay dry. It’s been stormy, with the steep mountains draped in clouds and rain every night. Many of the trails are still closed due to snow.  Still, wildflowers are abundant as if a careless gardener threw open packets of seeds all along the roadways and valleys.  We hiked to Rockwell Falls near Two Medicine Lake and I took delight in everything– the craggy mountain looming over the valley, changing colors from red to gray to purple in the light.  And the meadow filled with so many colors and textures of green – the delicate columbine leaves, glossy currents, papery thimbleberry, small huckleberry bushes and bright bear grasses, all of it shot through with Queen’s Cup and Cat’s Ears and lupines and twin flowers, everything teeming with life and freshness. Neither words nor photos (at least my photos, anyway) seem to accurately describe the scale and beauty of this place.

We were completely soaked in a pelting rainstorm while walking out of Avalanche Lake, absolutely drenched to the bone, and had to endure a chilly shuttle ride and two-mile bike ride back, dripping and with squishing shoes, to get back to camp and our cozy Minnie.  For dinner we turned leftover tomato sauce into a quick baked pasta, gooey with mozzarella and fragrant with basil. If there is a meal more comforting than cheesy noodles, I’m not aware of it.  A good bottle of St. Clemente Oroppas warmed us as well.

Today has been stormy and we whiled the day away reading in the warm main room of Many Glacier Lodge, listening to someone play piano and sipping hot chocolate.  Whether at the lodge, in campsites or out on the trail, everyone we’ve met here has been chipper and quick to exchange pleasantries.  All on vacation, all tourists, and all here to marvel at the sights and be awed – everyone is cheerful, or pretending to be so. The only exception seems to be a few shuttle drivers who are tired of driving sightseers up the winding road to Logan Pass. Wildlife sightings so far include a mountain goat with two babies, a female moose and her offspring and a big bull moose with a full heavy-looking rack.  I’m hoping for a grizzly, but preferably from the Minnie and not while we’re out on a trail!  If we don’t spot one here, we’ll have another opportunity later this week – tomorrow we’re headed to Banff, Canada. Pictures and more to come when we have more reliable internet access.

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