Well, here we are in Montana, the Big Sky. Right now it’s a big cloudy snowy wet sky. But it’s awesome. My parents (whom I now refer to as “you pair”) had a good, albeit brief, time in Glacier National Park.Much of the park was closed, including Going to the Sun Road, which I really wanted to show them, but we had a nice time anyway.
The previous day we drove through southern Alberta, and, thanks to dad’s poor sense of direction, we took a wrong turn (or missed a turn) in the tiny town of Pincher Creek. upon reaching the edge of town, I realized his mistake and cleverly stop to ask for directions. The young girl walking along the side of the road was somewhat surprised when the window rolled down and a heavy Aussie accent says “We’re trying to find America – Do you know where it is?”.
We crossed the Canadian border first thing in the morning, from Waterton, and had some trouble convincing the customs agent/nazi that I, though related to the par of Aussies riding with me, am a US citizen, though I didn’t have my passport to prove it. He asked me twice where I was born, and both times I answered correctly. 100% is a good enough score to be allowed to pass into the country. So we sauntered on through, and into Glacier National Park. Glacier’s awesome, and one of my favorite places anywhere. We spent some time in and around the Many Glacier area, drove up to Sun Point on Going to the Sun Road, then drove on down to Two Medicine, near East Glacier. Absolutely awesome! The place was nearly deserted, just a few other campers in the vicinity. We hiked about 3.5 miles around Two Medicine Lake, and the colors were simply amazing. Subtle and soft one minute, vibrant and intense the next. The hike was fantastic, quiet and peaceful, the forest provided a reverie we all connected to. Mum won the hike back to camp, she stayed in the rear behind dad (leading) and me in the middle, then stormed back the last few hundred yards with a devastating finishing kick. I think dad led too hard to early, and though he denies it, I’ll bet his hamstrings, quads and calves are feeling it today. I performed well, though even after a solid season of hiking and backpacking, my form couldn’t touch mum’s. She’s always gone for gold, and this hike belonged to her – great effort mum!
We had a nice quiet evening, went to bed early, then awoke to snow in the morning. We had a simple breakfast, and headed on out, though the colors along the Two Medicine Road were even more intense than they had been the day before on our drive in, and we stopped a number of times to enjoy them. This photo posted above is of a small stand of aspen, right at the peak of their color, wrapping themselves around a dead and split old spruce tree. I loved the contrast of color, as well as the feeling of vibrancy of the fall leaves and their symmetry with the gnarled trunk.
After leaving Glacier, we drove down to Great Falls, did some grocery shopping, and I realised I’d lost my cell phone. I visited an internet cafe to find the number to call to report it to my provider, and found a few emails from friends who’d received a call from the person who found it, and handed it in to to the Tourist Information Center in Banff National Park. I have no idea who the person was, or how to reach them, but a thousand of the most sincere “thank yous” from me to you. I appreciate it so much. Hopefully they can mail it to Anchorage and I’ll pick it up there. Thanks again. If you ever read this, contact me, and I’d like to offer a print, any size, if you’d like. If not, may the best of Grace be with you.
The rest of our journey included an awesome drive south from Great Falls through the Lewis & Clark National Forest, and over Kings Hill Summit, touched with a slight dusting of fresh snow. Absolutely stunning!
Tomorrow, a few errands and we visit Yellowstone!