Friday, August 21, 2015

A Glacier Trip

Currently at:
The Cheap Sleep Motel
Whitefish, MT

While we are in Montana workamping 
we couldn't leave the area without exploring 
Glacier National Park.
Our desire was not to take the RV up there,
so we figured a hotel stay in our budget.

We couldn't go up without making sure the
Going to the Sun Road was open,
and that didn't happen until late June.
With all that was going on at the campground in White Sulphur,
we postponed our trip until August 20-22.
the forest fires in Glacier park, Montana, Idaho, Washington
and Oregon have caused so much smoke!

George and I checked into the Cheap Sleep Motel
in Whitefish, Montana after our 5 hour drive.

It's perfectly located 25 miles outside of the West Glacier entrance.
Last night we found a great restaurant to relax at happy hour,
then had a great meal.


Mac and Cheese
We walked around the town of Whitefish afterwards..

You can tell how much smoke is in the air.

This morning we got up, had our so-so continental breakfast,
then stopped at Subway to pick up sandwiches for our picnic later.

We drove into the park, and showed our Senior pass to get in :-)

Our decision was to take the park's free shuttle 
from Apgar Visitor Center to Logan Pass.
This way George could see the sites,
and not have to worry about driving the truck on the Going to the Sun Road.

We parked and went inside so we could get our park passport stamped..

and then sat and waited for the shuttle.

It was nice to ride the shuttle,
so that we could enjoy the view,
this is mostly what we saw all day :-(

If we didn't smell the smoke we would have sworn it was a heavy fog.

When we arrived at Logan Pass, it was hazy, but still decent out.

We went inside and checked out the visitors' center there.
It has a big picture window to look out of at the mountains.

We were both in the mood for a hike,
so we took the trail to Hidden Lake.
It was 1.5 miles one way with a 1325 foot elevation gain.
The trail starts out paved, then there are sections of boardwalk
so that hikers are raised above the snow, slush, mud, and rivulets.
We did see flows of water, but no snow down on the ground.

We turned around occasionally to see how far we'd come.

As we climbed higher up, it got a bit chilly!

There were patches of snow on the sides of the mountains..

I was thrilled with the alpine flowers..

and the water falling from the snow melt..

We saw a lot of cute squirrels munching on flowers..

At the overlook we got to look down at Hidden Lake.

We can't even imagine what this would have looked like without the smoke.
George and I sat on a ledge overlooking the meadow to eat our lunch.
The ranger on duty assured it was quite alright to do so :-)

Soon it was time to head back down.
We were pleasantly surprised to see some mountain goats
on the side of the trail.

A few of them have radio collars on,
as some scientists are studying their habits.

We made it safely to the visitors' center after hiking over 3 miles!
There is some benches to rest on while waiting for the shuttle.
We decided to return to Apgar instead of continuing to St Mary's,
as the smoke was getting worse.

By the time we got back to Whitefish it was starting to rain.
We stopped and had an ice cream at a cute little place called Sweet Peaks.

Now we're relaxing in our little motel room.

Tomorrow we head back to White Sulphur..
two more weeks to go!


  1. So sorry there was so much smoke. Thanks for the great views, we didn't get there last year.

  2. So sorry there was so much smoke. Thanks for the great views, we didn't get there last year.

  3. That's too bad that there is so much smoke. But you made the best of it and had a super day. Lemonade I guess. ;c)

  4. We did that hike (to the lake overlook) a couple of weeks ago. Thanks for the 1325 feet figure -- now we feel more like we did something worthwhile :-)

  5. Loved the mountain goat pics! Hopefully one day you can return to Glacier and see it without the smoke.

  6. I'm so glad you were able to see as much as you were considering the smoke. And you saw mountain goats and only did one hike. Very cool! I broke my ankle there on about day 5 of our 2 weeks so we too have to figure out how to get back there.

  7. Bummer about the smoke, but the views still looked pretty cool.