Friday, August 7, 2009

Oh My Goodness Glacier!

We fell asleep last night under the soft glow of the parking lot lights at the Polson, Montana Walmart.  It was quiet, since that is not a 24-hour store.  We woke early this morning to the sound of rain on the motor home roof.  Since today’s drive was to be fairly short, we took our time getting ready to leave, even though there wasn’t much to do.  We only put out 2 slides and didn’t even lower the jacks.

The rain let up just long enough for me to take the dogs out for a morning walk around the parking lot, then it started in again.  The forecast for our destination, Coram, Montana, was 70% chance of rain all day.

We set out a little after 8:30, going north on US Highway 93 along the west side of Flathead Lake.

This was pretty much the view for the first half of our day’s journey:

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 012 We took our time in the rain.  As we got close to Kalispell, the rain gradually stopped, it actually looked like it had not rained in that area this morning.  We stopped for fuel at Columbia Falls, and arrived at the North American RV Resort just east of Coram a few minutes before 11 a.m.  The sky was overcast and gray, but no rain.

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 029

We got checked in at the office and found our sites, this time right next to each other. 

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 028 After we got settled in, it was time to go exploring.  Our first stop was about 7 miles down the road, at the West Glacier Restaurant for a quick lunch.

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 036 Then we headed into the park.  None of us have been here before, so it’s a totally new experience for all four of us.  Wow, this is an incredibly beautiful area, even on a gray and cloudy day.

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 047

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 107 There is basically just one road in Glacier National Park, the Going to the Sun Road, which goes right through the middle of the park.  There are roads around the perimeter of the park, and a few roads that lead to a specific destination, but no “loops” like there are in Yellowstone.  We made it a little over halfway across the park, to the Logan Pass. Visitor’s Center, before deciding to turn back for the day.

We saw several of these waterfalls along the road:

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 124

The only wildlife we could get a picture of was this Columbian Ground Squirrel, although we did catch a quick glimpse of a mountain goat.

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 178 Mark, who is not a big fan of heights, was driving this road, which really does seem like it goes to the sun because it is so high and narrow.  I was surprised when I checked my GPS and found that we were at an elevation of less than 6500 feet, it seemed like we must have been much higher!  The scenery on this road is just breath-taking!  And this is from a woman who grew up in the Colorado Rockies.

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 156

Glacier Day One Aug 09 Ellie 174 We have had such an incredible day, how does it get better!


Allan and Jeanne said...

So happy you are getting to Glacier National Park. We were there several years ago and thoroughly enjoyed our stay. We love your pictures. Keep them coming.
Dream Reachers
Allan and Jeanne Webster

Rick said...

Great blog and terrific pictures. We were in Glacier Park just recently - it is sure a beautiful place to visit.

Fred Wishnie said...

We envy you! We were there 2 years ago and the road was closed for construction. All we could do was go in from either end for a bit. It's on our list for a return. Take plenty of pictures.
Fred & Jo

Avery's Wanderings said...

Great pictures Ellie: We hope to go there later this month.
Sylvia & Glenn