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Alaska’s Travel Diary

Saturday, 27 Jun 2009

Location: Missoula to Glacier, USA

MapFor Friday:
Began driving a short distance (150 miles) from Missoula to Glacier National Park, only to come upon congestions with road work going 35 mph for at least 35 miles. It reminded me of Houston traffic. The views, however, of Flathead Lake in Salish country overshadowed the delays and the picture-taking began. Casinos abound and I was surprised the two gamble-holics in the backseat didn't request an hour to play their odds. We stopped near Kalispell for a break and to make sandwiches even though we were only 30 minutes from our final destination. The KOA typically will not check you in until after 4, but we had called ahead to request an early check-in in order to drop off our stuff and Marmar as she would not be making the tour through the park on our Red Jammer Bus on the Going to the Sun Road. As it turns out, Gwynne's back was bothering her, so the two of them stayed behind to rest and get the fixin's out for our 'weinie roast' and 2nd servings of s'mores. Tracy, Sam, and I kept our fingers crossed that they wouldn't question why the park pass holder wasn't present so we wouldn't have to spend an extra $25 to enter the park. We breezed right through! The Red Jammer Bus left Lake McDonald (Village Inn at Apgar) at 2:30 pm. Jan, our driver, started giving us the information of the park and after 30 minutes we started climbing up steep grades, winding roads, narrow paths for an 8-ft wide vehicle......weeping rocks with glacial waterfalls, steep drops on one side of the bus & mountains or walls of ice on the other, beautiful lush green forests, amazing views. The ultimate goal....Logan Pass at the top. We were given 15 minutes to take a break. Sam chose to spend that time in the snow, this being his first time EVER to see and touch it. Tracy & I took MANY pictures of the event. The ride back was much quicker as we didn't make many scenic stops. The sun was in and out of clouds, forcing me to go back and forth from coat to short sleeve shirt, temperatures varying from 80's to 40's. After returning, we saw our first black bear sleeping in a tree.....precious! We had our dinner at camp and all went to the Ranger Program at Fish Creek campground amphitheater @ 8 pm. The mosquitos were everywhere and I was not able to concentrate on the topic of the day....the geology of the park. It was very interesting, what little I got to actually listen to. Sam was presented his badge as a few onlookers clapped at his completion. Back to the camp to bed down. All were too scared to go to the RR in the middle of the night....long walk and talk of not only bears, but a mountain lion in the area as well. Note: we saw a moose in a marsh on our drive too!