Up early for a ranger led hike to Avalanche Lake. The meeting place was at the trailhead where there were bathrooms and a picnic area. There were a lot of parking places so I was very surprised that we got one of the last parking spots…at 8:30 in the morning! A large group assembled for the 5 mile hike. Our ranger did a great job pointing out the different types of trees and rocks along with evidence of fires and avalanches.
It was a beautiful walk through huge forests and past rushing streams. After a while we were rewarded with the most amazing sight. A serene, high mountain lake fed by 7 or more waterfalls. I wish that my pictures could do it justice. It was just wonderful to be there. The kids took their shoes off to walk in the water. Brrr….
There were chipmunks running all around and Sean spotted this Stellar Jay. I didn’t know what kind of bird it was but Sean never hesitated in its identification. Guess reading the Audubon Guide to North American Birds paid off!We had received some good news…the Going to the Sun Road opened less than 12 hours before. We were going to be able to drive the entire length of the historic scenic highway on its opening day for 2014! What a road!!! At first we followed a river but then the road began to rise. It seem like we had only gone up for a few minutes and when we turned (another) corner, the river looked so far below us. The road curved and climbed up the mountains.
We passed waterfalls coming from the snow melt, got up to the snow line until we reached the summit at Logan’s Pass. The snow was well over our heads. This was July 3rd!!! It is fun to be able to play in the snow when it is 80 degrees outside!
We start down the mountain and discover Lake Mary. The turquoise color is so vibrant.
We exit the park so that we can drive north to another entrance. The area of the park called Many Glaciers can’t be reached from other roads in Glacier. Once there we find another grand lodge perched on another turquoise lake. There was a park ranger that gives a guided tour of the hotel. I don’t have to be asked twice!
We are a long way from our cabin but the drive back through the Blackfoot Indian Reservation is beautiful.
. It was getting late and the kids were getting hungry but when we were only a few miles from the West Glacier entrance, I looked up a hill that we were driving by and thought I saw a mountain goat. Dave stopped the car and we got out to see if there really was a mountain goat. Well, it wasn’t just one mountain goat but a whole group of mothers and babies. They were climbing a hill right next to the road. Our hunger was forgotten while we watched these absolutely adorable babies.
What a great way to end a long day!!