Tuesday, November 1, 2011

September 30, 2011 Avalanche Lake & Going Off The Grid

This is the view from where I ate an incredible breakfast today, the Glacier Park Inn Bed & Breakfast in Hungry Horse just outside Glacier National Park. I highly recommend Mark & Mary's place if you are in the area. As we headed to Avalanche Lake on the Going To The Sun Road, it was beginning to look like a beautiful day.
We started our hike through the Trail Of Cedars, then off toward Avalanche Lake.
 This tree had a ferocious looking animal in it, so I took a quick picture and ran.
There were some interesting and some huge trees.
 The trail to Avalanche Lake followed along Avalanche Creek for a little while...
 ...water carving through rock...
...always willing to relax along side a creek.
 There was always a possibly great picture around every turn...
 ...the mist from the falls rose up to meet the sunlight coming down, the pictures did not capture just how beautiful this was to see.

After falling behind Chrissy as she hiked, I finally had to catch up as the trail left the creek and headed into the forest.
The hike went through some old growth forest...
...and some new forest that had tons of downed trees from the extreme winter and subsequent heavy snowfall and strong spring storms.
 By the time we got to Avalanche Lake...
...it had to be 80 degrees. Once again Chrissy assumed this position and I hiked around the lake.
 I saw a bald eagle fly across the lake but it took off as I tried to get a picture.
 So I stuck to picture of things that wouldn't move.
 These guys are practicing their fly fishing techniques today because they are going out with a guide tommorrow on a local river.
The end of Avalanche Lake had tons of trees both above and below the water line.
Chrissy, after resting on the beach, heading back through an area with lots of trees down.
 Using this downed tree as a picture frame was Chrissy's idea.
If I wasn't in a hurry to finish this blog and go to bed, I would spend more time ridiculing my fat ass about this picture. So I leave that up to you.
 The problem with these out and back hikes is that the light is different each direction...which means I have to take pictures again.
The colors continued to amaze me.
 It didn't matter if the trees were uprooted...
 ...or upright. I loved them all...
...and was amazed too.
The end of the trail. Time to head off the grid.
Thirty miles up a sometimes paved, sometimes dirt road and we are in Polebridge.
 We stopped to pick up lunch at the Mercantile.
 This place smelled so damn good because the baked goods...
 ...are definitely worth ruining the suspension on your rental car.
We had huckleberry bear claws that were the best baked goods we had on this trip.
 Further up another dirt road that made the one we took to Polebridge seem smooth...
 ...we ended up at Bowman Lake.

Once again, we relaxed on the shore. Relaxing out here is a different kind of relaxing. The scenery, the fresh air, the unseasonably warm temperatures all contributed to being so relaxed that it was possible to fall asleep even though there are bear warnings everywhere you look. Now that is relaxed.
 The drive back had fall colors...
 ...fire areas with regrowth evident...
...and a road so rough we had to stop and get out in order to drink the local sodas we bought.
 Bowman Lake was in Glacier NP just south of the Canadian border. We had to leave Glacier and drive through the Flathead NF to get back to...
 ...Glacier NP.
 We did a short hike through a fire area but there were no brochures at the trailhead...
...so as we passed the markers we had no idea what we were looking at (besides burned landscape), so we just made stuff up. A goofy end to a great day.

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