Saturday, September 17, 2011

From the Trailhead

"Give a month at least to this precious reserve. The time will not be taken from the sum of your life. Instead of shortening, it will indefinitely lengthen it and make you truly immortal. Nevermore will time seem short or long, and cares will never again fall heavily on you, but gently and kindly as gifts from heaven."

- John Muir on his visit to Glacier in the early 1890s

Some of the best scenes in Glacier National Park are only a short walk from a road or parking area. Take for instance the views across Swiftcurrent Lake from the Many Glacier Hotel. From the balcony, or the shoreline, the views are some of the grandest in the park. From a photographic point of view we were quite lucky to have thick clouds leftover from a storm that passed through the night before:

The historic boat shuttle, Chief Two Guns, awaits her early morning passengers under the gaze of Grinnell Point.

One of the more remote areas on the east side of the park is Cut Bank. From the Pitamakan Pass Trailhead we had an outstanding view of Bad Marriage Mountain under an appropriately brooding sky. Too bad the Native American for whom the mountain was named after didn't have Dr. Phil around. The mountain might have a different name now:

Our favorite area of the park is without a doubt the Two Medicine Area. Although not as popular as Many Glacier or West Glacier, and perhaps not as scenic as Many Glacier, it has a much more laid back charm than the other more popular destinations. You could think of it as being like Townsend, TN; the "Quiet Side of the Smokies". The hiking out of Two Medicine is outstanding, but the views from the parking lot are just as magnificent. Sinopah Mountain, Lone Walker Mountain and Flinsch Peak create a perfect backdrop behind Two Medicine Lake, whether in the morning or at sunset:

One of the most iconic scenes in all of the national parks is from a roadside parking area off the Going-To-The-Sun Road. The island in the middle of the photo is known as Wild Goose Island:

Over the next couple of weeks I'll be posting some photos from Glacier's spectacular backcountry.



Mama-Bug said...

Absolutely stunning scenery! Glad you had a good trip.

The Smoky Mountain Hiker said...

Thanks Mama-Bug!

Wendy said...

Just beautiful... We actually went to Glacier (for our first time) in July. We didn't get to do as much hiking as I wanted due to the snow still being a problem on some of the trails. We also had the kids, so no long trails. We did do the hike to Grinnell Lake using the shuttle boats and that was some spectacular scenery. Can't wait to see some more of your pictures!

Michael Lowe said...

Awesome photos prompting great memories. Rode my bike through the park back in 2000, with Tom Hall. Hope you have a great time. Look forward to more postings!

Margaret said...

Great post...

Steve York said...

Beautiful photos, Jeff. Makes me want to plan a trip next year.