Sunday, June 3, 2018

Springville to Glacier

For our family vacation this year we decided on a Rocky Mountain road trip. We left our Springville home--with its own impressive Rocky Mountain backdrop-- at 6:35 AM. We had a long day ahead of us having to collapse our plans for the first two days into one so that Joel could go to soccer tryouts on Friday night.

 Bear Lake

 Looks a lot like the Sea of Galilee.

Marie's great and great-great Tueller grandfathers were Swiss immigrants who did the brick work on the beautiful Paris Idaho LDS Tabernacle.

 Montpelier Idaho. I grew up on stories of Old Ephraim at scout camps.

 Unique architecture of the Montpelier Tabernacle.

 New Star Valley Wyoming Temple.

 Star on the mountain in Afton.

 "I use antlers in all of my decorating."

 Because of our collapsed itinerary we had to forego an afternoon of hiking in Grand Teton National Park.

Once upon a time I nearly sumitted Mt Teewinot with Bill, Bob, and Tom, but then a storm rolled in and we headed down. Bill taught  me how to self arrest while climbing up and down the center snow field. Climbing down, the snow gave way and I started sliding but this rookie was able to roll over and dig in my ice pick and "self arrest" into a grateful stop.

Climbing Teewinot with my brothers.

 Yellowstone in a day. Still lots of snow.

We just missed Old faithful--we saw it erupt through the trees as we drove into the upper geyser basin. While waiting for the next blow, we had an early dinner in the lodge and then explored nearby hot pots.

 It was 20 minutes over due with lots of false starts.

 Always impressive.

King of the road.

Spent the night in Bozeman

In Choteau Montana at the only gas station, my concerted efforts to wash a lot of bugs off my windshield caused me to forgot to remove the gas nozzle from my car before pulling out. It is a set $80 fee to have some one come and fix it.

 Big Sky Montana. Lots of grazing cattle, grass, alfalfa and grain on the plains with beautiful Rocky Mountains to the west.

 Sunday morning work.

 Two Medicine Lake.

 We took the 45 minute boat tour. It is still early in the season so this was the only one of four lakes now running boat tours.  We learned a lot.

 Mountain Goat


 It was interesting to learn that bears love to eat avalanche kill. When they emerge from hibernation they head for the avalanche fields to smell out any carcasses of mountain goats or other animals that were caught in the slides.

 Lower Two Medicine Lake.

 Two Medicine Lake.

 St. Mary's Lake and Valley.

 Loved the green color of glacier melt water.

 Jackson Glacier.

 The Jackson Glacier stop was as high as we could go on the Road to the Sun. Snow keeps the upper reaches of the impressive road closed for another month or so.

 We had a great hike to St. Mary's and Virginia Falls.

 Looking across the valley to our end destination--Virginia Falls.

 West end of St. Mary's Lake.

 Beautiful St. Mary's Fall.

 Marie wasn't so sure about this sitting place.

 Stream bed

 There are several other falls between St. Mary's and Virginia.

 Virginia Falls.

 We got wet.

Coming back down, a hiker told us they had seen a grizzly near where we saw the two deer. He was carrying a big stick for protection. I pulled out my bear spray. We didn't see any bears but we walked back closer together and with more observant eyes.

 Ma and pa geese with gaggle of goslings.

 Different lighting on our return

 Will thought these snow fields looked like Cinderella in white gown. I agree.

We stayed the night in Browning at Glacier Peaks Hotel and Casino. Browning is the center of the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. A photo in the lobby of our Blackfeet tribe owned hotel shows Blackfeet enjoying Glacier--part of their ancestral lands.

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