After dropping Kayleigh off at the airport I headed to Glacier National Park for my solo part of the trip. I was a little nervous to be alone for a week in such a big, beautiful place.
I knew that I would be hiking in bear country alone. I thought I might get sick of myself. And most importantly, I wouldn’t have anyone to share this beauty with. I was determined to have a good time though and to enjoy my own company.
I arrived at my campground in the early afternoon. I successfully set up camp and then we headed to the local dog park!
The dogs had a blast playing with all the other pups and I chatted it up with some of the locals.
The following day I headed into the actual park and oh my goodness!! Glacier is referred to as the Crown of the Continent and know I can see why!
For my first day in the park I decided to hit up the Visitor Center and to drive the Going to the Sun road. The road had just opened up the week prior since it is closed most of the year due to all the snow! It is a 50 mile road that runs east to west, dividing the park in half. I started on the westside which starts out along Lake MacDonald. Then it follows along a beautiful light blue river as it slowly climbs up into the mountains. Next you hit the loop which is where it really gets magical. You drive on the side of a cliff while climbing higher and higher until you reach Logan’s Pass. All along the road are waterfalls! After the pass it’s a decent down into the eastside of the park. You pass St. Mary’s Lake and end up in the town of St. Mary’s. Then you turn around and do it all over again! Except it’s completely different because you are seeing everything in a whole new way!
It took the dogs and I the entire day to do the drive. Both had their heads out of the window the ENTIRE time! We all got out several times to walk around, dip our toes in the lake and to read all about the different areas of the park! The day flew by and it was one of my favorite days of my stay here in Glacier!
For day 2 in the park I headed out by myself since most National Parks don’t allow dogs too many places. I made sure throughout this trip that I only went on heavily trafficked areas so I didn’t find myself in a wildlife predicament. Even though I carry bear spray and wear a bear bell you can never be too careful when solo hiking! I woke up early and hiked the Trail of the Cedars and to Avalanche Lake. It was a beautiful hike along a river! And it was indeed heavily trafficked 🙄
After that I headed home to relax with the pups! That night we had the most interesting neighbors ever check in right next to us! Meet Gladys!!! The pet goose!! She’s 12. Sophie and Gonzo lost their minds in excitement!!
For day 3 I knew I wanted to spend some time with the puppies and after some research I found that the town of Whitefish had one of the top rated dog parks in the country! So we headed up there and the pups had the time of their lives! After that I got dinner and drinks at Bonsai Brewing Company! Sooooooo gooood! 🤤🤤 Oh! and we stopped at Sweet Peaks to get some chicken flavored ice cream!
On day 4, which happened to be the 4th of July it was pretty rainy! I was going to go to Big Fork for the famous parade but didn’t really want to get soaked so the dogs and I relaxed at camp all day. That evening we were getting a little stir crazy so we headed back up to Whitefish where they have some off-leash trails! It was still pouring but I held out hope that it would clear up! While after waiting in the car for 30 minutes and eating my delicious sandwich from The Wich Haus it finally cleared up enough to get out on the trail! I attached bear bells to the dogs and we were off! Sounding like Santa Claus was coming to town! We went to a beautiful overlook and I don’t think anything makes the dogs happier than hiking off leash!
On day 5, I went back into the park to hike Hidden Lake and St. Mary’s Falls. Total it was just shy of 10 miles!
Hidden Falls is a great trail right behind the Logan’s Pass Visitor Center. The park was feeling moody on this day so everything was covered in a fog! It was otherworldly! I hiked on a snowfield which was an interesting test for my balancing skills; if you know me you know I’m seriously the most clumsy person ever! Then I was rewarded with the most beautiful view of Hidden Lake and we had a little mountain goat visitor 🥰
St. Mary’s Falls was a beautiful hike that took me by three different falls and along the shore of St. Mary’s Lake and through a burnt forest! Such a great hike!
For my 6th and final day at Glacier I hiked probably the most famous trail in the park; Highline! FOURTEEN MILES! I was so worried that the trail wouldn’t be open by the time I left! But on July 4th they opened her up!
It was the absolute best hike I have ever been on in my life! It is a 8 mile hike along a cliff side to the Granite Chalet. Some people turn around here. Others opt to hike up 1500 feet to Grinnell Glacier overlook which is what I did. It is .6 miles of pure hell on the way up but the view at the top is worth it! Thanks to everyone who cheered me on up the hill! I made sure to return the favor on the way down because no matter who you are it’s a struggle! Then I decided to take The Loop trail 4 miles down to the shuttle which would then take me back to my car! By the time I made it to The Loop trail I only had less than 2 hours to make it to the shuttle. It was ALL downhill and I have bad knees 🤪 I was going as fast as I possibly could while others were literally running past me to catch the shuttle in time! At one point I heard something move right next to me in the forest and got so scared I tripped and fell 🥴🙄 I thought it was a bear… smooth… ha! I also ended up terrifying the man behind me so badly that he also tripped and fell. Sorry Jay! Clearly I know exactly how to react to a bear. After that we decided we should get the bear spray out and into our hands! We LOUDLY chatted the rest of the way down! Didn’t want to sneak up on any bears! So glad I didn’t have to do that section solo because others said they had spotted grizzlies along the way 😱
Anyways, Highline Trail was perfect! Hiked along a cliff, through waterfalls, over a snowfield, through fields of wildflowers and pines, got to see glaciers, alpine lakes and mountain streams, the views were spectacular, there was lots of wildlife, and the friendliest people! It was THE highlight of my trip and I have been on such a high ever since!
Glacier, you were perfect!
#106 – So thankful that National Parks exist. I can’t imagine not be able to experience everything that I have this past week.
#107 – Having counter space in my actual home.
#108 – Having a dishwasher in my actual home.
#109 – Having a washer and dryer in my actual home.
Can y’all tell what I’m missing 🤣
“We must trust nothing but the facts; these are presented to us by Nature, and cannot deceive.”