Tag Archives: Montana

Pine Creek Falls | Montana

A few miles south of Livingston, Montana, is Paradise Valley. East of route 89 is a National Forest recreation area called Pine Creek. From the east-most parking lot is a trail that follows Pine Creek upstream. There is an elevation gain of about 460 ft up to about 6100 ft. The trail is often rocky with some tree roots. The trail is about 2.5 miles total out and back. The 100 ft falls tumbles down the rocks and under a simple foot bridge.

Glacier National Park, part 2

by Jim and Melanie

Please see our Part 1 post on Glacier National Park.

That Thursday morning, Independence Day, we celebrated in one of the magnificent parks in our great nation. The breathtaking scenery, and sometimes breathtaking hairpin turns on the Going to the Sun road, kept us moving toward the east side of the park. The other three nights of our stay were at the Rising Sun location.

On the mountain side south of Rising Sun, pockets of snow still clung in the crevices. This snow patch created a shape that looked like an airplane to us.

From the parking lot at the visitor center, the red buses filled with passengers to tour the park. Many people prefer to have someone else do the driving so they can concentrate on the scenery.

Join us on our walk at Logan Pass and the boat ride on St. Mary Lake.

Glacier National Park, part 1

••• by Melanie and Jim

Between travel time to get there and days to soak in the sites, some of the wonders on our own continent require extended holidays to appreciate them. In the last few years we’ve had more time to travel than we had before, allowing us to enjoy Yellowstone and Grand Teton parks in Wyoming, as well as the Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam in the southwest.

More than a year ago we began talking about visiting Glacier National Park in Montana. If we were going that far, we would go “a little” farther and travel into Alberta, Canada, into the Banff National Park area. From our town, it’s more than 20 hours’ of driving time to get to Glacier. We know our limits, and decided to fly most of the way, and then to use a rental car to get around.

On July 3 we left Iowa, this time to national parks of the northwest. We flew into Spokane, WA. It’s possible this wasn’t the best choice, and we’d encourage travelers to check other airports for ticket prices. However, it ended up working out fine for us.

Because of the two hour time zone change, from Central to Pacific time, we arrived late morning. After a stop at a Cabela’s sporting goods store to buy hiking poles, we made our way across Idaha and into Montana, arriving through the west gate of Glacier in the early evening.

We checked into our motel, the Village Inn at Lake McDonald. The building is older, the units unimpressive both outside and inside. Ours had a kitchenette, which we did not use.

If you ignore the building, however, and turn around, the vista is more impressive! This, literally, was the view from our doorway.

The next morning Jim captured the sun rise over the peak of the mountain.

After the sun rose, a mist settled for a short time, giving a more ethereal look.

Come with us as we travel along Lake McDonald along Going to the Sun road.