"Could I have this dance for the rest of my life?" - Anne Murray

Friday, August 19, 2011

Goofy Hikers

That's us. We are not experienced hikers and the idea of a hike is not the same as the real thing. I really wanted to take a hike in Glacier to access some of the quiet places you can't get to by the one main road (The Going to the Sun Road, which is spectacular but crowded).  So I picked out a modest hike to start our hiking experiences: the Avalanche Lake hike that starts at the Trail of the Cedars.  But by the time we got there, there was no parking at that trailhead even though it was pretty early in the day.  After driving up and down the road a bit we finally found parking at McDonald Lodge, poked around there a little and settled on a short hike up to McDonald Falls and back, called the Johns Lake Loop. The trouble was that the only ways to get from the Lodge to the Loop were either the road or the horse trail, so we wisely picked the horse trail over the road. But we couldn't even find that trail from the minimal information on the map, so we hiked the wrong way for awhile. Once we found it, it was a stinky and not very scenic couple of miles.  But we did finally get to the falls, which was a lovely sensory reward in every way.

By then I was ready to head back, but we didn't want to take the stinky trail again, so we took the road. The walk was kind of stressful as there was no shoulder to speak of and traffic was a little heavy. The sensory experience was not inspiring, as you can imagine. It was much shorter and we did get back to the where we started in one piece. All in all, a goofy hike. Not what I imagined.  If there is a next time at Glacier, we'll take the lovely shuttle to Avalanche Lake trailhead.

By the way, we did carry our bear spray with us. The bicyclers and park staff we saw commended us on our well placed, accessible bear spray. The only wildlife we saw was a hummingbird. 

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