2015 Montana, Calgary Stampede, Icefield Parkway travel blog

Hungry Horse Rsvr 1 - our trail at Lion Lake - a...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 2 - There were some straight portions, but no...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 3 - Doris did really well on this hike...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 4 - at the end of the hike, looking...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 5 - see, there she is - I do...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 6 - back at Libby now, looking across the...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 7 - watching someone fish while patiently waiting on...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 8 - the Hungry Horse Dam across the South...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 9 - the lake side of the dam

Hungry Horse Rsvr 10 - the outflow of the dam - the...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 11 - the power station - the dam generates...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 12-the spillway selects water from the proper lake level...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 13 - we stopped at the Huckleberry Patch in...

Hungry Horse Rsvr 14 - a mural on one of the buildings...

Logan Pass 1 - we were behind some antiques on our way...

Logan Pass 2 - another one

Logan Pass 3 - and this beautiful old Packard

Logan Pass 4 - the peaks are in the sun as we...

Logan Pass 5

Logan Pass 6 - heading through the only tunnel on the west...

Logan Pass 7

Logan Pass 8

Logan Pass 9 - one of the many waterfalls we encountered

Logan Pass 10

Logan Pass 11

Logan Pass 12

Logan Pass 13 - a marmot on the wall - can you...

Logan Pass 14

Logan Pass 15 - water literally pours out of this wall

Logan Pass 16 - snow beside the road

Logan Pass 17 - we're getting up in altitude now

Logan Pass 18 - the inevitable construction, even on the GTTS -...

Logan Pass 19

Logan Pass 20

Logan Pass 21 - we made it!

Logan Pass 22 - the parking lot at the visitor center which...

Logan Pass 23 - the visitor center behind the snow

Logan Pass 24 - a ground squirrel alongside the sidewalk

Logan Pass 25 - one of the views at the visitor center

Logan Pass 26

Logan Pass 27

Logan Pass 28 - another waterfall on the way down

Logan Pass 29 - now that's a long grade

Logan Pass 30

Logan Pass 31 - looks a little different on the way back...

Logan Pass 32

Logan Pass 33 - some of the GTTS road

Logan Pass 34 - one of the many Red Buses we saw

Logan Pass 35

Logan Pass 36 - another of the antiques - notice it has...

Logan Pass 37 - Doris noticed this guy in the river and...

Logan Pass 38 - notice his rack is just starting to grow

Logan Pass 39 - and then he is gone - just a...

Logan Pass 40 - Lake McDonald looking north

Logan Pass 41 - looking south

Logan Pass 42 - coming back through Hungry Horse on the way...

Flathead Lake Trip 1 - downtown Kalispell

Flathead Lake Trip 2 - pretty flowers all over

Flathead Lake Trip 3

Flathead Lake Trip 4 - had to stop for a horse crossing!

Flathead Lake Trip 5 - some of the road on the east...

Flathead Lake Trip 6 - some of the lake

Flathead Lake Trip 7 - the road separates the lake from the...

Flathead Lake Trip 8 - one of the many cherry orchards we...

Flathead Lake Trip 9 - coming through Polson

Flathead Lake Trip 10 - looking east from the west side now...

Flathead Lake Trip 11 - lots of haze today

Flathead Lake Trip 12 - one of the campgrounds on the outskirts...


We have done a bit more touring this week as our time is winding down in Columbia Falls. Tuesday morning we made a trip to the Hungry Horse Dam and Reservoir located just a few miles from Columbia Falls. The dam used a little over three million yards of concrete and is 564 feet high with a width at the base of 330 feet. The reservoir is 34 miles long and has 170 miles of shoreline covering 6,800 surface acres and containing 3.5 million acre-feet of water. It dams the South forth of the Flathead River which generates 428,000 kilowatts of power (enough for over a quarter-million homes) before joining the Middle and North Fork of the Flathead River and flowing into Flathead Lake a short distance from here. That water then goes through 18 more dams on its way to the Pacific Ocean, generating over five billion kilowatts of power.

Wednesday we finally made the trek up the Going to the Sun (GTTS)Road as they now have it open up to the top of Logan Pass from the west side. The east side down to St, Mary is supposed to open this weekend. We will wait until we return from Canada to do that portion while we stay at St. Mary. For those that don't know the GTTS road is restricted to a length of 20 feet, 8 feet wide including mirrors, and 10 feet high. Some of the turns are too tight for longer vehicles, has overhangs that will chop your roof off and the lanes are too narrow for wide vehicles to meet each other. They did have a picture in the paper of a motor home about 30-35 feet long that got a ticket last week for making the trip! I sure wouldn't have wanted to be driving it. Luckily the overhangs are on the east side or he would really have been in trouble!

It was a great trip with wonderful views. We wanted to do this section as we had never been up to Logan Pass this early in the year and wanted to see the snowy peaks. We were not disappointed! AND Doris saw a MOOSE!! Driving this road I don't get to see many specifics but she saw this moose walking up the river just a little ways from the road. Fortunately, I had managed to get some space between us and any following vehicles and was able to stop and back up to a parking area. I then went down near the river shore and took a few pictures. Doris talked to him and he looked right at us before heading on down the river and then was gone up the bank. It's one of those chance encounters that happen. It didn't last longer than 90 seconds and we were most likely the only ones to see him.

Thursday we headed for the 150+ mile trip down and around Flathead Lake which is the largest natural freshwater lake west of the Mississippi River in the contiguous United States. Of course that doesn't consider Red Lake and Lake in the Woods in Minnesota which is considered North of the Mississippi since the Mississippi River begins in central Minnesota. We were a little disappointed that you couldn't really see much of the lake from the highway on the east side and that the air was so hazy, it really diminished the view from both sides. We did have a good time just enjoying the drive and Doris did a lot of salivating as we passed a gazillion cherry groves about a month removed from picking season! Hopefully they will still be coming in when we return to Montana the early part of August.

Friday was spent watching the College World Series. Fortunately our Gators managed to stem off elimination and will play Virginia tonight to see which goes to the finals to play Vanderbilt for the national championship.

Next Friday we will make our last post from Columbia Falls as we head to Canada next Saturday.

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