Friday, September 17, 2010

September 15, 2010 Going To The Sun Road

We got an early start this morning, after a healthy breakfast of Dunkin Sticks and coffee. We headed for Highway 2, around the lower part of the park. The leaves are changing and many trees are a bight shade if yellow. Most of the highway is outside of the park and some skirts through the edges of the park. We took our time and enjoyed the ride, got some pics of mountain goats, walked a couple of short trails, and looked at more of the most beautiful scenery in the country. West Glacier is a small community on the western side of the park. Lunch was at a small restaurant just before the entrance. Going To The Sun Road crosses the middle part of Glacier National Park through the mountains. Construction on the road started in the late 1800’s and has been a continual effort since. Snow, avalanches and rock slides have damages the road every year requiring the all year, every year repair. Currently, construction crews work on stone guard rails along the edge of the road. There is a 6 to 8 % grade going to the top at Logan’s Pass. We arrived at Logan’s Pass and found a parking spot, went to the visitors center and walked a short way to the trailhead behind the center. The trail leads up the remaining mountain to a glacier where you can touch and walk on it. It is about a 2 mile hike up there so we decided not to go. We have both seen and touched ice before. We instead, sat and watched the people go by and enjoyed the cool crisp air. I was surprised not to see goats at this elevation. As we were leaving the parking lot Randy spotted a ram on the mountain across the road. We stopped and got several pics and watched him until he disappeared into the woods. The decent was spectacular in indescribable beauty. Beauty, however, does not replace the fear of falling off on that road. It’s truly a nail biter. The truck door now has permanent fingernail marks in it. The 2 roads described in these writings will forever be imprinted in my memory. That night we watched the stars come out over the mountains.
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