Monday, July 26, 2010

What I Did on My Summer Vacation

What I Did on My Summer Vacation: Part One

Summer vacation is a Big Deal in our family.  Throughout my childhood my family went on a three week camping trip each summer (to the same lake), our extended family came too and usually some friends would come visit as well.  When S and I met he was quickly brought on board with the ritual that is The Summer Camping Trip.  This was a must, no exceptions allowed.  We have our own ritual that allows us to indulge our love of exploring new places with our need for tradition - we go on a 10 day camping trip which usually involves at least one new place and also usually manages to include a visit to a well-loved favourite.  This year we decided to go through Idaho (new to us) to Glacier National Park in Montana (S and I were there 20 years ago but on the eastern side of the park).  We camped on the west side of the park this time by Lake McDonald and Loved it. 
The last time we were in Glacier park the gorgeously scenic Going-to-the-Sun road was closed for the season and we weren't able to drive it, S has been wanting to see it ever since and he finally got was worth the wait.

I thought these tour buses were beautiful.
There were just so many mountain peaks - you're completely surrounded.
This road was finished in the thirties and the work it must have taken to do it is awe-inpsiring.  I loved the rock work along the sides and on the bridges.

Huckleberries seem to be a big deal in Montana and so we sampled the obligatory milkshakes and huckleberry icecream.  Delicious.  I grew up on red huckleberries and only learned about black huckleberries a few years ago when we were camping at Barkerville.
We went on lots of hikes.
E spotted this guy on one of our hikes. He always seem to see things that just blend right in for the rest of us.
We walked through rapidly melting snow and fields of glacier lilies on our way up to
this lake.
Then the boys tried sliding down the snow, we were wishing we had thought to bring something to slide on.
There was wildlife everywhere...and I do mean everywhere.
When we first started this hike I was scanning the ridges hoping to see a moving speck of white - a Mountain Goat at a distance - it wasn't long before Mountain Goats started wandering in our path.  So cool.  I had no idea we'd get to see them so closely.
On the way down this mama marmot seemed quite intent on watching me, I was on a little bridge and she wanted to cross it to get to her babes.  I had to move and then she ran under the bridge and up the rocks to her babies.
We also have a new favourite family hike.  More about that later but for now there is a small mountain of laundry to do. ;-)


Jacqueline said...

It looks so beautiful! Love the family photo! Can't wait to explore that park one day. Your photos are wonderful:-)

Unknown said...

Stunning photo's. xxx

Mary said...

oh, oh, oh!!! makes me want to go there. I need to get out more!!!!
there are so many beautiful places to explore.

Erin said...

Okay, I think we know where we're going to plan a long trip to!! Glorious photos Heather. I love the one of you all looking out to the lake, I love family portraits.

Those scree slopes are awesome!! I love the mountain top geograpgy and geology. Scott & I hiked up once to Brandywine Meadows by Whistler, and saw similar alpine meadows, flowers and streams everywhere. The picture of the lilies brought it all back. What a wonderful glimpse into the types of hikes we can do in just a couple of years, with some endurance milestones for the boys!! Thanks for sharing it all!

The Apple Pie Gal said...

Amazing! Those photos sure do look like a pretty post card!

Julie said...

Looks great, we don't have anything like that in Australia!!

happyalaskan said...

Great pictures! Those marmots are hard to catch on film. Looks like lots of fun. Happy Summer!

Aaron-Paul said...

What a fantastic part of the world you live in , such stunning landscape i can almost breathe that fresh mountainous air, thanks for sharing your gorgeous photos :-)