Only a few months late... the final leg of my Epic Road Trip: Glacier National Park.
I'm a psychopath when it comes to mountains, so despite the fact that we had a day to get from Bozeman, MT to Spokane, WA (a 400 mile trip), I decided we had to add Glacier National Park in. We wouldn't have time to hike, but we'd have time to take the rumored-to-be-stunningly-incredible Going to the Sun Road through the heart of the park. Just a 271 mile detour for a total of 671 miles in one day. NBD.
We had to wake up at 6 AM and I was a bit nervous that these two wouldn't make it...
Also, who wants to wake that up? But I was planning on getting a breakfast sandwich from the awesome Bozeman Food Co-Op, so I was determined. It was worth the extra 15 minutes, too... if you're in Bozeman, make sure you get this. A biscuit, a fried egg, and cheddar. SO. GOOD.
And then, we were off!
The Going to the Sun Road was just as beautiful as promised. It's a small, 50 mile-long, two-lane road that takes you from one side of the park to the other, climbing up to 6,646 feet at Logan Pass (where you cross the Continental Divide) before heading down again. The road is very narrow and windy, but don't worry, Mom, I definitely drove extremely carefully. It's open from mid-June to mid-September, so we got through near the end of the time it was open. A week or two later, it was closed with heavy snow!
See the line on the left mountains? That's the Going to the Sun Road.
The mountains in Glacier National Park are quite dramatic because of all the glaciers for which it's named. The glaciers carve away at mountains as they move, so the peaks are much more jagged. They're actually not that high -- by Western standards, at least -- only six of them are more than 10,000 feet tall.
I have to say, though, in the interest of "keeping things real," that the area surrounding the park, particularly to the west, was very isolated and there were more than a few nasty stares that Sourabh got when we stopped at a gas station. We felt uncomfortable driving through the area. It was really odd, since it was the only time we felt like that on our entire trip. For that reason I'm not sure we'd go back to Glacier, but it was a stunning place to visit.
And that concludes my Epic Road Trip posts! Let's see, it's only been, oh, four months since I
By the way, I was contacted about a cool website that allows you to take an interactive, virtual drive down Highway 1 (AKA the Pacific Coast Highway, which I took from San Francisco to LA). It's a neat website -- check it out if you're interested in the route!