Glacier National Park - Day 12

Today is Mary’s sixty-first birthday. We had planned to do a long hike, but she decided she had rather go fishing,, go to Lake Bowman and stop by the Polebridge Mercantile for a few pastries. Bowman Lake is in the north western part of Glacier National Park. To get there, you either hike a really long way or drive to Polebridge and go down a nasty 4-wheel drive road for about eight miles.

We loaded fishing poles and Mary’s birthday present (a loaded fishing tackle box) and headed to Polebridge where our first stop was the bakery inside the mercantile store. Our next stop was to fish along the North Fork of the Flathead River. We did not catch a thing, but it didn’t matter, Montana rivers are so beautiful with crystal clear water and colorful rounded rocks, just looking at them is a great way to spend a day. Next stop was Bowman Lake.

DSC07824The road to Bowman Lake is deliberately rustic to keep the crowds away - it was not working today. The lake is beautiful as is the campground. Like the rivers, the lakes are crystal clear with small colorful rounded pebble beaches. We took a short hike along the lake (eating thimbleberries that we picked while walking) and then skipped rocks on the lake before heading back toward West Glacier. On our way out of Bowman Lake a red fox ran across the road in front of us. Other than deer, that is the only large wildlife we saw. We did find lots of thimble berries though.

This evening we had dinner at Lake McDonald Lodge to celebrate Mary’s birthday. Lake McDonald Lodge is the oldest lodge in the park. It was here before the Road to the Sun was built. People who visited the lodge before the road was built in the 1930’s came to the lodge by boat - a full day boat ride across Lake McDonald.

After dinner we went and filled the truck with diesel. Finding fuel in Montana can be difficult so we wanted to fill up this evening before pulling out in the morning. We saw another fox on our way into the campground tonight. It sat on the side of the road waiting for me to take its picture and I couldn’t find the camera. Finely it got up and sauntered into the woods.

This afternoon we watched a man and woman from Delaware try to get their RV into their campsite for almost an hour. They had the road through the campground blocked for much of that time. Six or seven people from the campground came down to offer advice and help get the RV in the site. It reminded me of our first RV trips. This evening, we hitched up the RV so that we will be ready to roll in the morning. The truck had to be hitched to the RV at an angle and on an uneven surface. We nailed it the first time. Mary started laughing - in every RV park it seems that there are always a few old guys who want to watch everyone park and hitch up because so many people have a hard time doing both tasks. We have gotten pretty good at both and it is funny to watch the old guys who come out to watch two women park or hitch up. They always just get up from their chairs and go inside as if we were a real disappointment to them.