I don't even know where to start because this was unlike any vacation I've taken. I only had access to a phone at night via wifi, and it was actually amazing. I was surrounded by the best people in the most scenic location. I didn't grow up hiking or going to national parks. This hasn't changed my mind on camping, but it has changed my mind...or maybe opened my mind to other things.
Earlier this year, I had an idea to invite all of Jake's family to a house in Glacier. We sent out an email, and let people decide based on their comfort level etc. We booked an airbnb in Whitefish, and as time got closer, we had his Aunt Kathy, and her two daughters, Caitlin and Carissa. They are both married and have 3 little ones between them. Plus, Jake's sister and brother. We were set. I booked a couple of things and found some hike ideas etc on blogs from Pinterest. Jake's brother worked in Glacier for a few years, so he knows the park quite well.
Anyway...let's get into it. On day one, we stopped in Apgar Village/Lake McDonald. It's the lake you see with the colorful rocks. We went super early, so there was a bit of a haze.
After that, I picked a "beginner's hike". I would say this is a beginner's hike if you're a professional hiker, but for someone like me, I'd say it was moderate for sure. It was a 5 mile in and out hike to Avalanche Lake with a 600-700 elevation. We were sweating...a lot! On the way out we saw a black bear right on the side of the road!
The next day we did ALL of Going to the Sun Road. You do need to get a pass for this now, and it wasn't easy, but we got them. I don't know if I've ever been more scared on a road. I couldn't even look over for some of it because it was so high up. Our first stop was Weeping Wall.
Our next stop was Logan Pass Visitor’s Center where we saw these guys. This is the funniest pic ever though. They were so used to people they come right up looking for food!
Then we took off for the Hidden Lake Hike. We saw a bighorn sheep on the hike!
Our other quick stops were Jackson Glacier and St. Mary’s Lake.
We got matching shirts in St. Mary. I wanted to get them for a cheesy picture with just Jake, Dillon, Olive and myself...but the whole family was down which was awesome! We also got huckleberry milkshakes! I booked a boat tour in Many Glacier, but we were running late. Jake was going too fast in the park and got a ticket from a park ranger. Due to that, we missed seeing a mama grizzly and her babies. The rest of the group saw them. SAD! They call them "bear jams" there. It's when the cars are jammed because a bear is on the road but more likely it's because someone spots a bear, and everyone stops to take pics and video. That's how we saw our grizzly...on the way home after the boat ride! See the video on my Instagram!
The next day was on and off raining. Our airbnb was in the Whitefish Mountain Resort, so the guys went on the Alpine adventure course while we went shopping in Downtown Whitefish.
A few people in the group left the next morning, and a few of us went back into the park super early and hiked Upper McDonald Lake but continued past the trail on the other side of Lake McDonald up to Trout Lake Trailhead. Jake and his brother decided to have a moment and dove in in their undies. It was kinda amazing!
Everyone else in the group left the next day other than Jake's brother. We drove out to East Glacier where he used to work at Glacier Park Lodge. We headed to Two Medicine Lake with a quick stop at Running Eagle Falls...and on the way back saw a MOOSE! See the video on my Instagram too!
Some of the Food we liked in Whitefish:
Jersey Boy’s Pizza
Montana Coffee Traders on Central in Downtown Whitefish