“You’re off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, So… get on your way!”
This Saturday I visited Glacier National Park. This park is located in the northern part of Montana and crosses over into Canada. It covers over 4000 square km of parklands and looks like a scene out of Jurassic Park.
Montana… or Montaña, means mountain in Spanish, and is well suited to the region. Vast jagged peaks rose out of nowhere, lakes and pines dotted the landscape, and the smoke from nearby wildfires made the place feel mysterious and haunted.
Everyone piled off the bus (mass tourism at its most obvious) and flocked to the first lake we came across. Numerous stones were skipped and zillions of photos were taken. I’m surprised a new mountain didn’t grow out of the lake from all the stones we through. There’s an observation of the impacts of tourism haha.
This trip was the first organized group tour I’ve been on. The organization was fantastic, however so fantastic it didn’t allow for much freedom. Let’s just say the shepherd likes to herd his sheep, and herded we were. Worked well for the Asian participants who obviously love that kind of travel… It just made it hard to really get amongst the solitude and wilderness the area had to provide. Especially when every beautiful thing you look at is also coupled with a geeky group of tourists.
Benefits of this kind of travel however meant we got to drive up the famous ‘going-to-the-sun’ road in restored 1930’s open-roofed vehicles. This road is the only one that crosses right through the heart of the national park and provides a true insight into what it is like. We travelled right to the top know as ‘Logan’s Pass’ and hollered and joked our way through the journey. With the wind in our hair and plenty of good company it was hard to not love life! Even our guide was stoked since she spends most of her days driving retirees up the mountainside. Although having us on-board also proved mischievous after I managed to get my GoPro camera ‘accidently’ glued to the roof. The poor camera-mount didn’t want to leave (and subsequently stayed forever more) Whoops….
THE DREAM TEAM:
The scenery was unbelievably stunning and reminded me so much of New Zealand.
It makes me so patriotic about home and it’s not until you leave that you begin to consider that maybe home is the best place on earth. We have the mountains, the rivers, the lakes… We are really lucky. People travel miles and miles and miles to see this stuff and we have it in the backyard.
But in the words of the famous (and very loved over here) Flight of the Concords….