A Great Vacation: A Photographic Exploration of Glacier National Park
Travelling to Glacier National Park
My wife, Michelle, took a travel nursing assignment at a hospital in Billings, Montana, so that our family could visit some of the most beautiful places in the United States. We got to visit Yellowstone National Park with our 2 teenage girls, Kieran and Dorthea, but they eventually had to go back to Texas for the start of band/color guard camp.
The next time my wife had a long weekend off, we decided to go see Glacier National Park by ourselves. We packed up our minivan and made the drive across Montana to the park. We drove west on I-90 through Bozeman then turned north on I-15 and went up through Helena. Just past Wolf Creek, we turned onto Highway 287 and kept driving north all the way to Choteau and hopped onto Highway 89. We kept driving north until we reached St. Mary, where we entered the park.
Driving the Going-to-the-Sun Road
From the town of St. Mary, we entered the park. We stopped at the Visitor's Center and learned a lot of interesting information about the park, the mountain range, and the glaciers. We also learned about some of the local history and more about the wildlife found in the park.
When we left the Visitor's Center, we travelled west on the Going-to-the-Sun Road through the park. The first attraction we drove past was St. Mary Lake.
For many miles, we climbed in elevation, all the while navigating switchbacks and tunnels until we made it to the Logan Pass Visitor's Center. The views were absolutely stunning even though there was a lot of haze from forest fires in the region. There were plenty of pullouts to park on, flowers, roadside waterfalls, and wildlife to see such as marmots, ground squirrels, mountain goats, and deer.
Saying Goodbye to Glacier National Park
We made it down out of Logan Pass and drove our way past Lake McDonald. Eventually, we ended up out of the park in Kalispell, where we spent the night at the Red Lion Hotel downtown. It was a very beautiful hotel.
When we left the next morning, we got to see how smoky it really gets when there are forest fires in the region. While driving out of Kalispell back to Billings, Montana, the smoke was so thick you could barely make out the vehicle driving in front of you. All in all, though, our trip to Glacier National Park was absolutely amazing and I can't wait to go back to explore the rest of the park.
© 2019 Billy W Mitchell