Met up with Chains45 in Thompson Falls late in the afternoon. Found a free campsite on the Bull River about 50 miles south of Yaak. No pix - cloudy, gloomy. Hit the road the next morning with clear skies and abundant sunshine. First stop of note was Yaak Falls on the Yaak River. Stream flows in the area were seasonably low, but the Falls were still scenic.
There were rumors afloat that the Dirty Shame was closed. Untrue. Met Gloria the owner, and, after a free cup of coffee, a tour of the remodeled interior, and some local history, she took our pix. You may notice that Uly riders tend to be "mature" and prone to over-packing.
I had been advised by an inmate, also "mature" (Dale the old Fart) to seek out Hensley Hill. A five mile long, twisted, one lane gravel road running up to about 5,000 feet led to this view:
A little rocky for tent camping, but what a view.
We departed Yaak on Hwy 508. On the map, the road looks pretty begign. Holy crap! The twisties through the mountains are so tight that they don't show up in map scale. A bit of Uly heaven as these beasts ride on rails through this stuff, even fully loaded. Too much fun riding for pix.
We came out near Rexford and rode south down the the west side of Lake Koocanusa to Libby and then to Kalispell where we parted company. Chains45 had to get back home and I headed to Whitefish to see my oldest daughter and 2 grandsons. While the kids were in school, I headed for Glacier Park to ride the Going To The Sun Highway, cuz I've never been there either.
The start of the really good stuff:
Climbing higher, as into the clouds:
For a moment near the top, the clouds parted:
A little further up the road, constuction is underway. It's one lane, follow the pilot vehicle. If the guy in front of me would have driven off the mountain, I'd have been right behind him.
Logan Pass Visitors Center - fog & snow:
Going down the mountains was a real treat. One lane, greasy mud for about a mile.
The east side of Glacier is a completely different terrain - high plains:
When it says "Open Range", be aware. The road from St. Mary on the east side of Glacier is a twisted one, but you have to take it easy. There were several instances with cattle that were not so law-abiding and a horse out for an afternoon stroll.
The next day, I traded two wheels for no wheels and ventured out fishing on Whitefish Lake.
Got Google? One of the Google Guys has a cabin here:
Main house up top, lakeshore house below. Heaven forbid you have to walk all the way up the hill for a beach towel.
Fishing sucked, so it was time for some little guy football at the base of the Swan Range Mountains:
Another day of quality time with my daughter and grandsons, and it was time to ride home and go to work.