Father and Son Road Trip- 9 States, 2 Months, 6500 Miles!

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by TonyBKK, Sep 2, 2012.

  1. VietHorse

    VietHorse Long timer

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    Recalculating... recalculating.... HCMC-Vietnam :)
    How long do you think the trip feeling would last with you among lots of things to think of everyday!?
    Damn, I think that would be forever. Especially this is the trip with your lovely son. For sure, he will never forget an amazing trip with his beloved daddy.
    Great write up and photos Tony. :clap
  2. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Hey! Thanks for solving that mystery. Weird that I've never seen bugs like that before; from your link it sounds like they're quite common. I'll forward the link to my son; I know he'll be happy to find out what they are. :D
  3. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Thanks Viethorse! Neither my son nor I wanted the trip to end- it was such a fantastic summer. I was very sad to leave him but look forward to more great adventures in years to come! :D
  4. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    I was very impressed that Kristhawee could accomplish a 4-5 mile hike like that! Rewarded him with ice cream at the Jenny Lake General Store and then we went to check out the visitor center-
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    The Jenny Lake Visitor Center is particularly nice- it's in a beautiful old CCC building and there are sofas around a big stone fireplace where you can sit and read books.

    Headed back to camp-
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    I thought (hoped?) that Kristhawee would be tired from the hike and that maybe we could take a nap.... He looks a bit tired, sitting on the bear box in our campsite-
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    Nope! He met some nice kids from New York and wanted to play play play! :clap Good lord he has mad energy!

    There was a ranger talk about wolves that evening-
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    Kristhawee was hanging with his new friends from New York- really nice family!
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    The kids found a baby robin that had fallen out of its nest. They were so concerned and fascinated by it and wanted one of us adults to put it back in the nest, which, as I understand it, you're not supposed to do.

    Just then the nice Ranger who had given the wolf talk came by and I asked her what we should do. Her sage advice: "Let it be". So with the Ranger's backing we insisted that the kids leave the baby bird where it was. They took it upon themselves to build the baby bird a nest of sorts and covered him up with grass to keep him warm. In the morning the baby bird was gone and a quick thinking parent told the kids that the mommy Robin had come down in the night and picked up the baby and put it back in the nest. Ah, don't you just love happy endings? :evil

    The temperature dropped quickly when the sun went down- a big fire kept us nice and warm :kumbaya
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    Once we were snug in our sleeping bags we started Kipling's story "Toomai of the Elephants". What a fantastic story- check out the first paragraph:

    "[SIZE=+1]Kala Nag (Black Snake), a wise old elephant, has been taken up to the Garo hills to help in the yearly drive to catch wild elephants and break them in. His driver, Big Toomai, takes no pleasure in the work, but Little Toomai, his ten year old son, delights in the camp life. When the wild tuskers are being driven into the Keddah (the stockade) Little Toomai sits high on a post shouting and waving, and when a driver drops the end of a rope, he slips down among the feet of the elephants at peril of his life and throws it up to him. [/SIZE]"

    My son loves this story (and so do I), but he only lasts a few pages before he passes out. Sweet dreams my beautiful boy- I'll see you in the morning! :ricky
  5. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Gooo morning from Jenny Lake, Grand Teton National Park! Gee, does somebody need to pee?? :lol3
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    It was so nice having the General Store walking distance from our campground- fresh milk, bacon, cereal and coffee for breakfast!
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    Bacon!! :dg
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    Yet another beautiful day!
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    Northface Nebula- our home for the summer. Big thanks to my good friend Jeremy who lent us his tent, stove, and a sleeping bag :D
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    Map of Jenny Lake Campground-
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    If memory serves, we were in site 13. Fantastic campground- one of my favorites on this trip.

    I needed to print and send a fax so we rode to Jackson and hit the beautiful Teton County Library-
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    Kristhawee LOVES libraries- he picks the books and I read them.

    They had some toys too- he was definitely enjoying himself-
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    Then, for something completely different, we went and saw a movie. Kristhawee got to choose from Ice Age, Spiderman and Batman. He chose the bat-
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    I quite liked the movie, but it really wasn't a kids flick and was more violent than I would have liked. Still, my son seemed to enjoy it.

    After the movie we wandered around town a bit, did some shopping and had dinner at my son's favorite place-
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    We got back to camp just after dark, Kristhawee was passed out on the back of the bike. Man, I really would have like to have spent another day or two in Grand Teton, but we were supposed to hook up with friends at Glacier NP and if we didn't leave the next day we'd miss them... Turns out one summer just isn't enough time to see and do all the things we'd like.
  6. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Thursday, July 25th- As much as we'd both like to stay longer in Grand Teton National Park, we must move on it we're to catch up with our friends in Glacier National Park. Another beautiful day! A bit chilly in the morning- you'll notice Kristhawee is wearing daddy's vest-
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    We need to reach Glacier National Park on Friday so the plan today is to ride about half way and camp on Canyon Ferry Lake-
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    The John D Rockefeller Jr. Memorial Parkway is just as good going north as it was going south :D
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    Leaving Grand Teton National Park-
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    The Grand Teton range stretches north quite a ways so we still get some amazing views-
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    Welcome back to Yellowstone National Park! (How many times have we re-entered the park already??)
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    Such a beautiful day!
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    Following the Lewis River north-
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    Fun road, not much traffic-
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    We'll exit the park via West Yellowstone US 191/20/287
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    I've never been to this part of Yellowstone- It's beautiful!
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    The road follows the Madison River-
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    Entering West Yellowstone! Welcome back to Montana!
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  7. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    We stopped for lunch in West Yellowstone and the nice gentleman who was running the place gave us a Montana state map and highlighted what he thought would be the best way for us to get to Glacier National Park.
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    On the road- headed north on US287
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    Approaching Quake Lake
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    Beautiful country- Hebgen Lake off to our left-
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    Zoomin'
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    The view across Hebgen Lake-
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    Our first glimpse of Quake Lake-
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    Off in the distance we can see where Sheep Mountain collapsed-
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    Wow, the whole mountain came down!
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    80 million tons of mountain collapsed in a huge landslide caused by the largest earthquake ever recorded in Montana-
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    What's left of Sheep Mountain-
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    Quake Lake is pretty interesting. From Wikipedia:

    Quake Lake (officially Earthquake Lake<sup id="cite_ref-gnis_0-1" class="reference">[1]</sup>) is a lake in southwestern Montana, United States. It was created after an earthquake struck on August 17, 1959, killing 28 people.<sup id="cite_ref-usgs_1-0" class="reference">[2]</sup> Today, Quake Lake is 190 feet (58 m) deep and 6 miles (9.7 km) long. US 287 follows the lake and offers glimpses of the effects of the earthquake and landslide and visitor center is just off the road. The lake is mostly within Gallatin National Forest.

    The earthquake The earthquake measured 7.5 on the Richter scale (revised by USGS to 7.3<sup id="cite_ref-usgs_1-1" class="reference">[2]</sup>) and caused an 80 million ton landslide which formed a landslide dam on the Madison River. The earthquake was the most powerful to hit the state of Montana in historic times. The landslide traveled down the south flank of Sheep Mountain, at an estimated 100 miles per hour (160 km/h), killing 28 people who were camping along the shores of Hebgen Lake and downstream along the Madison River. Upstream the faulting caused by the earthquake forced the waters of Hebgen Lake to shift violently. A seiche, a wave effect of both wind and water, crested over Hebgen Dam, causing cracks and erosion.
    The earthquake created fault scarps up to 20 ft (6.1 m) high in the area near Hebgen Lake and the lake bottom itself dropped the same distance. 32,000 acres (130 km<sup>2</sup>) of the area near Hebgen Lake subsided more than 10 ft (3.0 m). Several geysers in the northwestern sections in Yellowstone National Park erupted and numerous hot springs became temporarily muddied.<sup id="cite_ref-usgs_1-2" class="reference">[2]</sup>
    Hebgen Dam and creation of the lake

    Hebgen Dam, built in 1917, is a concrete core and rock fill faced structure that sustained severe damage but continued to hold. Repairs were completed on the dam spillway in a few weeks. The landslide, which occurred downstream from the dam, blocked almost all the flow of the Madison River which began to fill in the void upstream from the slide. In less than a month, the waters had created what is now known as Quake Lake. The lack of a reliable water outlet for this new lake forced one of the largest mobilizations of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers ever commenced in the western U.S. Before the new landslide was breached by the quickly rising waters, a spillway was constructed to ensure erosion and potential failure of the natural dam would be minimized. Within the immediate vicinity of the earthquake and resultant landslide, a few dozen cabins and homes were destroyed. Overall damages to buildings and roads were minor with damage costs placed at 11 million dollars in 1959. Aftershocks up to 6.5 on the Richter scale continued for several months.<sup id="cite_ref-usgs_1-3" class="reference">[2]</sup>
  8. Parcero

    Parcero Mundial

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    I haven't been through Yellowstone on my bike in several years. These pictures bring back great memories, and are sparking a western US trip plan. What a great experience for your son!
  9. KennyT

    KennyT Adventurer

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    What an awesome trip! Great pictures...
    Still thinking aout your chili dog from day two!
    Thanks for sharing,
    Ken
  10. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Heading north on the 287 towards Ennis it looked like we might get wet-
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    Looking east towards Big Sky-
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    Somehow we got lucky and managed to get through without getting wet :D

    Ennis was a cute little town and I was tempted to stop, but wasn't sure how long it would take to get to Canyon Ferry Lake, so we pressed on.

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    North of Ennis it was rolling hills, dry grasslands and expansive views-
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    A long stretch of construction slowed us down some, but at least it was dry-
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    Woohoo! We reached Canyon Ferry Lake in the late afternoon. It wasn't a big ride, but for some reason I was beat! I originally thought we'd stay at the KOA there, but upon arrival realized that it was really set up pretty much exclusively for RV's. Not a nice place to pitch a tent, plus they didn't even have a pool. The really nice lady at the reception told us that there was a county campground just down the road, right on the lake. Cheap too! :D
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    The Land Yacht at Canyon Ferry Lake, Montana. Gee, wonder if it would float? :evil
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    There was a store at the KOA so once we got our tent set up we walked back up the road to get some food-
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    Thanks for holding my beer while I snap a pic little man :D
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    The KOA didn't have much selection and I hadn't had a Bud in... well... long enough that I forgot what shyte beer it is! :lol3
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    Cheers!

    Kristhawee was in the mood to fish-
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    There was a really nice retired couple from Washington in an RV near us and they befriended my son and gave him some worms, and lo and behold, he caught his first fish!!
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    Check out the size of that Walleye! :lol3

    I haven't filleted a fish in years and didn't have a proper knife but the really nice couple invited us to dinner and we added our fish to theirs and enjoyed a fantastic Walleye dinner, of course with s'mores for desert :dg :kumbaya

    The Silos Canyon Ferry campground was wide open and very exposed- not a place you'd want to be in bad weather, but it certainly did make for a beautiful sunset-
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    Good night! Tomorrow we ride to Glacier National Park! :clap
  11. newride

    newride Been here awhile

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    amazing. Thanks for sharing this. truly awesome. happy for you both!
  12. Mastros2

    Mastros2 Adventurer

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    Great report! You are an amazing Dad taking your kid on this trip. Wow. Keep it coming. :D
  13. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Friday July 26th we woke up to some rain and threatening skies. I think this was the first time our whole trip that we bothered putting on rain gear-
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    The weather gods were with us- shortly after we hit the road the clouds disappeared and the sun reappeared-
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    Beautiful roads all the way from Helena to Glacier National Park-
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    Despite the rain in the morning, it ended up another beautiful day!
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    Beef country, USA! Can't tell from the pic, but these were some good looking cows!
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    Nevada Lake, Montana-
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    Snow covered mountains way off in the distance!
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    Stoney's Kwik Stop was a fun place to stop for a drink and a snack-
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    Where's the beef? :rofl
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    Salmon Lake, Montana-
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    Would have like to have spent a night around here, but we needed to get to Glacier to catch up with our friends.
  14. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Riding past Salmon Lake State Park-
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    Montana was pretty green compared to Wyoming and South Dakota-
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    Gettin there! :ricky
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    Some nice twisties on Hwy 83 :evil
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    Swan Lake-
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    Approaching Big Fork, Montana-
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    Entering West Glacier!
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    Glacier National Park and the Going to the Sun Road!
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    Yippee! We made it! Welcome to Glacier National Park!
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    We were meeting our friends at the Fish Creek Campground on the northwest shore of Lake McDonald. What a view!
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  15. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    While waiting for our friends to return to camp we walked down to McDonald Lake to see if we could catch anything-
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    Kristhawee fishing on McDonald Lake, Glacier National Park-
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    We're developing a bit of a routine- if you can't catch em, swim with em! :evil
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    I taught Kristhawee how to skip rocks- not as easy as it looks but he was getting the hang of it-
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    My silly happy boy :thumb
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    Back at camp my son took the camera and snapped some pics-
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    The campground hostess came by to check on us- 5 year olds have a funny perspective on the world :lol3
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    We found a nice secure place for my boy to sleep :rofl
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    Went off to explore the campground-
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    Some nice trails linking the different sections of the campground-
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    Nice healthy forest, seems the dreaded pine beetle hasn't arrived here yet-
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    Finally our friends arrived! Kristhawee was happy to have some kids to play with. After dinner we enjoyed a nice fire and smores for dessert :kumbaya
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    Good night my beloved boy! Sweet dreams and see you in the morning! [​IMG]
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  16. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Good morning from Fish Creek Campground, Glacier Lake National Park, Montana!

    Seems my son's friend Gabriel woke up on the wrong side of the bed... Something about the wrong kind of cereal I think... :evil
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    Nice to see the kids getting along-
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    Kristhawee and Gabriel-
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    Laila and Kristhawee-
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    Happy Days! :clap
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  17. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    The kids played while the parents packed. Gabriel and Laila shared their bike with Kristhawee-
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    Laila waiting (patiently?) for her turn-
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    We've been on the road three weeks now and I figure any clothes that I haven't worn yet, I probably don't need, so I give my good friend Jeremy my Thai Ramasoon Black Magic Tattoo shirt and we mug a pose-
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    The plan today is to hit the Visitor Center at Apgar so that Kristhawee can pick up a Junior Ranger handbook, then follow our friends up the Going to the Sun Road as far as Logan Pass.

    We're packed up and ready to roll!
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    The visitor center at Apgar Village is awesome! So much to see and do!
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    The kids had a lot of fun playing with the puppets-
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    My friend Jeremy had done a pretty tough hike with his brother Howard the day before- here I think he's recounting the adventure-
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    Picked up the Junior Ranger book for Kristhawee- I regret not starting this sooner. I was under the impression that it's a lot more work than it really is and didn't think we had time to do these until now.

    [​IMG] Become a Glacier Junior Ranger!

    How Do I Become a Glacier Junior Ranger?
    Glacier Junior Ranger badges are awarded to children who visit the park and attend a ranger-led program along with correctly completing at least 5 of the activities in our Junior Ranger booklet. Booklets are available from the park visitor centers at Apgar, Logan Pass, and St. Mary. When children are finished with the booklet, they can take it to any of these visitor centers to have a ranger check their answers and to receive their badge.






    Laila and Kristhawee playing with the finger puppets in the gift shop-
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    I swear we could have spent the whole day just in Apgar Village, but I was really keen to ride the Going to the Sun Road and Kristhawee was looking forward to playing in snow again.
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    A beautiful day- not a cloud in the sky!
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    The Going To The Sun Road starts off good, and just gets better!

    The road officially received its name, "The Going-to-the-Sun Road," during the 1933 dedication at Logan Pass. The road borrowed its name from nearby Going-to-the-Sun Mountain. Local legend tell the story of the deity, Sour Spirit, who came down from the sun to teach Blackfeet braves the rudiments of the hunt. On his way back to the sun, Sour Spirit had his image reproduced on the top of the mountain for inspiration to the Blackfeet.
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    Cruising nice and slow as our friends are driving ahead of us- you can see Howards minivan off in the distance-
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    Near Avalanche Creek-
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    The first of many waterfalls-
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    Wow! Following the McDonald River we get our first good look at the Livingston Range-
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    The Going to the Sun road gets quite narrow and twisty once it starts to climb and is off limit to large trucks, trailers and rv's
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    Kristhawee is excited to see so much snow! I need to keep my eyes on the road!
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    We pass through some cool tunnels-
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    I like to honk the horn for good luck when I go through tunnels but damn the horn on our Land Yacht is loud! :eek1
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    Wow that's a lot of dead trees- I guess the pine beetle has reached Glacier NP too :cry
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    It was a very clear day, but for some reason many of my pics came out looking hazy...
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    Looking down in the valley we can see the way we came along the McDonald River-
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    Breathtaking alpine scenery-
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    It's a warm day and there's still a lot of snow to melt, so there are waterfalls everywhere-
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    This Going to the Sun road is only open in the summer and is very well built considering the tough environment it has to survive-
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    What a view!
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    There were a few sections of construction but nothing too bad-
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    A good view of the road cut into the mountainside-
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    Between avalanches, rock slides and the seasonal freezing and thawing it must take a lot of work to keep this road open-
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    Earlier in the summer a big landslide had completely blocked the Going to the Sun Road- They're still cleaning up the mess-
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    Looking back the way we've come-
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    This section is called the Weeping Wall- What an amazing road!
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    Approaching the Triple Arches-
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    These arches were built by hand way back in the 1930s!
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    Approaching Logan Pass-
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    Woohoo! We made it to the top! Welcome to Logan Pass, elevation 6646ft (2025m)
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  18. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Tons of bikes up at the Logan Pass Visitor Center-
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    Kristhawee is getting so good at identifying the different brands and can read "Ducati", "Yamaha", "KTM" etc. Reading is fun!! :evil

    The parking lot was full to cars so we had to say a hasty goodbye to our friends who continued east, while we packed a picnic lunch and hit the Hidden Lake Trail that climbs up from the Logan Pass Visitor Center.
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    Kristhawee leads the way!
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    But he runs out of gas pretty quickly today...
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    No worries, we have all day- take a nap on the boardwalk if you like-
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    Proceed on all fours if you must...
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    He was really hamming it up- goofy boy!
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    Nice spot for a nap? :rofl
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    Signs of life! :clap
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    Yeah! We reached the snow!
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  19. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    Somebody wants to battle!! :lol3
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    We were told it would be cold and windy up here. Quite the opposite in fact!
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    What a view!!
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    That big rock looked like the perfect place for a picnic-
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    Try and keep your feet dry Kristhawee!
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    Made it! Father and son on the Hidden Lake Trail, Glacier National Park, Montana, USA!
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  20. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Secret Soi Rider

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    You couldn't ask for a better spot for a picnic!
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    Father and son above Logan Pass, Glacier National Park!
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    After lunch Kristhawee was re-energized!
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    He went off to explore-
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    Trying to find a way across this mountain stream-
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    Off he goes to play in the snow some more-
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    Dad takes the opportunity for a quick nap :evil
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    Don't go too far son!
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    It's getting a bit late and we need to get back to the visitor center before it closes if Kristhawee is to earn his Junior Ranger badge.
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    Back at the Logan Pass Visitor Center we stop to enjoy a Ranger singing nature songs-
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