The heroine is a kind of tomboy loner, which is probably why I like the series. And after last year's centennial celebration of the National Park Service, it's piqued my interest in visiting more parks, especially since I've had an America the Beautiful pass for the past 2 years.
Speaking of National Parks, we made it to Glacier! Unfortunately we didn't have time to do more than a few short 2-hour hikes, but based on the small taste I got this summer before the wildfires decimated chunks of the park, I need to go back to do some actual hiking.
Two things I was not expecting about Glacier:
1) IT'S DROP-DEAD GORGEOUS EVERYWHERE You can seriously just take pictures at pullouts along the highways, and it looks like you've hiked in the backcountry to a secret, serene spot.
2) THERE ARE BEARS! Googling "bears Glacier Montana" before leaving was both a mistake and very educational. PSA: you can rent bear spray in the park! It helped calm my paranoia about unexpectedly encountering a grizzly or black bear on the trail... especially on the one hike I did alone, at 5am, on one of the more isolated trails, while my friends were all 40 miles away lining up to run a half-marathon. (The half-marathon had armed guys in ATVs on bear patrol.)
Before I saw the sign about bearsbeing spotted on the trail.
I did, however, see a bull moose! By then there were a few other people on the trail. The moose, with his huge gore-tastic antlers, stopped all foot traffic for about 20 minutes on the trail while he moseyed around finding his breakfast.
|Mt Baker: So close, yet so far!|
Speaking of glaciers, it's been almost two months since our Mt Baker summit attempt. Our group had three chances to summit: it was stormy and rainy on the first two, which meant the last day on the mountain would be loooong. No one made it to the summit, though some made it to the crater rim; our party had several injuries or health issues. I think we are all glad we attempted the summit, though.
The mountains are calling, and I must go... where, next?
New Zealand, actually, to visit La Otra Hermana, the nieces and nephew I haven't seen in 5 years except on Skype, and the nephew I've only ever met over the computer. They're all too young to go on the Great Walks or multi-day tramps I want to try, but I'm researching kid-friendly short hikes.
A friend recently reminded me of the Japanese term "forest bathing," and the more I think about it, the more I like the idea.
I could use some more forest bathing.