aAs our fellow Giggers were hiking in the Bob Marshall Wilderness, four Giggers decided to go on two days of leisurely hikes in Glacier with very hot weather. We left Great Falls around 7a.m. and arrived at the Sun Point parking lot in Glacier around 9:30. We hit the trail around 10 a.m. with our first stop at Sun Point with spectacular views of St. Mary’s Lake.
We then continued on the trail to Baring Falls and the views were quite different after the fire from two years ago. In the past, the trail was more covered with trees. However, among the burnt trees we could see the lush vegetation that is now coming up. Wildflowers were still blooming along the trail, and we missed having Katie with us to give us information about the flowers. However, Beth shared her knowledge about trees.
After a quick stop at Baring Falls, we continued up to St. Mary Falls. St. Mary Falls as always didn’t disappoint, and we enjoyed the peacefulness along with the roar of the falls while we ate lunch. On the way back, we saw four moose playing in the lake in the distance. When we arrived back at the parking lot, we discovered that we were all quite dusty due to the very dry conditions.
We were going to stop at the St. Mary’s Visitor Center, but there was nowhere to park, so we continued on. The next big decision was how to get to East Glacier. The shorter way is to go on highway 49 or known as The Looking Glass Highway. Bonnie was driving, so the three others left the decision up to her. As Bonnie had been on the highway before with others driving, she knew what she was getting into and did decide to take highway 49. It is narrow, curvy highway with no guard rails, but the views are phenomenal. Bonnie hugged the center line whenever she could going 25 miles per hour or less which seemed to be what the other drivers on the highway were doing as well. We made it safely to East Glacier with a few sighs of relief. We checked into Brownies hostel. Beth and Bonnie discovered that some of their clothes got wet in their packs as the cooler leaked. They hung up their clothes throughout the tiny rooms to dry.
We visited a little gift shop across the street and were shown pictures of what can happen if you leave bear spray in a hot car. All of us have heard stories such as this but we thought it was a myth. We could actually see the car with damage as it wasn’t parked too far away. Do not leave bear spray in the back window of a hot car!
Our next stop was the Glacier Park Lodge. After walking through the lodge and visiting the gift shop, we went to the lounge where we enjoyed huckleberry margaritas which we decided tasted like very good lemonade and then ordered dinner.
When we got back to Brownies, Gail and Bonnie were told that they were put in the wrong room so the staff moved their belongings to a different room. They picked up all of Bonnie’s wet clothes and neatly folded them in the new room. It was a little embarrassing as pretty much “everything” was hung up to dry. We ended the evening with ice-cream and wine on the balcony.
After a leisurely breakfast at the Whistlestop, we packed up and headed towards Two Medicine. We met a family from Ohio in the parking lot who told us that the park ranger was checking out a bear that was spotted near the parking lot. We hit the trail for Rockwell Falls around 10 a.m. with a couple side trips to Paradise Point and Aster Falls. It was a hot day, but much of the trail was shaded on the way to Rockwell Falls. The trail wasn’t very busy; however, we did meet a family from London who were in awe of the beauty of Glacier. It had to be quite a contrast from the busyness of London.
The flowers were still blooming, and the views were stunning. There was only one other group at Rockwell Falls, so enjoyed the waterfalls to ourselves while we ate our lunch. The hike back uneventful with a little more sun. We visited the camp store at Two Medicine when we finished the hike.
On the way home, we stopped at Brownies again for ice-cream and huckleberry pie. We arrived back at Great Falls around 7:30 p.m. It was a wonderful two days of friendship, hiking and waterfalls.