Tag Archives: glacier national park

September 22, 2015 Glacier National Park, Montana

Iconic Shot Marred by Forest Fire

Iconic Shot Marred by Forest Fire

Park Shots and More Mountain Goats

The east side of Glacier N. P. had a rough summer, suffering once again from the ravages of forest fires. One particularly stubborn fire has marred both sides of the Going-to-the-Sun-Road   for several miles, including the slope you can see in the background of this iconic shot of Wild Goose Island in Saint Mary Lake.

As always, click on any image for a larger, sharper version.

Looking Up to Logan Pass

Looking Up to Logan Pass

Looking Up to Logan Pass

Looking Up to Logan Pass

Falls Below Logan Pass

Falls Below Logan Pass

The road on the east side of Logan Pass is free of fire damage once you are about half way up, leaving other iconic shots such as those above unblemished.

Many Glacier Area of the Park

The Colors of Many Glacier

The Colors of Many Glacier

I made my third trip into the Many Glacier area of the park this morning once again hoping for some bears, and once again coming away disappointed.

The Colors of Many Glacier

The Colors of Many Glacier

The Colors of Many Glacier

The Colors of Many Glacier

Last Trip up Going-To-The-Sun-Road

Glacier N.P. Elk

Glacier N.P. Elk

After my unsuccessful bear hunt in Many Glacier, i headed for Logan Pass, hoping to find some mountain goats along the way.

Glacier N.P. Elk

Glacier N.P. Elk

A bull elk was escorting his harem across some of the open fields along the side of Saint Mary Lake in an area know as two Dog Flats.

Roadside Grazing Black Bear

Roadside Grazing Black Bear

A young auburn toned black bear was grazing along the same stretch of road, obviously not being deterred by car traffic whizzing by.

Coyote Heading for Logan Pass

Coyote Heading for Logan Pass

About a mile or so below Logan Pass, I encountered this handsome coyote steadily making his way up the road heading for Logan Pass. I snapped a few shots of him and proceeded on my way.

Coyote Heading for Logan Pass

Coyote Heading for Logan Pass

Looking in my rear view mirror I could see him drop back down to the side of the road after I had passed. When I stopped a little farther up the road to take some shots of the pass, here he came again, once more climbing up the bank a ways as he detoured a bit to make his way around me.

Coyote Heading for Logan Pass

Coyote Heading for Logan Pass

After taking my shots at this second location, I drove past him again, but when I stopped once more a little farther up the road, and could still see him coming my way, I dropped down behind my car on my knees to conceal myself from him, and waited for him to come by. Not seeing me, he stayed on the side of the road and I was able to get an eye level shot of this handsome fellow as he passed by.

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

More Mountain Goats

Today I was fortunate enough to find two different goats running the steep vertical cliffs above Going-To-The-Sun-Road, just below the east side of Logan Pass, in the same area that I saw the lone goat yesterday.

Forgive the number of goat shots below, but these guys simply fascinated me. I probably spent more than three hours taking hundreds of shots of them, so bear with me as I show a dozen or so of them below.

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

The shot immediately above is an enlarged detail of the image above it. Notice the placement of the hooves along the outer edge of the ledge shelf he is so nimbly traversing. That shelf can’t be more than a foot wide, it appears, and he just casually strolls along it, more than a hundred feet up.

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

A different goat on a different section of the same cliffs, same idea, the second image is an enlarged detail of the first image. Again, note the placement of the hooves on, and actually over the edge of the rock ledge. Now, he is walking carefully, not running, but seemingly with no concern whatsoever for the fact that he is way up there on the cliff face with no soft landing below. Just incredible !

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

For the image immediately above, how did he get there? And where exactly can he possibly be thinking of going from there?

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

Glacier N. P. Mountain Goat

One image of a goat on safe terrain. Fascinating animals !

Tomorrow I leave Glacier National Park and head down the highway a bit to Yellowstone National Park, hopefully for some nice bull elk shots. Stay tuned.

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September 17 – 21, 2015 Return to the Lower Forty-eight

Glacier National Park Mountain Goat

Glacier National Park Mountain Goat

Back in the USA

September 17th

I broke camp at Meziadin Provincial park around 9 AM and headed east on Route 37 to Prince George. The last 100 miles of Route 37 was nothing special, unlike the rest of that highway, and Route 16 East to Prince George was the same. Of course, the steady all day rain and grey skies didn’t help matters as far as great scenery goes.

Arrived at a pretty new Walmart Superstore right on the highway at the western edge of Prince George, and since I was pretty much out of everything, provisions wise, I stocked up on essentials, not knowing when i would have the opportunity to do so again. Since it was getting dark, I decided to do a Walmart boondock and settled in for the night.

September 18th

After a decent night’s sleep at Walmart, I proceeded east on Route 16 to Jasper and turned south on the spectacularly beautiful Icefields Parkway to Route 1 and Lake Louise. Unfortunately, the Icefields Parkway, under low hanging clouds, fog, and rain, loses a lot of it’s luster and I managed to travel it’s entire length without stopping for even one photograph. Hoping to get some autumn shots of Lake Louise with fall colors, I settled in at the overflow camping area just south of town on Route 1 for the night, hoping the weather would improve overnight.

September 19th

It didn’t ! With the weather remaining terrible, I left Lake Louise and traveled south on Route 1, through Banff, and on to Calgary, a city I will religiously avoid traveling through in the future. I felt like a rat being forced to run a maze, trying to get from Route 1 to Route 2 in this city’s confusing, poorly signed, heavily congested system of roadways. By the time I finally made it out of Calgary and was headed south on Route 2, after three days, the weather finally cleared and it was an uneventful trip to the border crossing at Carway. I had no problem at all with the crossing, just the normal fruit, veggies and firewood , and booze, questions and I was through and back in the lower forty-eight.

Around 4 PM, I arrived at Johnsons of Saint Marys Campground, on the east side of Galcier National Park, a place I have stayed in many times before. I paid my $78 for two nights and headed up the hill to their fairly tight, fairly unlevel campsites, that do, however, have a superb view across the valley of the mountains of Glacier National Park. These are water and 30 amp electric sites with a surprisingly strong Verizon internet signal.

September 20th Glacier National Park

Stormy Sunrise Over Johnson's Campground

Stormy Sunrise Over Johnson’s Campground

I awoke to a spectacular sunrise and howling winds, indicating that a predicted stormfront was moving in.

Stormy Sunrise Over Johnson's Campground

Stormy Sunrise Over Johnson’s Campground

Taking advantage of the morning’s decent, though very windy weather, I headed up to Many Glacier hoping to get some bear shots, as i have had quite a bit of luck there in the past. This summer’s dry conditions have produced a very poor berry crop and there were no bears to be seen this morning, so I headed back home around noon hoping to watch some football on TV.

Didn’t happen ! I have no idea how strong the winds were blowing, but the motorhome was rocking and the slide toppers were in danger of being ripped off, so I was forced to bring in the slides and lower the satellite dish before it was destroyed by the gale force winds. Welcome back to the lower forty-eight !

September 21st

By morning the winds had diminished and the rain had set in. Having a lot of image processing to do and blog work to catch up on, plus facing an October 15th deadline to file my 2014 taxes, I almost looked forward to a day in the rain to try and get some of this work done.

By late afternoon, tired of working at the computer and finding the skies clearing, I hopped in the Prius and took a drive up Going to the Sun Highway to Logan Pass.

Unreachable

Unreachable

And I am so glad I decided to do so. On previous trips here I have gotten many nice mountain goat images, but have never had the opportunity to find them high up on the cliffs, where they live out a good portion of their lives, safe from predators.

As always, click on any image for a larger, sharper version.

Glacier National Park Mountain Goat

Glacier National Park Mountain Goat

This evening, just as it was getting dark, I came across a lone ram, just about all the way up to Logan Pass, and before it became just too dark to shoot, was able to capture a few images of their incredible cliff hanging abilities.

Leap of Faith

Leap of Faith

Just mind boggling how easily they traverse this impossible landscape … and you can see from the first vertical photo above, that there would be no chance for survival if ever there was a misstep. I certainly hope I get another chance over the next few days to catch this guy up there again, perhaps with a little more light to work with.

 

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October 12, 2013 Road Runner RV Park, Espanola, N.M.

Finally got around to doing a little needed maintenance on the motorhome, nothing major, just little nagging things like the slight drip from the water heater and a tiny leak coming from a bad male end of my water hose. Otherwise, once again spent the entire day going through old unprocessed images and deleting image files to free up space on the hard drives.

Glacier NP grizzly

Glacier NP grizzly

As I warned in the last post, to add a little color to these otherwise bland posts ( while I wait for the feds to get their act together ), I will share with you newly uncovered, old, images as I sort through thousands of old, unprocessed downloads.

Glacier NP blonde grizzly

Glacier NP blonde grizzly

Glacier NP blonde grizzly

Glacier NP blonde grizzly

 

 

 

 

 

 

These grizzly shots were taken in Glacier National Park  earlier this year.

Glacier NP blonde grizzly

Glacier NP blonde grizzly

The weather here in New Mexico remains about as perfect as it could possibly be, low 40’s at night for great sleeping weather, with blue skies, sun, and 70’s during the day. Sure wish I could be exploring Flaming Gorge, Arches, Mesa Verde, and Canyonlands instead of processing old images inside the motorhome with conditions such as this. Also hope this unforgivable nonsense ends before the cranes and geese return to Bosque del Apache in November.

August 19, 2013 Trip to Waterton Lakes National Park

Decided that today was the day to zip up to Waterton Lakes National Park ( Canada ).

Blonde Grizlzy on alert

Blonde Grizlzy on alert

 

 

Couldn’t help myself and drove into many Glacier ( since it is on the way ) to check on any early morning bears.

 

 

Vehicle challenged cow moose at Many Glacier

Vehicle challenged cow moose at Many Glacier

 

Had a very close call on the road back out of Many Glacier when a cow moose trotted full speed down a hill toward the road ( from my left ) keeping her eyes on me as she came close and not watching for traffic approaching her from the opposite direction. A small motorhome was approaching from that direction and it looked like a collision was unavoidable, but the moose, at the last second saw the motorhome, reared up on her hind feet and turned, all in one motion, and retreated back up the hill. She stopped at the top of the hill as if trying to figure out what just happened and then retreated back in the woods.

 

Osprey Family

Osprey Family

 

Weather was great and traffic up to the park almost non-existent. On the drive in, I had to stop for a shot of an osprey family on their nest.

 

 

 

Paid my $7.80 park entrance fee and poked around the small tourist trap village for a bit, then checked out the in town campground. Campground appears quite nice for what it is, in town, and would be able to handle big rigs, sites fairly close together, but appeared well kept and clean.

Prince of Wales Hotel, Waterton Lakes N.P. Canada

Prince of Wales Hotel, Waterton Lakes N.P. Canada

Took some shots of the Prince of Wales Hotel and then headed out to Red Rock which happened to be the only place you could go since the other main drive ( Akamina Parkway ) in the park was closed for construction. Didn’t find any wildlife or breathtaking scenics going to Red Rock, so decided to head back to Glacier.

Not much question that the Glacier Park portion of the International Peace Park is where you want to be.