Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

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Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby Fairbanks142 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:58 am

Here are pics from August 2019. We started at Bowman Lake on 8/24, then up to Hole in the Wall on 8/25, Upper Kintla Lake on 8/26, and then out at Kintla Lake on 8/27.

This trip was exactly 25 years since I had last been to Bowman and Hole in the Wall. (We had camped two nights in July 1994 at Bowman, and day hiked up to Hole in the Wall, so getting back up there and camping at HOL had been on my bucket list!)

Other than the first picture below of us taking a break on the shore of Bowman Lake on our first day, all of the rest of the pics are from Hole in the Wall and beyond on 8/26 and 8/27.

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I have no pics from Sunday 8/25. It was one of the most challenging backpacking days I've experienced. Not because it's a challenging hike from Bowman Lake up to Brown Pass and then over to Hole in the Wall (which it is), but because we had heavy, cold, steady rain all morning through miles of chest-high thimbleberry. I've never been so wet, and it was cold. On the steeper ascent up to Brown Pass, a thunderstorm came up from the lake and passed right over us. We had taken a lot of breaks, so when we finally got up to the Brown Pass campground it was around 6pm. We were cold and tired. We thought about just camping there, but it was gloomy, wet and muddy, with no views (it's really one of the worst campsites in the park)...so we pushed on for the last couple of miles of traverse over to Hole in the Wall. And we were glad we did.

Monday 8/26 we woke up in Hole in the Wall to a beautiful day. We hung everything out to dry and planned for a late start to let our gear dry out and enjoy Hole in the Wall. It turned into an even later start when a huge grizzly and her two almost-adult cubs showed up about 20 yards from the food prep area. We spent the next hour or so watching them meander around the Hole in the Wall meadows.

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From one of the worst backpacking days the day before, Monday 8/26 was one of the best ever. With the morning bear show at Hole in the Wall, then an amazing hike up over Boulder Pass, a long stop for lunch just over the pass, a beautiful hike down to Upper Kintla Lake, and a gorgeous night enjoying the stars on the beach at Upper Kintla....it was an amazing day.

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The morning at Upper Kintla Lake on 8/27, then the hike out to the foot of Kintla Lake, was a beautiful blue-sky day.

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Best trip ever? Until next time....
Last edited by Fairbanks142 on Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby teapot57 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:14 pm

Thanks so much for taking the time to write up a trip report! Your Bowman to HOL day sounded miserable, but what a payoff with not only the bear sighting but the scenery in the next stretch. We did HOL to UPK in 2018, and it is definitely one of my most memorable days of backpacking. Varied terrain around every corner and indescribable beauty. Reading your report makes me want to go back! Thanks again for sharing.
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Re: Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby paul » Mon Feb 10, 2020 9:12 am

Thanks for posting. I enjoyed the pictures and the story. That second day must have be rough, I'm glad you got rewarded in the end.
We are in the mountains and the mountains are in us. - John Muir
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Re: Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby tibber » Mon Feb 10, 2020 9:32 am

I wonder if that was Molly that you saw. She and her little cubs were hanging around that area in 2017, maybe this is a new batch you saw. We decided to name her after Wendy's mother because she had two kids. Good thing she didn't have three cubs or her name would have been Meradel :lol: .

Anyway, what a miserable second day but glad you got a nice payoff.
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Re: Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby mattB » Mon Feb 10, 2020 2:13 pm

Thanks for a great trip report and pics, glad you were able to go from the depths of despair to the glories of Glacier!
I was also on that 2018 backpack that Teapot mention, and it also makes me want to see those places again,
now I just need to figure out how to do it but avoid the "I'm not dead yet" hiking!! :-)
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Re: Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby McKee80 » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:14 pm

Great report! We had a similar crappy day for our hike from BOW to HOL. That stretch coming out of Bowman was like a car wash. I’ve never been so wet. Glad you pushed on. The hike between Brown pass and Boulder peak is one of my favorite areas I’ve ever hiked.
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Re: Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby Fairbanks142 » Wed Feb 12, 2020 8:04 pm

Thanks all, glad you enjoyed! This is the time of year when the pics look extra good. (-:

Also Sean, a while back I put some other notes and pics of the backcountry sites from this trip on your site: http://bcsites.herokuapp.com/bcglacier/map/
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Re: Bowman, Hole in the Wall, Upper Kintla - 8/24-27/2019

Postby McKee80 » Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:19 pm

Thanks!
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