Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Well, tell us how your trip went. We all want to hear about your special experience.

Moderators: Kathy, Tara

Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Badgerhiker » Tue Sep 04, 2018 7:49 pm

I spent 10 days hiking in Glacier from July 23 to Aug 2. The weather was great, the scenery of course was even better though it did get a little hazy the second week I was in the park. I was lucky enough to see 3 grizzlies, 1 black bear, 3 moose, 16 elk, and too many goats to count. I also saw 42 big horn sheep at Logan Pass on the last night of my trip! I like to go out with a bang. 8)

July 21 Theodore Roosevelt National Park

From Wisconsin this park makes a great stopping point half way to Glacier.I had 2 to 3 hours before sunset, so I drove the loop road. I'm glad I did, the skies were gorgeous from a huge thunderstorm rolling in. Plus I saw about 200 buffalo on the short drive.
Image

Image

When I drove around the next corner another herd of buffalo was walking down the road. The buffalo calf's still had their orangish-red coats so seeing that was a first for me.

Image

Image

I have one question. If a buffalo sticks his tongue out at you first can you harass it back? :wink:

Image

When the storm hit I found a pullout to wait the pouring rain out. I think a car was broke down up the road because another car picked him up and they pulled in behind me. They must have been wondering why I was sitting there because a teenage girl ran over to check if I needed help. I explained I was hoping for a good sunset after the storm passed. It was nice of them to check on me but the poor girl got soaked. They could have waited for the rain to stop. I wasn't disappointed with the sunset.

Image

When I left the next morning I got some pictures of wild horses on the plains.

Image

July 23 Triple Divide Pass

I woke up at 5:45, made breakfast and headed to Cutbank campground. I was staying in St Mary's campground by the way. Turning onto the road to Cutbank, I saw three groups with tents and pull behind campers in a cow pasture surrounded by cows. A sign on the gate said camping $20. I guess that's better than nothing. At the trail head another guy was camping in a little teardrop camper. When I was getting ready a park employee? (he was driving a park service truck) woke him up and warned him to take off before a ranger saw him.
This was a good first hike for my trip. I wanted to do some mountain climbing later in the week so this had decent elevation and a nice steady climb to the pass. Once the trail started climbing Medicine Grizzly Lake was below me the whole time. It was a very scenic lake with five or six waterfalls flowing into it from snowfields above.

Image

Image

Image

I just hate bad hair days!

Image

At the pass I started chatting with two backpackers while they were drying their gear out. I asked how long they were backpacking for. They said how ever long it takes to get to Mexico. :shock: They were planning on doing 30+ mile days to beat the snow in Colorado. To me that sounds like a forced march vs a fun backpacking trip but to each his own.
One last pic on the way down. I'll try to post a couple more days tomorrow.

Image
Badgerhiker
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:06 pm
Location: Wausau WI

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Selkie » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:43 am

Wow! Really nice.
Glacier offers a true bounty in picturesque dead-tree photo possibilities.
I like the light on the horses' coats and the big-sky look beyond the horizon.
Great photos! Thanks for sharing, and looking forward to next installment.
:arrow:
Selkie
Donator
Donator
 
Posts: 1174
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2010 5:17 pm
Location: Chicago

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby tibber » Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:39 am

Enjoying it as well. Loved the sunset picture as well as the others. As to the bison sticking his tongue out you, I see no reason you couldn't do the same :lol:
User avatar
tibber
 
Posts: 264
Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2010 11:50 am
Location: Phoenix, AZ

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Sue Z » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:47 pm

I never heard of Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Thanks for posting that gorgeous photo with the bison!

At Yellowstone, they called those bison calves "red dogs."
Sue Z
Sue Z
Donator
Donator
 
Posts: 261
Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 7:37 am
Location: Emmaus, PA

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Jay w » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:01 pm

Nice pics! Keep it coming.

Jay
The NSA...the only people in the government who listen.
User avatar
Jay w
 
Posts: 1555
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2007 6:17 am
Location: St. Paul, MN

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Badgerhiker » Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:13 pm

July 24 Piegan Mountain / Logan Pass

I woke up to another beautiful day and headed to Siyeh bend for the hike to Piegan Mountain. The beginning of the hike was pretty uneventful except for seeing one mule deer buck and meeting a lone trail runner. I don't recommend running alone in grizzly country, so dangerous. I never heard her until she was almost on top of me. When the trail started climbing to piegan pass the views opened up and I got lucky again with some cool clouds hanging above the pass.

Image

Image

Image

After taking a break I started the climb to the saddle between Piegan and Pollock Mountains.

Image

After hitting the goat trail about 2/3 of the way up it was an easy walk to the saddle. From there I looped to the south around the steeper cliffs and it was basically just climbing through steep scree to the top. There was a slight breeze and I was able to hang out for over an hour in just a tee shirt. The top of Piegan is very unique being shaped like a crescent moon.

Image

Image

I made my way over to the lower summit looking down at Siyeh bend and took a selfie. My phone flipped the image which was weird, not sure if all selfies do that. If you can't tell, I was having a lot of fun today!

Image

After eating lunch I wasn't really looking forward to hiking 6 miles back to the car. The bend in the road by Lunch Creek looked so close I decided to go for it. Blake Passmore's book said to aim between the waterfall and the bend in the road to avoid the cliffs on the way down. This was easy to do since you can see both land marks the whole way down. I know some people hate going down scree but I have to say i'm a fan. For every step you take your foot slides two feet while taking the next step and if you slip you just sit back on your butt and pop right back up because it's so steep.
When I got below the water fall I noticed a guy with backpacking gear coming up the trail. When he got closer I saw he had no shoes or socks on! I was waiting for him to look up at me so I could comment on his footwear but he brushed past me without even looking up. What a weirdo. I assume he was going to illegally camp and was trying to avoid telling me what he was doing. At the road I hitched a ride from the second car that I saw and got my car at Siyeh bend. After making supper I headed up to Logan pass to get some animal shots. The first corner west of Logan pass had some goats nice and close.

Image

Turning around to go back to the Logan pass parking lot I looked over at the highline trail and holy smokes there's a big grizzly walking up the trail! I snapped a quick pic out the car window. The shoulder of the road was in the way but you can see his claws on one foot and I just noticed he has an old wound on his back leg. It looks like he might have a scar on his back too but it's hard to tell for sure.

Image

After parking at Logan pass I went back to the road with about ten other people and got this shot before he crossed.

Image

When he saw us he went back into the trees and right after that four hikers walked around the corner about 30-40 ft away. We yell grizzly in the trees and they take off in a sprint! We all yell STOP don't run, just slowly walk over to us. When they made it across the road the bear made a dash across the road into the trees where the Oberlin climbing trail goes. Of course people had to run over there but luckily a ranger made them back up since no one could see exactly where the bear was. He eventually ran across the hidden lake trail (getting way to close to some more people) before heading east into that vast open area.
The clouds at sunset were spectacular. When mother nature puts on a show like this you just have to feel fortunate to be there to see it.

Image

Image

A day like today is exactly why I go to Glacier. Pretty much a perfect day!
Last edited by Badgerhiker on Sat Sep 22, 2018 6:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
Badgerhiker
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:06 pm
Location: Wausau WI

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby teapot57 » Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:03 am

What an amazing day! Great report— looking forward to more.
teapot57
 
Posts: 608
Joined: Mon May 20, 2013 3:59 pm
Location: Calgary, AB

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby PeteE » Fri Sep 07, 2018 9:24 am

Great report and images!
Isn't the hike to Piegan's summit a nice hike?
Nothing difficult and a wonderful view as your pics show.
Thanks for sharing.
pete :wink:
User avatar
PeteE
 
Posts: 2259
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 12:20 pm
Location: Whitefish, MT

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Badgerhiker » Fri Sep 07, 2018 5:55 pm

PeteE wrote:Great report and images!
Isn't the hike to Piegan's summit a nice hike?
Nothing difficult and a wonderful view as your pics show.
Thanks for sharing.
pete :wink:


Thanks Pete. For anyone interested in mountain climbing, Piegan is a good one to do for the first time. Pretty straight forward route to the top and for anyone leery of heights there's really no exposure either.
Badgerhiker
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:06 pm
Location: Wausau WI

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Badgerhiker » Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:28 pm

July 25 Swiftcurrent Mountain

I woke up with plans to hike Shangri La but everything was wet from rain the night before and there was low hanging clouds covering the mountain peeks. I decided the bushwack off of the swiftcurrent trail would be to wet to do. So I decided to do Avalanche lake. Just before Rising Sun I watched a grizzly and cub feeding in the field for about 10 minutes while two groups of bicyclists road by blaring European techno music. LOL Driving past Logan pass the clouds were like pea soup but the farther west I traveled the skies cleared out. Well, I'm not going to waste a sunny day hiking in a valley. I want some epic views but where should I go? As I came up to the loop I made my choice, Swiftcurrent Mountain it is. Pete's probably slapping his forehead and groaning as he reads this. (I remember reading how much you loathe this trail)
I set a pretty fast pace and made it to the chalet in about two hours. I walk inside and start talking to the girl behind the counter and find out she's going to college 30 miles away from where I currently live. What a small world. After topping off my extra water bottle I headed up to the lookout.

Image

At the top the views were simply awesome. The fire lookout perched in the tiny summit just added to the experience. I visited with the guy manning the lookout for quite awhile. He told me about the parks fire history, the old fire lookouts on the neighboring peaks and the animals that live up there. Very interesting guy to talk to.

Image

Image

Image

Image

After passing the chalet it kept getting hotter and hotter without an ounce of shade anywhere. It was the trail that never ended! :x I think what made things worse was I hiked too fast to the summit and burned myself out. I may have been a little cocky in my abilities after climbing Piegan the day before. It's pretty safe to say if I'm ever hiking to Granite Park chalet again you'll see me on the Highline.
Back at St Mary's a huge thunder storm hit the area. For a couple seconds I was worried my tent would get knocked flat by the high winds. Yes that's hail and a stream running through my camp site.

Image

I took the next day off and laid around camp trying to stretch out my sore muscles. I forgot to tell you about the 4 twenty something guys I met on the Triple Divide trail my first day. One was yelling hay bear, one had a radio, another was blowing a whistle and the last one had a bell! And no it wasn't a bear bell it was more like a cow bell! :roll: I could say more but I'll just leave it at that. :wink:
Badgerhiker
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:06 pm
Location: Wausau WI

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby PeteE » Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:11 pm

Pete's probably slapping his forehead and groaning as he reads this. (I remember reading how much you loathe this trail)


Hehehehe!
No, heck it's ok with me if people want to hike up the Loop trail.
In your case, you had a good reason, a concrete objective--Swiftcurrent Lookout.
The Loop trail is the shortest way to get there--day hiking.

If you're fit, it's not a big deal physically.
I'm not as fit as I once was though, plus the Loop trail is HOT in the afternoon sun, and bores me to tears.

That said, the Loop trail is handy for mountaineering types who are headed to summit a peak in the Granite Park Chalet area.
Those people are all in good shape so the 2000ft gain is no big deal; they usually will be going up in the morning when it's much cooler.
So it has its uses.

I'll be walking out to the Granite Park chalet for 3 nights in the morning--probably in the rain with winds to possibly 30-40mph.
At least it won't be hot! 8)
:arrow: :arrow: :arrow:

Love the rock layers with Heaven's Peak in the background!

pete :wink:

Forecast for the area
.DISCUSSION...
Today through Sunday...A series of upper level disturbances will
cause some isolated rain showers and thunderstorm activity, with
the best chance of convective activity occurring this afternoon
and evening, and then again Saturday, in association with a cool
frontal passage. Erratic winds gusting to as high as 50 mph are
to be expected with the anticipated thunderstorm activity.
Additionally, cool air behind the front along with daytime surface
heating will provide the instability necessary for boundary level
mixing, bringing stronger winds aloft to the surface, causing
winds to gust to as high as 40 mph in association with this event.
As high pressure returns on Sunday, expect rebounding,
unseasonably warm highs, sunny skies, and light west northwesterly
winds. Fogleman
User avatar
PeteE
 
Posts: 2259
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 12:20 pm
Location: Whitefish, MT

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Badgerhiker » Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:59 pm

July 27 False Summit Dragons Tail and Mount Oberlin

I was hoping to get some nice pictures of Hidden Lake in the morning light but it was a little hazy. But that's ok because the views were still awesome plus I wanted to get a look at the route up Reynolds Mountain and hopefully spot some climbers with my telephoto lens. It was cold and windy at the saddle by Reynolds but the snow field was soft so not a problem to cross. I shared the trail with a couple goats up there.

Image

There way only one person at the false summit, a pro photographer shooting sunrise. He was a super nice guy and we chatted for about an hour about photography, mountain climbing and all that good stuff. He said the snow field next to Reynolds was frozen when he crossed it. That had to be a little sketchy. I snapped a picture of him doing his work.

Image

Me sitting on the cliff edge.

Image

From the bottom Reynolds looks very intimidating but after going down the steep side of Piegan I knew looks can be deceiving. I got to watch a group go up and they took the route I thought was the right way to go which gave me a little confidence I wouldn't get completely lost up there. :wink:

Image

After chatting with some more people that showed up I headed back to the parking lot. I was in no hurry since Oberlin doesn't take very long. I had all day to enjoy the views.

Image

After fighting my way through the mobs of tourists on the hidden lake trail I made it to the zoo of the Logan pass parking lot. I have to say after being in the peace and tranquility of the Dragons tail Logan pass was kind of like a slap to the face. Cars were circling everywhere, people were yelling about 15 Harleys came roaring in. YUCK! After getting some snacks at the car I rather quickly headed to the Oberlin climbing trail. Back to peace and quite. :arrow: :arrow: :arrow:

Image

Image

I have to say the false summit of the Dragons Tail was a great little hike. Anyone with average fitness could do it and it's so much better than the Hidden Lake overlook.
Badgerhiker
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:06 pm
Location: Wausau WI

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby PeteE » Tue Sep 11, 2018 9:21 pm

I'm really liking your report. Great images and an "attitude and outlook" that sort of resonates with me 8)
The false summit of the DT is one of the best hikes in the park for the effort required.
And yeah, the Dragon's Tail is a super place to hang out a while isn't it? :)
Stunning on a nice clear day with no wind.
Good stuff Badger!

pete :wink:

PS

Oberlin is also an under rated hike. Great views and an easy hike.
User avatar
PeteE
 
Posts: 2259
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 12:20 pm
Location: Whitefish, MT

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Badgerhiker » Thu Sep 13, 2018 6:22 pm

PeteE wrote:I'm really liking your report. Great images and an "attitude and outlook" that sort of resonates with me 8)
The false summit of the DT is one of the best hikes in the park for the effort required.
And yeah, the Dragon's Tail is a super place to hang out a while isn't it? :)
Stunning on a nice clear day with no wind.
Good stuff Badger!

pete :wink:

PS

Oberlin is also an under rated hike. Great views and an easy hike.


Thanks Pete. I agree, Oberlin is really nice too. Thanks everyone else for your comments also, I appreciate it.
Badgerhiker
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:06 pm
Location: Wausau WI

Re: Badgerhiker's 2018 Trip Report

Postby Badgerhiker » Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:19 pm

July 28 Reynolds Mountain

It was another perfect weather day in Glacier. It was less windy than the day before and the haze was gone. The route was pretty easy to follow using the climb glacier book. I needed to rest a couple times climbing through the scree. Going down scree = fun Going up scree = not so fun After the scree field I found myself trying to take the exact route in the book but finally realized there was about a 30 yard section of easy cliffs that I could climb straight up. When I reached the big cliff face I spotted the cairns leading up and to the left towards the summit. I climbed into a cloud at the summit which added to the cool factor.

Image

Image

Image

Image

The climb glacier book constantly preached wearing a climbing helmet so I picked one up on sale for this trip. I wore it for the first time today and met 8 other climbers, none had helmets. All I could think of was oh no I'm the nerdy kid who's mom makes him wear a helmet to ride bike with his friends! :oops: At least I was being responsible and safe and I probably did make my Mom feel a little better by having a helmet. When she saw my pictures she said "I thought I was done worrying when your sister stopped rock climbing now I have to worry about you too". I may have told her before my trip there was trails to the top of all these mountains. :wink: That's it for today, enjoy.
Last edited by Badgerhiker on Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Badgerhiker
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:06 pm
Location: Wausau WI

Next

Return to Trip Reports

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests

cron