Whitefish, Montana

Visiting Glacier National Park has been on our bucket list for years. Back in March we decided this was the year to do it. “We’ll go in September, when it’s less busy, the weekend after Labor Day.” I booked the condo, at the Lodge at Whitefish Lake, for four nights, starting Friday, September 11. Great. Booked the flights to Kalispell, MT, for our kids, six tickets total, from New York, Atlanta and Boulder, respectively. “Hey, what’s this extra security fee?” Great. They’re all flying across country on September 11. (Good one, mom.)

Turns out, the flights were fine. Adam and Meredith flew out of Newark (where Flight 93 originated 14 years ago), where they participated in a moment of silence to honor the victims and heroes of September 11, 2001. While the kids were air bound, we drove the 7-hour trek from Idaho Falls up to Whitefish – in two cars, David and Eric in David’s truck, with Megan and I following in my car eight car lengths behind. I didn’t want to lose them! I made David swear he would not speed past 85 on the freeway (I-15 North) or pass three cars at once (his specialty) on the long stretch of two-lane highways (Highway 141, 200 then 83) in Montana that lead north through the Flathead Indian Reservation to Flathead Lake and up to Glacier.

I didn’t take any photos of the scenery on the drive up, since, uh, I was driving. And we gunned it. Stopped for gas once and then, after about 5 hours of driving, pulled over at Seely Lake, MT, for lunch at the ‘Chicken Coup’. Yum! (Well, we filled our gullets anyway.) Our driving route to Whitefish took us right past the the Kalispell Airport, and sure enough, four of the six of our clan beat us there. We had no room for them in our cars anyway, so they waited for the last two of our group to arrive on their flight and then the six of them took the free airport shuttle to the Lodge twenty minutes away.

We all converged on the resort about the same time. Here is a view of the lake from our condo:

Whitefish Lake

Whitefish Lake

and the Restaurant, Patio Bar, and pool at the Lodge, overlooking the lake …

IMG_1782

Friday evening we grabbed dinner in Whitefish. Downtown was hopping and the restaurants were jammed. We were lucky (just winging it) to get a table for 10 at Loula’s Cafe, a couple of blocks off the main drag. The food was good, appetites were sated, and after dinner we returned to the condo and turned in early. (Most of us, anyway. That’s my version, and I’m sticking to it.) Hey! We (I) had a big agenda planned for Saturday. Going into Glacier National Park for sure, hiking ….

Concerning Saturday… We could book our group of ten on one of those Red Bus Tours that escort you to magnificent sites throughout the park while seasoned park veterans provide informational and historical narration!

What a fabulous way to see the park! Let's do it!

What a fabulous way to see the park! Let’s do it!

The famous Red Busses serve as an “ideal way to see and learn more about Glacier National Park. In fact, the vintage 1930s buses are part of the human history and heritage of the park. As much of the park’s scenery is vertically oriented, the roll-back tops are perfect for providing full views of the stunning mountains, and the area’s signature Big Sky. The guides are seasoned park veterans, who are here because they love the park and enjoy sharing the park with visitors.” (to quote information in the link)

Book our group on a Red Bus tour? Of course we didn’t. Although a group of us did see one parked at McDonald Lodge.

Here’s two more photos offering you a foreshadowing of what was to come on Saturday….

A cat brandishing an UZZI

Huh?

Huh?

and a sour, wrinkly Bulldog you’d better beware of:

IMG_1797

So what’s this blog about, again? Weren’t you up there in Whitefish to visit Glacier National Park?

Yes, that’s the idea …

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2 Responses to “Whitefish, Montana”

  1. Paullene Caraher Says:

    I really like reading your blogs. Looking forward to some more pictures.

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