Friday, July 10, 2009

Big Sky Country

We had a wonderful trip last month to Glacier National Park in Montana. Camping with two dogs is fun but also takes some planning. We generally try to go early in the season before it gets too hot, because there are obviously times when I have to leave the girls alone in the car. If it is too warm, that really gets to be a problem.
I remember one time a few years ago where I stopped at a rest area and made a mad dash in and out because it was in the 90's and even with the windows open, it was just too hot to leave the girls alone for more than a minute. I've also been known to take them with me into public restrooms ... not very often, but I've done it. Anyway, we were very fortunate with this trip because, although it started out cold, windy and very rainy, by the time we got to our destination, the weather improved greatly and was perfect for the rest of the week. The US National Parks don't allow dogs on the
hiking trails due to the crowds, and, in places such as Glacier, because of the threat of bears. Bears see dogs (especially small dogs) as prey, and I cannot even imagine what I would do if one ever threatened one of my dogs. (It's one of those things I can't even think about.) It was cool enough to leave the girls in the car while I did some morning hikes, and the scenery that exists in the national park, also exists in areas surrounding it (national forests, state parks, etc.) where I can hike with the dogs.

One of my favorite parts of the trip was the drive home along Hwy 200 which goes through a very sparsely populated area (i.e. no towns!!) I wouldn't want to have car trouble in that area, but fortunately that wasn't an issue and I just loved watching the sun go down over the vast, open ranch land with the mountains off in the distance. Our last stop was Medora, and the ND Badlands.

We took a day trip outside the park and around Flathead Lake one day, and it was beautiful! We even found a designated dog swimming beach at Yellow Bay State Park on the east side of the lake. That was fun!

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