Part 21: Hungry Horse Reservoir and Glacier National Park


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The Trip

From Hungry Horse Dam we headed south along the west side road to see the sights and find a place to camp for a few days.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

We headed south along the west bank road and found a nice campground that was deserted.  Our camp at Lakeview had, not surprisingly, a lake view.  The weather turned against us with cold rain and wind and we spent two days here.

On the second day when it finally stopped raining we grabbed our cameras and headed to the lake.  The peaks across the reservoir in the Bob Marshall Wilderness were covered in snow the previous morning, but it was gone today.

A higher peak to the south still had a frosting of snow from the previous day's storm.  We decided to head further south on the west bank road.

South of our campsite we encountered some kayakers out on the lake.

I am not sure if this is the same group of kayakers or whether these fellows went down the falls.

Further south the sky cleared a bit allowing nice views of the Bob Marshall peaks.

A few miles later we discovered that the road was closed due to a land slide.  Looking west from the closure we could see the previous waterfall at the end of the canyon.

Heading north from the closure, the sun broke through and allowed us to see the distant peaks.

The island in the lake might be a great place to kayak camp assuming you are willing to brave the 'skeets.

Kathleen was creating a panorama with her Fuji XH-1 camera.

The camper was sitting skewed on Thor and inspection revealed that we likely bent the center cross member on a bump.

We spent two more nights in Hungry Horse at a campground closer to the dam.  The weather did not really cooperate, so we headed into Columbia Falls for drain/fill, store stop and shower.  From there, we headed north and encountered this field ablaze with color.

We continued north along the Flathead River toward Bowman Lake inside Glacier National Park.  The cloud layer was low enough to touch the top of the peaks.

We arrived at Bowman Lake late in the afternoon.  The clouds produced dramatic, if subdued, lighting.

A bystander was nice enough to offer to take a photo of Kathleen and I with Bowman Lake in the background.

The canoe launch area at Bowman Lake has a nice gravel beach.

No amount of wishing was going to get us better light.  We retired to the camper for dinner and a movie.

The following morning dawned clear so we headed to the lake shore for a photo or two.  Kathleen's camera is capable of creating panoramas in the camera.  This is Bowman Lake with a 270 degree view.

We only spent one night at Bowman Lake.  The following morning we broke camp and continued north to Kintla Lake near the Canadian border.  Our path followed the Flathead river.  The morning sun and clear skies gave us great view of the cliffs and peaks to the east.

After 15 miles of very pot-holed dirt road we arrived at Kintla Lake and were treated to an awesome scenery.

The lake continued to the base of the cliffs.

This fellow and his wife were returning from a trip in their kayaks.

The following morning, Kathleen arose early and went outside to get this nice reflected view in the calm waters of Kintla Lake.

There was much less snow on the peaks this morning that the previous evening.

Kathleen spotted these flowers in bloom and got a nice closeup of the fresh bloom.

The next morning, we left Kintla Lake and had to suffer the pot-holed trail to get back to the bridge that spans the Flathead River.  Once we hit the west side road, we headed north.  Our path took us nearly to the Canadian border.  Both Bowman and Kintla lakes are visible on the GPS display.

Our path to Tuchuck camp went on a narrow, exposed, off-camber trail cut into the face of an eroding cliff.  Across the ravine we could see the results of a large landslide or possibly an avalanche combined with a landslide.  This area had burned recently and it is likely that the burn scar became unstable and slid taking with a huge amount of timber with it.

Our campsite at Tuchuck was right next to a small stream and the water was giving us a nice serenade.  Later in the evening, we spotted a male deer and named him "Tuchuck Buck" in honor of the cheap wine.

We were the only people in the camp so we had our choice of parking locations. Our desired spot next to the stream was a somewhat off-level requiring a bit of lego work to make it acceptable to us.

We spent seven days in this area.  That fact, alone, speaks volumes about the beauty of the region.  Should your travels bring you to the Kalispell area, you must put Hungry Horse and Glacier on your "must do" list.

Tomorrow, we continue west on the dirt toward Idaho.

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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2019, all rights reserved.
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