Friday, August 31, 2012

A visit with oldest son.

We spent about four days in the Spokane-Post Falls area mainly to visit family.

            Here is Denny and Laura, with my very special and lovely granddaughter Ashley. This upstairs porch on their new house is "to die for" because it overlooks the Spokane Valley.

The porch wraps around to the backyard which has beautifully landscaped 2/3 acres. Denny spent three weeks chopping and cutting his way through the overgrown yard, and is still at it.

My granddaughter told me that they get deer every day in the yard, eating mommy's flowers. I thought this might be a slight exaggeration until we went through the gate...low and behold was that darn flower eating deer!

The girls are making Denny and Opa lunch.

Ashley is showing Opa the "proper" way to eat an Oreo cookie.

Playing games after supper...of course Ashley beat Opa and Granny.

The next day we went fishing.

Daddy helps Ashley with the fishing. He (I mean Ashley:-)) caught 8 to Opa's one fish...something I am not proud of.

This little girl is not squeamish at all. Ashley first kisses the worm for luck, then kisses the fish before setting it free. Might have to keep a close eye on this one at age 16 or so.:-)

Next day we took a boat tour around Coeur D' Alene. Here Granny soaks up some warm sun on the top deck.

 Ashley and Opa look out over the lake. If the tour employees had at least one ounce of personality or a better narration, the boat ride would of been more enjoyable.

Around the beach were metal statues of different animals.

Denny and Laura took us to a "Pig in the park" festival in Spokane. We had not known that there were these beautiful falls right in downtown Spokane.

Have to add this one because she is such a beauty! (and smart as a whip too, whatever that means)

Time to say goodbye for now, our visit was much too short. Next year we plan on a month up here. This will give granny and I plenty of time to find more tie-dye...ha ha

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Tom and Donna in Glacier

                         Here are some of our photos.

Donna and I took a boat ride on Lake McDonald with some good narrative                                                             by Sally, the seasonal ranger.           

We are very "full" of ourselves for making the hike to Hidden Lake.

We did finds a nice snow fields...which the park service might call a "glacier".

A well placed rock for a tired hiker.

Donna is trying to hitch a ride up the hill.

Can you think of a more beautiful spot for a coffee and newspaper?
Many Glacier Hotel.

The Great Northern was a major builder of this part of the west.

If you drive 26 mile on a dirt road near the west side of Glacier to Polebridge, you'll get a nice cold beer.

You might also see the northern lights up this far.

Now drive another 24 miles on the same dirt road you find yourself at a now closed border crossing to Canada.

Donna, being a rule breaker, insisted we stick our toes into Canada without the benefit of a passport.

Animals of Glacier Park.

                               Some of the mammals we found.

                             A nice two or three year old buck.

A Hoary Marmot sleeping in the sun.

I believe this is a columbian ground squirrel.

A pair of young mountain goats

Mom or dad keeping a eye on the youngsters.

Blondie (my wife's name for the bear) is an pre-adult female grizzly.

Found out from a naturalist that Blondie was kicked out of the den after only one year and not expected to survive last winter...she did.

Not exactly a Glacier mammal but Beni insisted on always leading the he was renamed "Bear-bait"!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Glacier Scenery

      After a few days of not blogging I need to catch up. Here are some scenery photos of glacier Park.

I wondered when the large block had fallen half way down the waterfall?

The last vestiges of winter (and glaciers) melting down the mountain.

Near Hidden Lake.

Hidden Lake, my younger sister shamed me into a tough hike to see it.

Typical Glacier.

The side of Glacier not all see, Polebridge Montana.

River from Swiftcurrent Lake in the Many Glacier area.

Looking towards Canada on the west side of Glacier Park.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Moving to West Glacier

As we leave North Fork, Idaho they finally got some much needed rain...which also caused some morning fog.

Our first stop was near Flathead Lake in Montana. Donna wanted some 
cherries so we stopped at the Bowman Orchards.

Here the workers are separating the cherries and packaging the results.

We were given a rare look at cherry wine in the making, by the owner. What you can not see in the photo is the bubbling as it ferments. 

Jerry Bowman, who owns the farm explains to Donna how the cherries ferment for about three days before they are bottled into a wine. The skin is then used to make wine cherry jam or jellies. Jerry also told stories of bears (more than one) raiding his cherry orchard as recently as yesterday.

This is some of Jerry's product that Donna is stealing. :-)

Our arrival at Sundance RV in Coram near Glacier was event free. Very woodsy and not what you'd call a resort, more like camping...but nice.

This is the first fire we have had since last December at Moabi Regional Park. Our Canadians neighbors came over to visit our fire and we learned quite a lot about farming from Paul and his son Braden.

We stopped in Essex, Montana, where the Izaak Walton Inn resides, a hotel I tried booking a few years ago but snow had squashed the trip.

Izaak Walton Inn was built in the 30's as a railroad hotel so if the sound of train horns or track bother you than my question would be...why would you book a "railroad" hotel?

As always, it seems with hotels built from 80 to over 100 years ago, the craftsmanship and wood work is phenomenal.

The Great Northern Railway started as the Minneapolis and St Cloud Railway in 1878 and changed to the Great Northern Railway in 1889 as the only privately funded railway that did not use federal funds or grants.

We saw this bar and grill in Whitefish and had to wonder how Great Northern Railway has not sued the pants off the bar for copyright infringement?

This is a "Bruck". A cross between a bus and truck. These vehicles were used between Whitefish, Kelispell and other outlining towns.  A total of 12 were built for the Great Northern Railway to ferry passengers and freight to a nearby rail town. The floor of the bruck was the same height as the rail car to make loading easier. 

This is the symbol of the Great Northern Railway.

Whitefish, Montana is an "artsy fartsy" town. Very nice shopping and good food but deep pockets are a necessity.

Big Mountain in Whitefish is a ski resort in the winter but in the summer it is a bike, scenic chairlift,  zip-line and alpine slide paradise.

Flathead County Courthouse building was awesome. Built in 1902 and renovated recently at a cost of 2.3 million.

The inside of the county building was all wood, glass and "plat" books. (plat books are books that map and show division of land) There were hundreds of these beautifully bound plat books in glass shelves.