Friday, August 15, 2014
Squeezing In As Much as Possible
I tried the middle of the river under the bridge. Ran into a ranger painting over graffiti on the bridge. Seriously -- it is impressive how well the millions of visitors to the park in general treat the park so well, but there are still some real jerks out there.
One thing I had been curious about all week were these plastic barrels of water along Bear Lake Road with canvas hoses attached. They were labeled WATER - NOT POTABLE - NOT FOR DRINKING. I wondered what they were for. So I asked him.
He said that there had been a major renovation of Bear Lake road recently. They widened it, smoothed out some curves, and actually even re-routed a mile of it away from Glacier Creek. And the barrels were to water the new native vegetation they were trying to get started in areas disturbed by the project.
So we did.
There was a lot of heavy rain by the time we got up to the Bear Lake parking lot. Lots of people coming back from hikes. Lots of people still out there, apparently, too, if you were counting cars. Lots of very wet, probably cold people, as it was probably about 45 degrees up there.
We drove back down ... when we had come back down from the Mills Lake hike, Vicki had spotted a streak of white in the forest up toward Glacier Gorge as we were rounding one of the switchbacks going down and asked "what's that white thing?"
That white thing, it turns out, is Alberta Falls and then that other cascade a ways below it -- visible from the road. Never knew you could see it from Bear Lake road, but from one spot, you can. So this time, I looked for it, and we spotted it. We're all, like, experts, and stuff now. :-)
Since this was to be our last night (yes, I agreed to leave Saturday) -- and we hadn't had a fire all week, tonight was the night. The fire ring in 96 is close to the tent pad, but it's kind of far away from where we had to put the camper. If you're in a camper, the site is really "strung out". So it really wasn't that cozy a campsite for a camper, and not really conducive for the campfire mood. But we took the chairs out there and torched one up and sat around it with a few drinks and the guitar until about 11:00pm. The stars were out in full force in the clear night. The Milky Way blazed across the sky. We even saw a shooting star.