Glacier National Park escape

Hidden lake Glacier national park
Glacier national park
Glacier Going to the Sun Road

I’m back from Montana! And I’m proudly unwrapping my new blog today – meet chestnutmocha.com! Ben and I decided to move to our own domain running on WordPress(.org), but I’ll make a separate post about it with the reasons, tips, problems and solutions from my own experience. We’re also working on some exciting bonuses to celebrate the new online “home”.

But today I want to share my love for Montana and Glacier National Park in particular. Since I visited the park 4 years ago for the first time, it stole my heart and soul, and everything in between (no worries, bears are not involved!). When we moved to Idaho from Russia last year, I knew I had to go visit Glacier again. And the fact that Ben has never been there just added a big bonus to my excitement. When we got an email from our friend from NYC that she’ll be in Montana near Glacier shooting a wedding, we immediately made a plan to meet there and explore the park together. I couldn’t have been happier: my favorite place on the planet plus my favorite people – all together on vacation! We arrived to Bigfork, MT on Friday night, had a fun evening with the wedding crowd in one of the town’s bars, then 5 of us camped in a field.

Montana night sky photography

Late at night, around 1-2 a.m. we decided to take some night sky photos, we even brought a tripod with us for this reason! While we were shooting the stars in the middle of the field, we suddenly noticed something dark, kind of big, slowly moving towards us in the field. Ben and I quickly decided that it was a bear (because we wisely read lots of bear attack stories before the trip.) We all gazed at the figure approaching for a few more seconds, then one of our friends jumped in his car, turned the lights on and pointed it into the field. By that time the bear (if it was a bear) wasn’t there anymore, and we didn’t know which way it went. “What if the bear circles us, slowly moving in closer and closer until it decides to attack our tents?” – that question kept Ben and I awake for a long time, with pepper spray and flashlight in our hands we guarded the tents, while everyone else dreamed away peacefully.

Glacier national park
Hidden lake trail Logan Pass
lake McDonald sunset
Mountain goats Montana
Logan Pass
sunset Avalanche campground

The next morning we got up short on sleep, everyone went to the wedding, Ben and I headed to Glacier. We were very worried that we would’t find a camping site in the park since it’s high tourist season, and the campgrounds fill up at first-come-first-served basis. We got extremely lucky, when after passing by many campgrounds with a sing “Full” at the entrance, Ben found the last vacant spot in one of them! It had an orange envelope on it, instead of the payment slip, which apparently confused many other people who drove by before us. Yay! Camping in the forest with many other campers around us sounded way safer that on our own in the field. Ben set up our tent, and we went on exploring Glacier.

We drove along the Going to the Sun Road, hiked at the Logan pass to the Hidden lake, saw a grizzly bear fishing from very far away, fell in snow, met the snow goats, a marmot, lots of ground squirrels, mountain sheep, got sunburnt, had dinner and watched the sunset at lake McDonald, finally spent a nicer and quieter night at the campground. That’s all for the first day, but you guessed right if you assumed I have many-many more photos from the second day at Glacier, and I’ll post them later! Have you been to Glacier or Montana? I can’t recommend it enough!

In TRAVEL

17 responses to “Glacier National Park escape”

  1. lisa says:

    This place is GORGEOUS!! I really want to visit now! I can’t believe you came so close to a bear run in, so scary. I didn’t realize you were from Russia- what a big move!

    • Katie says:

      Thanks, Lisa! You should definitely visit at some point, Glacier is so worth it, I just can’t recommend it enough. I’d just say, we’re going back again soon – that’s for sure!

  2. Martha says:

    What beautiful photos!! I want to go back there so badly–though the bears are scary, I’ll admit!!

    • Katie says:

      Thanks, Martha! Yeah, the bears are kind of scary. But for some reason I’m more afraid of them during the day while hiking, but not as much in a campground as much. For Ben it’s the opposite, he can’t close his eyes at night if we’re not in a house. What about you?

  3. Guys, congrats on switching to .com! I did a while ago but I do wish I did it on WordPress now, big regret.

    Ok so camping stories, stunning images, bear talk and there’s more to come? I think this has been one of my fav posts ever on your site and technically it’s the first on the new site. Looking forward to p2.

    I’ve not heard of this place but it’s seriously beautiful, there really does seem like so much exploring to be done in American. Close shave with the “bear”, it certainly sounds like one, not bigfoot then?

    Just wanted to say thank you for your continued reading of my blog guys.

    • Katie says:

      Thanks, Mat!! Why can’t you switch to WP now?
      I’m glad you liked our camping post, because yes, I have a lot more to share! I usually need a vacation after a vacation just to sort out my photos, videos, scan polaroids and such. Hopefully, I’ll do it soon :-)

  4. Emily says:

    these photos are absolutely phenomenal! you have got me craving the northwest even more now! i must go ASAP.
    p.s. im loving the new domain!

  5. Anna R. says:

    Katie, these pictures are incredible! and that bear story kind of freaks me out a little! I’d be the unprepared hiker without pepper spray, trying to defend myself with a stick… I’m glad you had such a good trip!

    • Katie says:

      Anna, thanks! And I can’t wait to see you soon! I think we should try to meet, maybe on one of the evenings? I’ll email you!

  6. Wow that looks amazing! The photos are stunning! I have just discovered your blog and I will be following you! :)

  7. Kelly says:

    This looks and sounds amazing!

    xx
    Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

    • Katie says:

      Thank you, Kelly! We really love it up there, and with the annual pass I hope to make a few more trips there!

  8. Jess says:

    I am so jealous of this adventure! It looks amazing. I have never been to Montana, but I have been wanting to! Now I know exactly where I need to go!

    Love these photos and I can’t wait to see more!

    xoxo Jess
    Foreign Room

  9. Lanette says:

    This post just made me want to pack up go there immediately! I love Glacier Park too. We only spent a day there last year and we’ve both decided that we’ll be back for longer soon. I’m really hoping it will work out this summer still. Your photos are just breathtaking as always 😉
    Have you been to the Northern Cascades National Park? I know you’ll like it.

    • Katie says:

      No, I haven’t! I saw your recent post about it and I already told Ben that we have to go check it out! It’s a bit further from us than Glacier but I’m sure it’s worth it!

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