Week of August 03, 2003
We were not sure if we could get into or through Glacier National Park because of three very large fires that had closed the entire park just the week before. Fortunately, the firefighters remarkably turned the fire back and most of the park was reopened.
The fire had claimed quite a bit around the accessible areas so we decided to drive through the park rather than camp and hike. The views were spectacular, even though some were obscured by smoke.
Along our scenic drive, we happened upon wildlife unique to the area. We did see a young Black Bear run across the road about 50' in front of us but alas, slamming on the brakes and jumping out to take a picture was not the best idea on the road at the time. We did manage, however, to get other animals to agree to pose for our pictures.
It would have been nice to have spent more time in Glacier National Park but we were happy to be out of the smoke haze and out on the clear prairie of Montana. Montana is known as the "Big Sky" state and we totally agree. Driving along the prairies, you really feel as though there is more sky around you. Maybe an illusion, perhaps not. But one thing is for certain, it was beautiful.
We decided to be cheap and stayed the night at a rest stop in Choteau, Montana. This town is steeped in history for the area and if you enjoy looking an turn-of-the-20century houses, this town boasts close to 20 homes built in the 19th Century.