During our 5-day family trip to Glacier National Park more than 10 years ago, I saw some great sunrises. Each morning, I quietly crept out of the cabin in which we were staying, wandered down to the edge of Lake McDonald, and enjoyed a Montana morning in all its glory while sitting on the shore. On the last morning of our stay, I think I was able to convince most everyone to get up and see the sunrise for themselves. That is how I got this shot of my sister staring off into the distance as the sun popped out from behind the mountains.
Trees Growing on a Tree
Nearly 10 years ago, while hiking through the woods of Glacier National Park and crossing Avalanche Creek on a bridge just below some spectacular cascades, a fallen tree just downstream of the bridge caught our attention. Amongst the lush greenery around the creek, it appeared that a few branches from the fallen tree had continued growing in such a way that they now looked like little trees growing on top of the fallen tree. I’m sure this isn’t all that uncommon, but it looked pretty neat how the branch trees decreased in size the further up they were on the fallen tree trunk.
Rippled Waters of Lake McDonald at Dawn
A Glacier National Park sunrise really is a majestic event to experience. I was able to catch a number of sunrises over a few days of staying in the village of Apgar, including this one on the last morning of our stay at the park. Although the lake surface was a bit rippled, unlike a couple of the previous mornings, the sunrise at the one end of the Big Sky in Montana was fantastic. This photo of the lake and distant mountains was captured moments before the sun made its appearance.
What a great way to start the day!
Emerald Green McDonald Creek
Glacier National Park is chock full of beauty…all you have to do is open your eyes to experience nature at its finest. In the photo above, the bluish-green water of McDonald Creek steals the spotlight as it churns through the rocks with a backdrop of conifers. The color of the water is due to accumulations of very fine clay-sized particles that are produced by glaciers upstream (also called glacial flour).
Spot the Mountain Goats
How many mountain goats can you see in this photo? If you said two…you’d be wrong (so I hope you said three). Mountain goats seem to be a pretty common sight in certain areas of Glacier National Park, including this stretch along Going-to-the-Sun Road near Logan Pass. They’ve been known to walk right up to cars and wander through the nearby parking lot, and I’m guessing they’ve distracted enough drivers to account for at least a few fender-benders. They’re pretty cute…so how can you not be distracted!
A Lineup of Glacier National Park Jammers
Painted a vibrant ‘Mountain Ash Berry Red’, these classic red buses are referred to as Jammers in Glacier National Park. They seat 17 passengers, have lots of windows and a roll-up canvas top, and offer visitors to the park a tour through the heart of the park on Going-to-the-Sun Road. We had an excellent ride when our group occupied an entire bus, and the driver, Mark (I believe that was his name), was a great guide. I took this photo mainly because it looked like a cool lineup of the buses, but also because the bus we were on, #112, was situated right in the first position.
Interestingly, when my parents visited the park again more than 5 years later, they happened to see our driver and he remembered them and our group! I guess we made a bit of an impression!
First Light on Lake McDonald
I’ve featured a number of Glacier National Park sunrise photos in the past…mainly because I took a bunch of photos over the course of a few days worth of sunrises. On this morning, I was out at the lakeside just as the sun made its appearance amongst the distant (but not too distant) peaks in the park. It was a super clear morning with a nice still lake surface, and it was pretty cool watching the beams of light shoot across the lake surface from the craggy mountains.