Stop Two: Glacier National Park

After we left Canada, we headed south for Glacier.  I couldn't wait to see the colorful rocks in the crystal clear lakes, the mountains & the glaciers.

But something else completely blew me away and changed my life forever.  

Before we got to Montana, I had never had anything huckleberry flavored.  In fact, I didn't know huckleberry's were a thing.  I knew Audrey Hepburn sang about a huckleberry friend and I knew Huckleberry Finn went on adventures.  But I didn't know about the wonderful world of huckleberry flavored soda, pie, taffy, suckers, coffee, hot chocolate, or wine.  I just had no idea.

You know when you're in the middle of a moment that you just know will be burned in your brain forever?  After our first day exploring Glacier, we went into town for dinner.  It was a little later in the evening and we were struggling to find a place that was a) still serving dinner and 2) not a two hour wait.

We settled on this little mom & pop deli.  They were almost out of everything.  And just about to close.  But we got in. And, most importantly, we got food.

We ordered and then sat on the front porch, huckleberry sodas in hand.  Huckleberry pie in front of us.  And huckleberry taffy on deck.  

We ate our dessert before dinner; faces still hot from our day in the sun.  And the breeze still warm as the sun sank below the horizon.

I don't remember what we talked about.  I don't remember much.  But I do remember how I felt in that moment.

So content.  So alive.  And so happy to know that huckleberry's exist in the world.

Side note: later that night, someone realized they left their backpack at the lake.  At the first stop we made that day, almost 12 hours prior.  So three of us went back into the pitch black park at 11:30 PM to look for it.  We stopped at every pull off and stepped out of the car, bear spray in hand, singing everything from John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt to Adele's "Hello" as loud as we could to ward off any vicious predators.  

We searched and searched.  And almost gave up.  But at the last stop, which we quickly realized was where we had been and where the backpack would be, we started heading back to the car.  Defeated.  But someone said, "Wait - what's this??" And pulled out a note from under a rock that said,

"We found your backpack.  It's at the Lake MacDonald ranger station."

So basically, Glacier introduced me to huckleberry's AND restored my faith in humanity.  All in the first 12 hours.

Photo by Haley George

Huckleberry friends

Photo by Haley George

The day we did this hike would have been my grandma's 87th birthday.  She passed away Thanksgiving of last year. She was my absolute favorite human so this day was extremely hard.  Along the hike, there were yellow wildflowers everywhere.  Yellow flowers were her favorite.  So, I picked 87 of them and left them at the top for her.