Friday, August 5, 2011

Days 40-43: Kalispell and Libby MT, Some Big Trees, and a Dash of Idaho

So, we left Glacier NP and headed west without much of a plan (typical).  We'd heard about some giant cedar trees in western Montana from Wayne and Megan (see Bozeman entry) .  We love big trees and we had the time so of course we headed that way!  Spent a nice, uneventful night in Kalispell, MT.  No photos to document it which typically means we were dog tired and didn't motivate to take any.

We got a pretty late start leaving Kalispell...more evidence we were tired, but also the little park we stayed in was pretty nice and we just didn't feel any hurry to rush off. Needless to say, we didn't get too far before it was time to find a place for the night. We stopped at the visitor's center (which was closed) in Libby to find out about local campsites and discovered that there was a little campground run by the local volunteer fire department right next door.

Looks pretty much like any other campground doesn't it?

'Cept this one's in the middle of town with a casino/liquor store for a neighbor, to one side...

...and a, yep no kidding, cemetery on the other!
It was cheap and we didn't want to drive anymore so that was that, we spent the night.
Trains, Harleys, midnight revelers...we might as well have slept in the middle of the road!
Lesson learned.

Onto the big trees!  Visited Ross Creek Giant Cedars the following morning.  This is a grove of old growth trees and they are huge!  Some are 500+ years old.  Kind of like Muir Woods but these are cedars and douglas firs.

Except for the path, the forest is completely untouched.  They cut any trees that are in the path or in danger of falling on someone but otherwise leave it alone.  Pretty cool.

Glad I wasn't there when this thing fell!

Later that day we stopped in Bonner's Ferry, Idaho at the visitor's center to get some info for Canada, use their wifi to look up cabin rentals in Banff (we have a visitor coming to meet us!), and make some phone calls.  We also got an oil change and went to the bank to get some Canadian moolah.

We thought we'd get into Canada but ran out of day so we camped at Copper Creek up the road, about a mile from the Canadian border.

This sweet rig belongs to Brad and Janice, a couple we met at Copper Creek.  The motorcycle mounts on the back, nice.  Brad and Janice take their camping pretty seriously, they even brought a chainsaw, handy.  And makings for a "Cesar,"  a drink like a bloody mary but with Clamato instead of tomato juice.  Yum.

Newlyweds and die-hard dog lovers, Brad and Janice were great to hang out with.  Janice is holding their dachsund, Buck, who had just been through major surgery after being attacked by a chow.  Terrible story but Buck the miracle dog is doing great!

We almost didn't go to Idaho.  Glad we did!

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