dawson-pitamakin take two

my first summer in MT i had the privilege of doing a beautiful 18.5 mile hike with work. the students did great and we all enjoyed the amazing views.

i also had the privilege of living with my good friend april for all of 2011. she visited me in MT my first summer here and we joked about how wonderful it would be if she moved here…then she did! we had a lot of fun exploring MT together and drinking coffee at all hours of the day. april is heading out east but i couldn’t let her leave the state without doing the most beautiful day hike i’ve done in MT, or anywhere for that matter: the dawson-pitamakin loop in glacier national park. it’s two mountain passes, ridge and valley hiking, multiple alpine lakes, wildflowers galore and in general spectacular views. to top it all off we came within just 15 yards of a black bear in the final mile of the hike! the bear stopped right on the trail, directly in front of us. we stared at her, she stared at us, she took a step toward us (she had a cub with her), we talked to her (aka: made noise and got the bear spray ready) and then she went on her way.

it was a wonderful weekend with family and friends. thanks for being you, g-funk! and thanks to nikki for documenting our wonderful day – great photography skills!

we filled our water from mountain streams and didn’t filter. a typical hiking no-no but when you live in MT and the water is coming from a glacier and/or straight from the mountain it’s “safe” to drink. i learned this from randy and this is my second summer doing it. so far so good! don’t worry, we filter water from lakes, etc.

the 5 of us that did the hike: randy, me, krista, april and nikki. this is at the top of dawson pass.

randy juggles on the ridge.

about 2 of the 18.5 miles were along this ridge with incredible views the whole way. it’s hard not to just gaze at the mountains but you have to watch your step because the trail doesn’t give you much extra space!

mr. and mrs. 🙂

me and april. we have known each other since our freshman year of college but we didn’t truly become friends until we lead wilderness trips together in 2008. two+ weeks canoeing in the boundary waters will make you either really enjoy someone’s company or want space. for us it was the first one 🙂

always good reason to be a little silly. and jumpy.

two mountain passes complete and now we’re headed down to yet another alpine lake

we took plenty of breaks to simply soak it all in. so beautiful.

we have an amazing Creator.