The winds didn’t howl without ceasing, and the snow didn’t fall at anywhere near the rate of winter 2011.  The satellite dish stayed affixed to the roof, as did the stovepipe.  I didn’t have to dig myself out of a ditch once.

But still, winter in Montana is Winter.  And I’m glad to see it go.

Yesterday, Pseudo Sista, Maggie Rose, and I bid winter a fond farewell by walking up the Going-t0-the-Sun Road from Avalanche a few miles.  It was cool in the mountains, and especially in the shade, but we felt downright celebratory as we examined the buds on the trees, the liquid cerulean of thawed McDonald Creek, and the other assorted minutiae of spring.

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Arriving at a bend in the road that afforded us a staggering view of the Garden Wall, we observed the massive amounts of snow and ice and sent our warmest thoughts to the road crew faithfully digging out the upper reaches of the Sun Road.

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Maggie rode in her stroller at times, pushed it at others, and at one point put her full heart into running pell mell down the center of the Sun Road with her Nat Nat/Pseudo Sista.

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Her unbridled energy and enthusiasm cemented spring’s arrival for me – it’s not just about the big melt and warm sun on aging bones and chilled plants.  Spring is about young things.  And as the sun and the road crew chip away at winter’s fingernails, dug so deeply into the high country, I will revel in showing my oldest all the delights of the tiny border between spring and summer in Glacier National Park.

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