It is again time to pay homage our backyard: Many Glacier.

Mt. Gould is all dressed up for fall.

As are Grinnell Point (left), Swiftcurrent Peak, Mt. Wilbur and Bullhead Point.

As one of my favorite locals, Stormy, promised me, Indian Summer is here.  It’s breezy, but it’s so worth it – the sky is azure, the trees look like they are literally gold leafed, the air is bathtub-temperature.  So, even though we should have been extracting honey, Brother Dear, Hank, and I all journeyed to Many Glacier yesterday, to pay our respects.  Well, Hank is probably off the hook from extracting honey, but as for the rest of us … we’re just under Glacier’s spell, I suppose.

At any rate: our initial plans were to climb Mt. Grinnell, but with 50 MPH gusts predicted, we decided that climbing was a poor choice but hiking to Grinnell Glacier was probably a good one.   And it turned out to be fantastic!  We especially loved the lack of people on the trail – generally, in the summertime, Grinnell Glacier is thronged with people, and it can be hard to hear the wisdom of the mountains above so much chatter.  That was not a problem yesterday, although the folks we did see raised our eyebrows: a cheery Japanese man in his dress shoes, carrying his lunch in an-about-to-break-grocery-bag over his arm, and a quiet European girl, dark hair cropped against her skull, nearly ten miles in to the hike, sporting knee high lace up leather boots with 2 1/2 inch wedge heels.  We marveled.

Of course, they were probably marveling at our trio, too.  We had earlier decided that bear spray was probably worthless in such windy conditions, so Brother Dear was carrying my .357 Sig Sauer and rocking his new Washington Redskins jersey.  No stated reason for that particular choice, but certainly a combination that caught many eyes on the trail!  And yes, it is legal to carry a weapon in Glacier National Park these days.  Congress tacked that law onto some part of last year’s amendments to the new credit card legislation, as I recall.

As always, we saw many things of great beauty and wonder on our hike.

The waterfalls were still running.

The Bighorn Sheep were still posing.  They’re starting to do their fall head-butting thing, too, though we didn’t capture that with the camera.

The mountain goats were out and about, too – don’t they look better when they have their coats on, as opposed to the mangy critters you see in July and August?

Indian paintbrush, still in bloom – wow.

Grinnell Glacier, our destination, was lovely, too:

We had lunch up there – Hank always brings the best snacks, even if he did forget his ubiquitous gummy bears this time.

And after a while, we went home, via Lake Josephine.

And we deemed it a very good day.

Now, time to get this honey extracted!

2010.  Glacier County Honey Co. Photo credits to Brother Dear and Hank, too.  All Rights Reserved.