Tuesday, April 8, 2014

G is for. . .


Grand Canyon, Grand Teton, Glacier, and what a grand idea the parks are, anyway!  I had some trouble deciding about this one.  In the last couple of years we've visited the Grand Canyon:
North Kaibab Trail

Likewise Grand Teton NP:
The most photographed barn in the world?

But I decided to write about our visit in 2010 to Glacier National Park, because it has a story.
Two Medicine Lake
It's a story of the rest of the family running about seeing amazing scenery and wildlife (grizzlies!  with cubs!) while I sat around camp.  It was a bit of G for grousing, but mostly it was P for pneumonia.  That's right--I'm the only person I know who toured Glacier National Park while coughing her lungs up with a rampaging case of pneumonia.

We'd planned for weeks.  Coordinated with other family members.  And headed out from California full of excitement.  By late afternoon the first day, I knew I was sick.  Should we turn around?  No, no, I'd get over it and be fine in a day or so.  So I sat and burned with fever all across northeastern CA, eastern Oregon, and into Idaho.  I stayed in camp at the Sawtooth Mountains and napped while the guys went for a hike.

Two days later:
Trying to enjoy Bowman Lake, only I can't really stand up
 That night I sat up in the car most of the night, on account of not being able to breathe lying down.  Next day we drove 40 miles of gravel roads to West Glacier, found the tiny medical clinic, and were told (to no one's surprise) that I had pneumonia.  Armed with antibiotics, I expected to be all better and full of pep in two days.  WRONG!  The fever went away, and I was able to breathe again, but holy cow, I felt awful for weeks!  My 81-year-old Mother-in-Law could hike me into the ground the first few days.

But I'm a stubborn cuss.  At the very end, I declared myself well enough to hike for real, and we were able to get a back-country permit.  Got to spend one night away from the campfires (it was worth hiking 6 miles each way for that alone, actually; the smoke was very hard to cope with), in a room with a view:

Interesting neighbors, too:

Of course, Mr. Goat there had a strong taste for salt, and he knew where it came from.  It is very hard to do your business when a goat is standing 6 feet off, urging you to hurry up so he can enjoy the salt lick!   

So there you have it: G for Grands, Glacier, and goats.


Housekeeping: The winners of the Death By Ice Cream giveaway have been notified!  There are actually six winners, as one had bought the book and generously gave her chance back.  Thanks, Maria!  And thanks to everyone who entered!


  1. Gorgeous photos! And good for you for hanging in there that whole trip. I would've begged to go home.

    And I learned more about goats than I think I needed to…. :)

    Madeline @ The Shellshank Redemption
    Minion, Capt. Alex's Ninja Minion Army
    The 2014 Blogging from A-Z Challenge

    1. I thought about it, but home was so far away! I didn't have the energy to go home. I thought about having them put me on a train for my Mom's house, too, but that would have been a very long day, too.

      And I learned more about goats than I wanted, too :D

  2. Great places to visit. Beautiful pictures!

    1. Thanks, Teresa! They are all well worth the visit. And the Grand Canyon is one that does amply reward even the person who can only stand at the roadside overlooks and gape.

    2. Meant to add that I still hope to backpack into the Canyon someday :)

  3. Pneumonia while camping?! What a trooper!!

    1. The only really bad part was people's awful campfires, making for worse air pollution than LA sometimes! The good part was that no one allowed me to do any of the cooking or dishwashing :D

  4. Breathtaking pictures, particularly the first one and of the glacier. Glaciation fascinates me!
    #AtoZChallenge http://virtuallyallsorts.wordpress.com

  5. Oh my, I am sorry that you were so sick on this adventure. I can't believe that you kept on going when you were so ill. Thanks for the beautiful pictures you've shared with us. What a trip!
    thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm always glad to meet new A to Z friends. I hope you will stop by again. I'm looking forward to seeing your next post.

  6. Amazing the stories we get while travelling. Glad you had some good bits to go with the bad. That goat is cute :)

    1. That goat was a lot less cute from 6 feet away when I was rather exposed!


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