Day 66 – Kayaking in Sylvan Lake at Custer State Park & Devils Tower

Ever since I set foot in Custer State Park I knew I wanted to kayak on Sylvan Lake. The lake is beautiful and the granite spires viewable from around the lake are really impressive. So before driving off toward my aunt, I went back to Sylvan lake with that goal in mind. The lake was smaller than what it appeared and I only needed 30 minutes or so to circle the lake twice. Regardless I was happy I got to do it before leaving the area. On my drive to the lake I ran into another magnificent bison herd. I initially focused on the pair below because the male kept on grunting and sticking out it’s tongue. Another section of the herd that caught my eye was a mother and her calve seen here walking toward me. Finally, these two made me laugh as the scratched themselves against the hill.…

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Day 67 – 68 – Driving to Moscow Idaho & Hiking Moscow Mountain

Friday I essentially spent the whole day driving towards my aunt’s house. I got there at around 5 since I had gained an hour from the time zone change. My aunt had cooked food for me which was a really nice treat. We spoke a little and discussed the possibilities for our hikes the next couple of days. The following morning we decided to go to hike Moscow mountain. It was nice but it was unseasonably hot and some of the trail was very exposed (I think it hit 98 that day). That led to me to overheat; a common theme with me. 🙁 Funny enough my 57 year old aunt seemed just fine. That day we hiked 14 miles and enjoyed some good views and wildlife together.      

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Day 69 – Hiking Elk Creek Falls & The Cedar Grove

On the next day’s hike my aunt and I went to Elk Creek Falls. There were 3 different falls on a relatively straight forward short hike (3.5 miles or so). The largest waterfall being a 90 foot drop. The scenery surpassed the prior days by a long shot. Aside from the waterfalls, there was lots of beautiful old trees and varied vegetation. Fortunately for me and my overheating ways it was also a lot cooler with plenty of canopy to keep us shaded. After the falls we went to a cedar grove nearby. This to me was the most impressive aspect of the day. The oldest tree is thought to be about 3000 years old and its trunk is 18 feet wide. Aside from this iconic tree there were plenty of other beautiful gigantic cedars that were extremely old in the surrounding area. I felt a peaceful tranquility walking around…

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Day 70 – 75 University of Idaho & my changing itinerary

Today my aunt and I decided to take it easy. My aunt showed me around the University of Idaho and took me on a walk through it’s Arboretum. It has a pretty large variety of trees and plants. The last couple of days I’ve spent reading, sleeping in, running, doing research, writing, cooking, and reorganizing myself. Since I skipped Yellowstone my itinerary going forward is going to be less than efficient but here is what I have decided to do: Glacier National Park Yellowstone National Park Grand Teton National Park Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve Sawtooth National Forest (optional) Wallowa-Whitman National Forest – Seven Devils Moscow, ID Mt Rainier National Park Seattle, WA (or Olympic National Park) Olympic National Park (Or Seattle) Vancouver, Canada Regional Canadian parks followed by… Canadian Glacier (optional) Yoho National Park Banff National Park Jasper National Park Dinosaur Provincial Park I know some…

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Day 76 & 77 – Glacier National Park in Montana

After leaving my aunt’s house I drove 6 or so hours to Glacier National Park and slept in the Apgar visitor center parking lot. The idea was to be at the door first thing in the morning since backcountry camping permits are scarce in the summer. Unfortunately the office was not where I had slept. It was in Apgar village not Apgar visitor center. By the time I got there a slew of people had already obtained permits so I was out of luck for that night. However, I booked a 5 day 4 night outing starting out on Tuesday. I asked the ranger for a recommendation on a day hike he recommended that I hike Siyeh Pass trail. I decided to do that and drive along the Going-To-The-Sun road. The views on the road are spectacular but it is very congested and on many pull offs you won’t find…

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