We spent the entire night at the fire just hanging out and laughing together. I felt it brought us closer together after some of the stressful days we had behind us. We frequently would go through cycles of distance and bonding. It’s impossible to maintain only one level of closeness for that period of time, so we began to just make space for it.
Grasslands is so beautiful and so different than anything else we’d seen (which of course is a recurring theme; each province is so unique and glorious). I thought it would be hot like a dessert because it was so sunny with no trees for shade, but it was cool due to the wind, which was so strong! We had to put more clothes on to deal with it, and even lighting our stove for breakfast wouldn’t happen; we ate dry cereal for breakfast instead.
I knew this was a moment I would carry forever. Sometimes I just have that feeling – when I work so hard for something and finally accomplish it – when something so beautiful reaches into my heart and writes its language there. I was so grateful to be there. I also got to see lenticular clouds, something you only see around mountains!
I need time in nature, I need to see and experience beautiful things. I need to be challenged and I need to be alone. And I need to feel like I’m making the world a better place in my own way, and my way has always been so focused on women. I didn’t come up with any answers that night, not exactly. But I’ve been working more toward what I want and away from what I don’t want. I’m confident that even if I don’t know where I’m going, I’m moving wholeheartedly toward something good.
Going back down was a lot easier – we moved along at a hop! We saw a marmot (I think that’s what it was?) and we followed it for ages – it seemed very photogenic. We also saw pekas, and tonnes of birds. No bears, thankfully. Moving from the treeless mountain cirque back into the woods was something of a sad moment for me. I so loved the different experience and wish I had the opportunity to be out there more.
I really love doing small, rewarding hikes. When Christine and I planned this trip, we weren’t sure how to manage my desire for long, remote solo hikes and her fondness for more leisurely activities like being by the beach. The short hikes really fed us both because I got to see lots of really interesting and unique sights, but it didn’t take too much out of her. It was a great mix that worked well for us both – and we both also got our solo and beach time, respectively.
On our way into Glacier, we pulled into what seemed like the entrance to a trail, just to see if it was one we might want to do. We saw a woman outside of her car with a camera, and when we saw what it was aimed at, we both gasped. Not far from the woman, only about 10 metres, there was a mama grizzly and her cubs. We took a photo (from INSIDE the car!) and drove away quickly.
The day started overcast when we got on our first trail – the Rainforest Trail. There are two parts to this trail (1 & 2) totalling about 2.2k. The trails were gorgeous and wholly unlike anything we’d seen so far. It was a true rainforest. So damp and dense with all kinds of creatures. We saw countless slugs and even stopped to get a photoshoot with one of them.
But we did sleep – until we woke up first thing in the morning wondering why our breath felt so strained. Oops, we accidentally suffocated ourselves! And that, my friends, was the last time we slept with all the windows done up. Who know a Honda Fit would be fucking airtight?