National Parks National Friends

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am I the queen of waiting months to talk about summer adventures? yes, i am and i’m okay with being the queen of this because i really just want to be the queen of something.

this summer my wonderful friend miriam and i loaded up her car with our camping gear, all the food we managed to scrounge out of our pantries and we headed west. i think all my best adventures have been poorly prepared for and not to say we are poor planners but we are definitely poor planners. the first thing we forgot was water bottles so a good portion of our trip we drank water out of tin cups from the emergency jug we brought. good thing winging it brings me the absolute most joy because we were flying high on the wings of it.

we knew we wanted to see glacier national park and we knew we wanted to visit her brothers in idaho but basically everything else on this trip we decided to do in the moment. our first unplanned stop was the bad lands. its a national park thats incredible underrated and one of my moms favorites. i honestly was shocked how much i loved it. we only spent a day exploring it and i’ve been itching to go back ever since. such a strange/beautiful place i just had no idea about. thanks south dakota!

next we drove to devils tower. (spits on fingers.) it was incredibly hot and honestly all i did was stare at it and wonder how people climb it. and why they do because it was so freaking hot. very neat, very bizarre.

side note: if you ever have questions about keeping the cost of trips like this low, the answer is peanut butter and oatmeal.

the drive across montana was flat and boring but once we saw the mountains my chest was squeezey for hours. driving into the park my face was plastered to the window the whole time we were there. i have never seen anything that big. i’ve told everyone that glacier is not the first national park you should visit because it will ruin all of the other ones. it was beautiful and i feel silly trying to describe it past that. i loved everything about it, even the bears.

speaking of bears we had a nice little visit from a mama and cup exploring our camp early one morning and after flighting my way out of the cocoon of sleeping bag and hammock, i watched them mosey on through everyone’s tent sites on their way out. the other campers had no idea and that still makes me giggle.

we hiked and explored and climbed on rocks and spotted more bears and bighorn sheep. we talked about hikes we wanted to do when we come back listened to snippets of conversations on the trails and made a list of the crazy things we heard. some of my favorites we recorded were, “…when my parents were night skiing…” and, “I thought McDonalds was up this way a mile…” and “how did they know we owned a subaru?!” and finally, “Dad! Remember when i was dancing around and i fell right here!?”

other favorite moments from glacier involved miriam’s brothers left us a note in a shotgun shell buried under a tree welcoming us to the park, us accidentally hiking miles and miles further than we thought but ending up at a beautiful (and huge) glacier, having old men count the laps i made around the campground while i was on the phone with caleb. they yelled on the eleventh lap that he must be cute and i yelled that he was.

we then drove to elk river idaho where we met the biggest family, stayed in miriam’s grandfather’s hunting cabin and hung out with her brothers joseph and silas. we rode four wheelers through the mountains and up to an old fire tower and we carved our initials into a shed with so many initials on it i was sure it was about to poke through the wood. we picked up snakes, adventured through the woods to find little waterfalls and picked crazy amounts of raspberries out of a junk yard.

joseph took us fishing for trout in the most freezing creek i’ve ever been in in my life. it was hands down my favorite part of the while trip, catching fish and freezing as we tried to walk on tip toes when it got above the waist. everything was going great until my foot went straight through and old beaver dam and i face planted in the frigid water. i started laughing so hard j had to pull me out by my flailing elbow. (have a mentioned how graceful i am?) i still have a huge scare up my shin.

we decided to leave idaho a day early so we could drive down to see yellowstone and though we didn’t see that many animals, we did pass i bison on the street and that was just enough for me because he was perfect. yellowstone was beautiful and smelly and i ate so many granola bars on the way through i should have been sponsored.

the drive home we stopped many times for kombucha and slept in the car every night. this is where i get a little sappy and tell you that miriam is not only a good friend, but a wonderful road buddy. we laughed at the fact that we had never actually hung out one on one before this trip but we decided to spend two weeks together in a car. boy i am so thankful we did. mir is good at asking questions and helping you think through things but then giving you hours to think through it on your own. one of the best things about this trip for me was how much time i got to spend in silence talking to Jesus. don’t be fooled though because ya girl also has the best taste in music and we broke and the kendrick at times and car danced across kansas. i love her. she is so fascinating to me because we are nothing alike but i could (and have) sit with her all day and never get sick of her. so thanks for the adventure miriam. you are one of a kind and i do in fact love you.

Posted on November 15, 2018 .