It seemed like a good plan, too, since I’ve not been to Going to the Sun and Glacier National Park in over a decade. It used to be a quaint little ride through the middle of Nowhere, Montana, across Logan Pass and back down the other side. The road was a slow ride populated by queasy car drivers fearful of falling off of the edge of the earth. Some even kept two tires across the yellow line, obviously unaware of their own lack of driving skills.
It was mostly a good show to watch all of the city slickers stop in the middle of the road, heedless of traffic behind them, to take pictures through their vehicle windows. When they got back home I’m certain they proudly displayed each photograph and exclaimed how they braved the experience.
So, off I went, in search of adventure one more time. Instead, I found construction. Ten years worth of construction. And 2008 is only year two, according to a flagman on a segment of single-lane-only narrow park road. I figure that – and the price of gas – will doom this place to a long and lingering death.
But that’s all right, because it will keep traffic down, and afford those who can the opportunity to tour this magnificent piece of real estate in relative isolation. For now, the turnouts and pullouts are packed with cars, tour buses and people, all trying to take pictures of the same thing.
Should you enter this place from the east, you can get as far as the Weeping Wall with relative ease (in 2008) and then turn around there if you want to miss the construction delays, which can amount to three or four hours. You might have to wrestle for a spot in the parking area to turn around. The crowds seem to be drawn to this thing like a fly over a cesspool.
On the other hand, if you’re in a hurry to get through this thing, feel free to tailgate, or to pass everything in sight on blind corners. I experienced a lot of that. Mostly, it made me laugh. I had both sides of my lane to maneuver in, while cars have only a few feet to juggle. It particularly amuses me in situations like that, as cars pass in a hurry, only to be held up by the next 20 cars ahead. So funny. I find it my prerogative to ride behind the hurry-upper and let him see my shit-eating grin as he fumes away behind the next vehicle in a long line.
My question: If you’re here to see it, why would you be in such a hurry to get through it? Are you late for a court date on the other side?
My crowning achievement in four hours of constant amusement was watching drivers who poked cameras out of the sunroof and snapped away while either stopped in the middle of the road, or never stopped at all. Their heads were invisible as a detached arm with a camera attached poked its way up and forward, appearing much like one of the automatons in the original War of the Worlds.
Now that’s adventure.