Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Glacier National Park

I was looking for a place to grab lunch before I headed to the park. It wasn't far away from where I was staying. It was an easy day trip to the park and back. Especially when taking the whole state of Montana into consideration, I was hardly covering any ground at all.

The town I was in, Kalispell didn't offer many sophisticated dining choices, so I expanded my search to neighboring towns.

I found a place that looked decent and had good reviews. It was called the Pocketstone Cafe. I almost decided against it immediately upon visiting their website and seeing a picture of the front of their menu.

But I gave them the benefit of the doubt and took it as a whimsical picture. I wanted to look past it because of the good reviews, so I started to look through the menu items and I came to the burger section.

The menu is written in a casual style that I think is inappropriate. When I'm hungry and looking for food, I don't want to be amused by your clever writing, I want a no-nonsense description of the food. The colloquial tone makes me suspect that these restauranteurs are amateurs.

But the final straw came when I got to this:

Hey, I often like having an egg on my burger. Suddenly I'm interested only in those places across the street. As if that weren't enough, the attitude continues on the next item on the menu.


Eating contests and giving awards for being gluttonous disgust me.  I'm not impressed by places that claim to offer meals that it is a freakish feat to finish. The image of the staff forcing a patron to finish a second burger (half pound patties, btw) made me nauseated enough to close the website and search for another place. Besides, I was afraid the hostess might shoot me if she didn't approve of my order.

I continued my search and landed on a fun-looking place called Burgertown Dairy Freeze. TripAdvisor featured reviews touting The Viking Burger as worth driving 45 minutes out of your way for. So I was intrigued, but then disappointed by the listing of the hours. It said it would be open on Thursday, and seems to close on Monday at 3pm and take Tuesdays and Wednesdays off. OK, fine, but then it says on Google that it's currently open. So I tried calling to be sure and my call was dropped before going through. I'm not in AT&T country, it seems. I only had one bar.

Suddenly another bar popped up, so I tried the call again. This time I got a recording verifying that they're closed Monday nights and Tuesday and Wednesday all day.

Strike two.

Finally, I struck gold. I did a search in Kalispell and found Frugals.  It looked like a good choice. It had several Washington State locations and this one in Kalispell, MT. The menu bragged about several Best Of awards they'd won in both Washington and Montana. They describe themselves as The Best Food (a little) Money can Buy.

They had a monthly special burger, too, which looked good to me, so I was sold and headed for Frugals for a Red Pepper Bacon Chipotle burger. It wasnt' until after I'd made my decision that I was delighted to discover that Frugals was literally one block from the Motel 6!

I stopped and ate my burger in the parking lot. Then hit the road for Glacier National Park. It was only about 45 minutes before I was in the park.

It was an incredible drive. I entered at the west entrance and drove all the way to St. Mary Lake on the east side, and then I turned around and drove back.  There were so many places to pull over and check out the view. Even though there was a lot of traffic, there were enough places to stop and all of the stops offered magnificent views.

The land in this park is steep! So low on the left side of the highway and so high on the right side. The architecture required just to build the road is impressive enough, but the geography is stunning. It's a waterfall lovers haven. And the glaciers are impressive.

Most of the them are zebra striped, as in partially melted. But a couple of them were still totally white.

Some of the things I couldn't photograph:

The clarity of the water.

A waterfall that spills down onto the road (roll up your windows!)

The crystal clear reflection of the sky
in the lake alongside the road
made it seem like I was looking down on the clouds
as I drove by.

The sheer enormity of the walls of rock.

The depth of the canyon and the steepness of the mountains.

























No comments: