DAY 161 To the Finish….Canada

Sep 20th

Oh my god what a storm last night it started at  4pm I  took extra ibuprofen PM  to knock me out…I didnt want to see my tent destroyed…. I also switched off my alarm to save battery. The storm raged  for hours until I fell asleep.

Hello  Hello  are you  okay in there  came a voice.

It took me a while to register  what was happening.

Yes im okay  what’s  the time?

It’s  just gone 8.30!!

F**K F**K  I said to my self.

F**K  ITS SNOW….LOTS OF SNOW.

But  when I opened up.my tent

Wow I hadn’t expected this  I quickly got dressed and ventured out  omg  it’s  snow..my brain was struggling to comprehend  the situation.

I went to get my bear bag  and  it was frozen on the pole  so  took me a while to  get down.

I quickly  packed up in a sort of daze.. I wasn’t ready for this.

The wind was freezing  so I didn’t bother with tea I  just knew I needed to get out of here.

I had all my layers on and forced my hands into my gloves as  it was so far too cold without them

Okay   im out of here now.

The trail was easy to  follow…as I just followed the footsteps.

I pushed  on  trying to keep warm  after several hours  I began to drop down into a forest. 

I saw other hikers coming south so stood aside then I noticed it was Mudbath and another female hiker but I didnt know  her name. 

Hiya snail 

Hey man congratulations. 

He suggested that i push onto the finish. 

Okay  I will (depending on terrain)

The I met another finisher  heading back  he warned me of  the overgrown trail ahead. 

I thanked him and pushed on 

As I continued  heading down the sun appeared and the snow vanished  so I need to stop  and  remove  my puffy but not yet.

Then I heard  some weird  sounds  I wasn’t sure if it was a bear growl  but then I realised it was an engine.  It was actually a Brush cutter and there were 4 guys cutting back the trail.

Wow great job guys I said and carried  on  but  soon had to stop to take off my puffy.

My pack seemed heavier today   but its got a wet tent and wet bear bag in side or maybe its tge way I packed it (In a hurry)

The day was now gorgeous. Clear blue skies but the trail was overgrown and so  I was having to push through  the foliage. Grrr.

Some is easy  other just sap  your strength and there is always a hidden rock  to  throw  you to the ground .

But I was getting nearer and nearer  omg  I’m almost  finished.

I pushed on the trail suddenly becoming wide and clear… a tell tale sign of civilisation.. and I  could see buildings and a huge lake. I had arrived at waterton lake and  there was a trash can. So I dumped my  trash, i was just checking on what direction I was to head when Gargoyle  appeared 

HI I havnt seen you  since Leadore

God when did I last see you?

Think it was in the  helia.. no Leadore

Wow that long ago…

He was waiting for freinds to catch up..

I just had  4 miles to go…

So sped off  typically as you approach the finish line the trail  is  awfully overgrown  and  with roots to trip you up and make you fail. But I  was near.. and getting more and more excited…

3miles to go 2 Miles to  go   1Mile  to  go 

Omg  I’m here

The monument..

. Its done.

Gargoyles wife and mum were here also two day hikers  who were amazed at  my journey.

Gargoyles wife  Spacepants  took  my  photos and  watched me celebrate with a bottle of champagne that I had carried since Helena. 

Omg  it’s  done..

I waited for Gargoyle and  his team to arrive then celebrated with them .

Okay  im done  now off to Canada.. 

It’s another 4 miles but  god I’m so so happy  ..as I climbed my last hill I could see Waterton in the distance my destination.

I began to decend and then I’m.in the parking lot.

The two guys who had witnessed my finish were here and so offered to drive me to the local hotel.

The offered to wait but I waved them away (mistake)

As there was no vacancies..F**k that  wasnt  the plan …

They suggested  a hotel up the street.  So I plodded on..

Yes they had room so I booked in for two nights. I’m in the “Romantic” suite  looks really nice …expensive but  I deserve  it.

Once settled in washed  and brushed I headed out for dinner for my celebratory meal.

I had a margarita to start , A great margarita . Then crab cakes and for mains prawn and lobster linguine 

Shall I have desert hell yeah lol oh and maybe a drambuie?

Okay  that’s me  done

I am going to chill tomorrow then hitch to Calgary  for a few days before flying home to the 🇬🇧 

Mileage  18  whoop finished.

DAY 160 Glacier Park day 6

SEP 19TH

I woke up to rain …perfect I thought. So snoozed the alarm. And again around 7 am the rain seemed to have stopped  so I made a break for the bathroom and then collected my food bag on the way back.

I quickly began to pack up as water boiled. Hot chocolate this morning.

Okay  I was ready and its not quite 8 am,  not  bad. I hoisted up my pack and  headed back to the trail  which was almost a 1/2 mile

Okay  i’m back on trail  in full wet gear as the rain is continuing  to fall so not much filming today..

Also as the clouds  are so low  you can’t see anything either. 

I pushed on as the trail seemed fairly  level  but it wasn’t long until I was climbing. The plants on the climbs were covering the trail and so my feet were soon soggy ..arrrrrhhhh. 

I  was to spent the afternoon climbing along the sides of mountains. I really like this  type of  section as normally  you get to see so much  ….but not today .I was hoping the sun might break through so i could dry my tent as its soaked making  my pack heavier.

But there looked little chance of that happening. I  crawled up one side of  a mountain crossed over to another and crawled up that one too. Again nothing to see  as I crossed the saddle and then headed straight down . This time through  thick woods  but I was soon through and once again climbing up the side of the next.

I was busy  singing *  as I met  a group of  day hikers headed in  the opposite direction.

I apologised  for my singing and they laughed as I passed  by.

Then I was back to climbing.  Then from nowhere another cdt  hiker appeared he must be shifting if  he had come from Many glacier  . He was soon past me and out of sight…wow  he is shifting…..impressed.

As  I climbed yet another mountain I was beginning to tire.  So  began to look for a decent spot to take a break. I dropped my pack and made soup hopefully that will warm me up  as I was freezing.  Well my hands were.  As I sat two more hikers came  by  mutant and dragon. I hadn’t seen either before.  Both were pushing on to waterton ,my stop for tomorrow.

Then the group of day hikers apeared who had camped  at the same spot as me yesterday.  They were fairly chatty and impressed with my hike.

Okay  miles to do although I didn’t have a lot  further to go, maybe 3 miles 

Once again I was climbing up long  sections across the face  of mountains  and the sun was desperately trying to come out.

A long way ahead in the distance I could see the day hikers. I always like a target to chase, so  increased my pace.

I eventually caught them as they had stopped for dinner.i think they were doing a 20 so were also heading to Waterton.

I wished them well before starting the long decent down into the valley . Not far to camp now I thought.  As I headed down the sun did indeed appear  and I was  soon over heating…but not too far to go. I soon spotted the food hang  Great  I’m.here. I checkedout several of the tent spots and choose one.

I undid my tent roll and took out the soaking  fly   and laid it open on some  grass. Sun do you job  I said and assembled ecrest of my tent. Inflated my pad..then went for water. Soon the fly was dry  so I put  that over my tent.

Lunch time..I grabbed my food sack  water and stove and headed for the food prep area. I threw up my rope then began to cook..tea  first then a double rain with chicken and bacon

I was just finishing up when a hiker came past  thst I recognised.it was one of the Canadian French boys. 

Hey  I shouted.

Snail he replied….and came over.

God I can’t remember when we ladt saw each other.then his hiking partner  xxxxx appeared.

God  great to see you guys.

We chatted for a few minutes then they  headed out

Okay  dinner eaten I packed up hoisted up my bag and headed to the pit toilet oh my this just made me smile.It didn’t have a surround so I guess you just sing .Sing loud

I just  got inside my tent when the rain returned followed by  very loud  claps of thunder….VERY LOUD. 

Then the wind arrived. Scary brutal wind. I was concerned thst my tent may get ripped. Do I did the best thing I took 4 ibuprofen PM. Hopefully these will knock me out ..I also foolishly canceled my alarm *

MILEAGE  12  

DAY 159 Glacier Park day 5

Sep 18th

I was in no hurry to get up as I only had 8 miles to do .

My alarm sounded at 7am and I silenced it and dozed.

I began to hear the heard of hikers  packing up and chatting wishing every one  well and  good  luck begore heading out.

At 8am  I heard the distinctive roar of gourmets stove  and decided to get up I also needed the loo.

Gourmet  was just packing up and so was Swiss Chris those two are going to do a 30 today  mad  people!!.

I’d like  to do more than my 8  or do I??

I sat at the picnic bench and boiled water for  tea.  Franzia came over to dump her spare food so I took a few  meals as I was low also detour  gave me some spare food too, so I probably have too much but better than too little. 

After breckfast I was just about to start packing up when a ranger strolled over  to our campsight there was a noise complaint  last night and she thought it may be us. I pointed out that as hikers we were all in bed by 10 am  but there was at lot of noise coming  from our  left and quite late.

OKAY  she said and headed that way.

I continued with my packing as other Cdt hikers came over to say goodbuy and wish  me and the others good luck and congratulations 

 Wow its only 30 miles to go. Whoop.

Okay  im ready.  I headed out but wanted to put my used gas canister in the recycling. 

The ranger was standing nearby so I asked if she had found the noisy ones ??

Yes they had been found and finned !! Youngsters  under 18 and drinking …….Oh Dear.

I headed out through the campsite and rejoined the trail. It was a lovely morning  so I would be stopping soon to remove a layer.

I pushed on down the trail  until I heard Snailtrainer  it was Ojay  &  Switch who had climbed up on a ledge to watch some moose.

Laters guys I shouted and pushed on as I knew I had a huge climb  to  do and I so love climbing.

The trail passed by several great waterfalls  then several amazing lakes  that mirrored the huge mountains  behind them.

Then the climb started, gently  at first then long, long switchbacks .

It was difficult to see where I was going .First I thought i was heading  up to the right  then the left. As I climbed  I was soon caught by  Ojay  Good luck snail  we  first  bumped then he was gone  but  then as he’s so fast  I could see where he was going.

OMG…are we going up  there!!.

The trail now climbed steeply up the side of a steep  mountain F**k that looks  steep and it was up and up and up.

Then it switched mountains and headed up the other side.

Again it was so steep very narrow  and slippery.  My 3 favourite  things…higher and higher and wow the views were amazing  you could see for miles and I was still not done.i walked around the next  mountain and began the climb up the other side.

Still I climbed higher  I will stop for a break when I reach the top I promised myself.

At last  I reached a plateau .

And quickly dropped my back.

Phew…  I ate  an apple and  a satummer that I had carried  out. Just then a day hiker came by he was fairly chatty and amazeds us mad hikers had completed or rather almost completed  this trail. He was just headed to the pass  so would see him on the way back. 

Then Switch came by we had a hug and wished each other well.

Switch

While I was here I went and got water as it was only 1.5 miles to camp and this was good water.

I hoisted up my back and began the rest of the climb. A few yards up I stopped to admire the views and a grizzly  walked by, just where I had been sitting

I desperately  tried to video him but my camera is so scratched it wouldn’t bloody record arrhhhh. 

Oh  well it’s my second  Grizz  so I’m fairly chuffed.

Then the day hiker  came back he had been spooked by  back bear  and  Switch  had chased him off  well done Switch

Okay  snail , i will soon be at camp..

I must have  missed the first  turning as i ended up  coming in from the other entrance. 

As I sat there a mum and baby deer came through .mum wasn’t the least bothered but her young baby was more skittish

I soon found the camp and choose a tent spot. I quickly put up my tent  then grabbed my food and headed for the food prep area. It had  great  seating . And of course hanging rail

I drank two beers that I had hiked out with then made several burritos  with the extra food that I was given . I wasjust chilling when two other day hikers arrived.

We chatted a while before I headed back to my tent

Mileage  8 

DAY 158 Glacier Park day 4

Sep 17th

I woke around 6.30 then dozed until 7  once up I was amazed on how many hikers had arrived in the night or rather late  .there must have been  14 hikers on a site meant for 4 tents ..it was great to see so many faces all eating there  breckfast and drinking coffee.

I used the loo retrieved my food bag and packed up.

Leaving camp at just gone 8 am.

I crossed the wobbly  bridge then was back on trail.

The next section was going to be uphill for over 6 miles.i was really looking forward to that.

I hadn’t gone far  when the climb started.  Up and up and it was fairly over grown in places. So I went into  chug mode. After  3  hours I began to get glimpses  of amazing views   then I exited the trees  and omg  the views were stunning   I stared for several minutes  before   walking on .

I was  now climbing up   the side of the mountain  again with amazing views.soon I was atvthe top  and stooped again to just look at the views.as I sat there detour and Cheeks arrived. 

We chatted for several  minutes before I left to cross the saddle and head down..Once again the views on this side  were once again amazing . I began to head down following the switch backs  down and down and down. 

When I got to the bottom where it leveled out I decided to stop for lunch  well it was now 1

I made soup and ate snacks..I wanted to eat more  but I’m a little low…Bad planning

I was just chilling when Swiss Chris arrived..we chatted a while

Eventually I emerged by the lake and the huge lodge which was sadly  closed so no beer. Soda  or snacks sob sob.

Okay 5 miles to go for me I headed out but had to keep stopping to stare at the amazing Vistas.

I carried on around the lodge  and  headed along the road  ,the campsite  is ahead. I asked the Ranger just to be sure I was at the right place as it was a huge campsite. I walked in and found the hiker spot and quickly put up my tent.   Oh fresh water  so  no filtering  bonus. 

As I sat  at the picnic table  several more hikers appeared some stopped at this site other went across the road

I cooked tea  and relaxed…

The girls where going out to dinner..and promised to bring back beer. I sat at the picnic table with gourmet and Swiss Chris until.i got cold and headed to my bed.

Later there girls xame vavkveith beer so i rejoined the party.

There was Swiss Chris,ojay, xxx. Dollar general,detour,sledge, Cheeks.gourmet and myself.

We chatted untill sbout 9 then all headed to our tents night all

Mileage 15      36 miles to go!!

DAY 157 Glacier Park day

Sep 16th

I had cancled all my early alarms except 6.30.

It was still dark  when I emerged from my tent ..as I’ve headed towards Canada the sun  too is becoming lazy  at getting  up

It used to light at 5.30  now it’s 7. 30. 

I retrieved my food bag then  checkled out the  new pit toilet. 

Very nice lol.

As I was walking back to my tent  I passed Anvil. 

I warmed the seat up for  you

THANKS  brother he replied.

As I began to pack up  there was a sprinkle of rain.thankfully  it  only lastest a few minutes as I really didn’t want a wet tent again

Okay  all done. I hoisted up my pack and set off. 

As i passed the food prep area   Anvil ,Detour  and Cheeks  were  having breakfast. Goodluck to all of you if we don’t meet again I said.

Detour said it will be later as we are at the same camp

I had to laugh. 

I set off down the  trail  it was fairly cool so I had two layers on   but after less than  mile I had to stop to remove  it  as i was soon overheating .

The first part was through dead trees and after two miles  I was supposed to take the short cut,But I had such  good pace that I had long passed  it.  F**K  Oh well onwards.  I began to follow  the river  until I came to another large suspension bridge .

This one was really bouncy…but I was safely across.  I then had a short climb  before  following the river.  The trail now turned sharply  right and  climbed up the mountain via switchbacks before levelling out.

I pushed on down the trail  until I met a forest ranger . 

Not far to go he said to me and I had  to agree.He had canoed across the huge lake to get to the trail…impressed

He was heading  to my previous camp to give it a tidy .

Soon I arrived at the lake  with amazing  views all the way around. WOW.its just so breathtakingly  beautiful. 

I was to spend the rest of the day  walking around this massive lake. 

But  it was just so amazing!!.

As I walked I came across two fuel bottles. I would of carried them but they looked as if they had been left for a reason. 

The next corner had the answer  two forest  men were trying to remove a huge stump using a block and tackle. 

I thanked them for their effort and carried on. I began to pass numerous blowdoens but all had been cut. Wow that must have been a nightmare  I thought

After the blowdowms  the trail began a little  overgrown ,passable but bloody annoying.then I had a  couple of trees  to clamber over.

It  was nearing 12. So when a nice spot appeared  I stopped for lunch. I made soup and ate a few snacks .

Okay  I dudnt have big miles to do today  so about 3 more and I should be at my camp for today which is Reynolds.

As I pushed on down  the trail I began to see numerous waterfalls  some  just  magical looking.  After about another  hour  I emerged  at a huge waterfall  and began to meet  numerous  people. It must be a big tourist  spot  as I pased dozens of people as I headed down.

Sat  by  the side of some Rocks were Shotgun and Sledge. They had both been swimming  its great in snailtrainer shotgun said..

I’m sure it is i said but I’ll pass.

I continued on down passing more and more people.  Wow its so busy  and everyone smells so clean. 

At the bottom was a bridge where the two rivers meet. 

Omg  it was wow the left fork dropped down a gorge  and  was a swirling mess of white water  that looked totally amaxing.

Someone offered to take my photo.  So  that was rather cool..

I crossed over the bridge and mingled with the “Toursists”   eventually my trail branched off   and it was only me and nature again   untill  Sledge came by  we wished each other well. .we shotgun should appeared shortly and she did  

We laughed as I’ve only  a mile to go  she’s heading to many glacier another 12 miles  (6hrs) but she may only  take   4.5 as she’s fast.

It wadnt long until I arrived at the signpost for my camp.

I had to cross yet another suspension bridge.  But this one was okay. 

Okay. I checked the camp map  then went looking for a tent spot.

The first one was really gravely so I went to look at an other.

This will do  you could possible get in two tents  but it was really uneven . So I  moved my tent to the front of he plot.

Soon my tent was up and I was settled. 

I took my food bag and headed for the kitchen area. Dropped my gear then went and got water.

I put my stove together and got water on the go before throwing  my bear line over the hang.

When I returned to the kitchen area  I was annoyed at the amount of flies that  were buzzing around. 

Arrrrrhhhh..but its what it is. 

I made tea  then cooked dinner followed by several more cups of tea. 

Then the girls arrived.,Cheeks and Detour they went in search of a spot as Detour’s boyfriend is coming to stay .

I finished up.hung my bag.checked out  the pit toilet  then headed for  my tent.

No  animals to report today ,just  amaxing scenery  WOW

Mileage 15.

DAY 156 glacier Park Killer goats day 2

SEP 15TH

I seemed to have slept well through the storm  and woke refreshed.  As I was in no  hurry  as I only needed 15 miles  I dozed  until 7am.

I went to  use the loo and was surprised to see other tents. They must have arrived late as I didn’t  hear  anyone.

Next I went to retrieve  my food bag and once again was surprised to  see  5  other bags hanging  there..

I headed back to my tent and began to  pack up as my water came to the boil. 

I ate two breakfast  bars downed my tea  and I was ready to go.

I pulled on my pack  god   it seems heavier today  bit  then I have a wet tent and ursack  .

I marched out of camp and rejoined the trail

It was fairly cool  so I had on a second layer  but my hands were freezing..  come on out sun.

Due to all the rain the plants  were soaking and as i walked through them   my feet and shorts also became soaked.

  As I walked I called out HI bear  just to be safe.  It wasnt long until.i reached the second camp  4  miles away.  Good I thought I’m making good time  and I was heading down… make the most of it snail as the big big climb is coming up.   The sun was  now beginning to take control  as I  began the climb  so  soon stopped to remove my second layer.

.I looked up at the trail ,it went on spiralling up the mountain and  beyond..Here  we go I said to myself  and set off  climbing climbing climbing.. the time ticked by as  I went round headland after  headland

 Them in front i saw something white…  it was a small heard of mountain goats  about 8 of them

I watched them hesdingvtowards me  then they saw me snd  decided to head vertically up.

Theses animals amaze me ,they have no fear and  jump from rock to rock with verticle drops

I filmed them climbing then had to run as they dislodged  a pile of rocks that clattered around me.lucklily  missing  me OMG  that was close. 

I  carried on   but when I looked back I could see two hikers closing in on me. At first I thought it was Anvil and special-K  but  it was two American freinds  just out hiking.  At the pass l stopped for a breather  and then Legs  arrived he told me the story of a bear charge and having to disperse his bear spray  but  got more on himself  somehow.

LEGS

At  the saddle the views were amaxing  and  there appeared less smoke ahead.

Better still it was now downhill all the way to the camp  whoop.

I follwed the others down the hill  untill it leveled out 

Sat here was legs  drying out his tent. Which was exactly what I had planned to do  and so did the two Americans. So I decided to have dinner  as my tent dried. 

Okay  onwards snail..7 miles to go so 5ish.

It was a lovely afternoon  and I had to keep stopping to  take photos and videos of the amazing landscapes and breathtaking views as I’ve said so many times my phone/ camera does not do it justice.   The scenery was constantly changing, wide open meadows  then pushing through overgrown foliage then clear wide trails again. Soon I came to a suspension bridge  it was very bouncy and swayed as I crossed quite  unnerving. But I was soon safely across   only to cross another where both creeks met. Again very bouncy and swingy bridge. 

I was getting nearer and would soon be at camp.

As I came to brow of the hill I could see the huge lake beneath  and towards the top was a animal  it was a moose  standing in the lake  and where I would be camping!!!.

I circled down and was soon at the first camp ( where the 2 Americans  were staying)

As I got nearer I could see them both. Can you see the moose I asked?

Yes he’s still there. 

Great I think that’s where I’m staying .

I said goodbye to them and safe hikes and headed out.

I began to get nearer and nearer to the moose.  So slowed  ready to hide behind a tree if he decided to  charge. As they can be unpredictable . He didn’t seem bothered by my presence  but  I didn’t  loiter…just in case. When past I took more photos.

What an amazing beast  with fill horns or  racks  or whatever they are called. And I’m amazed how long he can keep his head under  water. Okay  campsite  snail.

I soon arrived at the campsite and chose a tent spot dumped my stuff and soon had my tent up. I then grabbed my food and smellies  and went to the food area. 

I had  just finished cooking when  7lb hammer and shotgun appeared. While they set up their  tents I began to play with a chipmunk  feeding him a raison. 

But then he looked at shotguns crushed beer can and ran off with it ,  I could help but laugh

The two returned to cook dinner  closely followed by special-K  and Anvil. Then the two girls arrived Cheeks and detour

I packed up hung my food and headed for my tent. I heard another hiker arrive  but  couldnt see who it was

That’s me  done   good night

Milage  15  cool.

DAY 155 glacier Park day 1 It’s a GRIZZ!!

Sept 14 

I was awake before six and could see a flurry of activity  in the dark as hikers  got dressed ready to head to the permit office to wait  for it to open. As they were getting scarce.

it soon went quite and I dozed  but really should be making a move.

Once  it was light  I let out the air from my mattress  and begun to pack up .

Omg  I have far too much stuff. can I carry it all?

Somehow it was all inside my pack  I weighted it out of curiosity  65lb…bloody  hell…

Most of the other hikers were going for the  breckfast Buffet at the lodge. But I thought if I was to do that I would  be ill before I had completed a mile. 

So I grabbed some spare fruit which I woofed  and a soda  then I was ready. I hoisted my pack and  groaned.  It actually wasn’t that bad. 

I headed off down the road and rejoined the trail. It was cool but not cold  and the smoke  appeared to have lifted  and so I could see the mountains. 

I headed off down the trail music on I’m heading to  Canada  whoop..

The trail was a little up and down   but  it always is  ha ha. It was 5  miles to  Two medicine. And then after this it was going to be climbing….such fun but with a heavy pack  it could be a nightmare. 

I pushed on singing away  . Well if my voice doesn’t scare the bears then nothing will  oh and I have been reunited with my bear spray  so  I’m now invincible   haha  in my dreams.

It wasn’tong untill.i approached  two medicine walked  past the rangers  hut.(where I had got my permits the day before)

There  were about a dozen people outside  all mingling around. I ignored them and walked down though the park and towards  the river.  I stopped at a map  before the bridge to check  my campsite but l it wasn’t on there..I  was just pondering when a couple   came along  and commented on my huge pack. Well I was able to make them laugh. 

Okay  snail onwards. I crossed over the bridge and began to climb.it wasn’t long until two medicine  was far below. 

Being a park the paths are kept fairly neat and tidy  and the elevations  not too steep Thank god lol.

I was soon at the top and  was flanked either side  by huge masses of rock. .I pushed on through several meadows and them  I laughed  there was a pretty neat bridge  but  there was no water…..

I was once again checking my map when a  local elderly man  came by  he pointed me in the right direction  and headed off he was going to do a loop.

I pushed on up the valley and was amazed at the breathtaking Vistas in front of me. Sadly the smoke had returned  so  you  couldnt see further than the mountains in front of you.

I pushed on down the trail as it meandered in and out of  forests. Then I  could see a person up ahead,I called out  hiker  approaching  but she still jumped.  Sorry  I said as I passed her in front was her partner enjoy your hike I said  as I past him by.

Several more yards and I met the man coming  back.

He  motioned to me so I stopped and removed my ear buds

There a rather large grizzly  up ahead  he said.

It’s about a 100 yards when you see a log in the trail.

Take the safety off of your bear spray and approach with caution. 

OMG….A GRIZZ.

I removed my earbuds and stowed them . Then began walking forward slowly calling  out HI bear  every  few  yards…eventually I came to the  log  my senses  were now on high alert.  Bears  are normally skittish around humans and so if they hear you coning  they are normally off. Grizzly’s are  not afraid  and gently will ignore  you unless they have cubs a carcass  or  you scare or threaten them..

Even so  I was a little afraid  well actually  scared  shitless…  I edged  on up the trail continuing to call out  HI Bear…

And then he was  in front of me Bloody  huge. He  lumbered  up the trail so I hung  back  still calling hi bear  so he knew I was there. 

I have to say this grizz was beautiful  his coat a silvery  grey with a white band under his huge head.

I continued  walking after  him but slowly as this was the waY I needed  to go.he didn’t seem bothered  by  me and kept stopping to gorge on huckleberries. I was getting a little braver  so began to ask the bear  if I could pass…and slowly  I walked passed   him my heart was going like the clappers  as I carried on up the trail still talking to the bear..

Phew  I felt that  I was safe  but kept calling  HI bear  as I continued on down the trail.

THEN…..OMG

A huge  black bear  the biggest that I had even seen lunged  at me then  stood up and roared at me  I guessing we both scared each other. But omg I thought I was going to die..but then the bear  retreated and I waked on rather quickly  my  heart almost busrting through my chest. 

I had been shouting HI bear  so maybe he was asleep  and I woke  him but omg  he scared the crap  out of me.

So for the rest of the afternoon I kept calling hi bear  as I hiked on I soon came out of the forest and was amazed at sights in front of me a huge lake surrounded  by huge  cliffs. Wow..my camera doesn’t do it justice.  But  it’s just wow.

But now I had to climb up and out of the valley and it was steep.  So I thought I can stop  calling bear now  until I saw  several huge mounds of bear  scat so I  began cling once more.

Once at the top the views were simply breathtaking  most 360 views   and once again its a shame about the smoke as you could normally be able to see for miles. 

Looking down there were another section of lakes .I think that’s where I’m.heading I thought.

A few yards  on was a signpost confirming   my thoughts.

I began to head down .it was steep even with the switchbacks .

Back and fourth getting lower and lower.  Eventually emerging by  one of the lakes.  I decided to take 5 minutes and grab water although there was water at my designated  campsite. I was booked in at Morning star which was about 3 miles away.

I was still heading down  and in some places I  struggled as it was slippery. 

So I needed to concentrate  while still shouting hi bear. 

I’m here great  I see a sign announcing the campsite  and there is a map. 

Drop toilet, camping,food prep area and hanging pole.

I find a suitable spot and soon have my tent up. I grab all my food items  and then explore. 

I find the food prep area and  pole. Firstly I throw my rope,  done  then I began to cook.

I’m just about to eat  dinner when it begins  to rain. 

Bugger  I say  . I grab  the food  bits and put them in my ursack.

 I hoist  them up and tie  it off. My tea and dinner I  grab and head back to my tent. I’m comfortable  eating in my tent  but  not today.. so I eat in the vestibule.  The rains  now gets  much heavier. When it stops I clean my pot and then put it a few yards fom my tent with a large  rock on top of it… fingers crossed.

Okay   so no  late  cups of tea or  hot chocolate  in my tent until I’m out of glacier

Night all

DAY 154 ZERO in East Glacier

Sep 13th

 woke  up late  and listened to the world around me.

Once up the hostel was buzzing 

we headed to the lodge on mass for the all you can eat buffet $22

We had to wait several minutes until they could accommodate  us.

Once seated  coffee arrived then i headed for the buffet.

Grabbed a plate and dug in. scrambled egg,country potatoes and bacon. Although I wish they would cook the bacon so much. This was followed by pancakes smothered in huckleberry sauce,  divine.  After that several bowls of fresh fruit salad  before going for more bacon and eggs. 

All this was washed down with several vatts of orange juice and coffee.

Once I  could eat no more I headed to the hostel

Next job the important one was permits.  I can’t hike further until I obtain this. I managed to catch a lift to  Two medicine with Legs.

I wasn’t botheedxzbout doing big miles though legs wanted 28s.

I left most of the planning to the ranger as I  didn’t want to do big milage.i wanted to make the most of the “End”

 So I have a mix of 18 and 15 miles to the border so about 7 days. sorted.  Others are doing 28’s  that’s too much   especially as the finish line is in sight

Okay  laundry I rounded up my stinky gear and headed to the  laundrette . An hr later I’m done and headed back.

Next chore was the post office there was a ride organised  so I tagged on.

The postoffice lady thought I was moving in with the  amount of boxes I had here.

Far  too many…… 

I grabbed my gear and headed back omg   can I carry all of this stuff  in my pack ……

I went through my gear and  filled my pack

As I’m chilling there  is a steady stream of hikers arriving and leaving  so  many faces  new and old  to wish well  and  safe travels too.

.Next job shower as I stink. 

Omg  that’s so good I’m clean…for a while.

Once my chores are done  it’s just chilling time. Beer and veg  out…..

DAY 153 Heading to East Glacier day 5

SEP  12th

I was up early determined to  push on to glacier. It was still dark as I packed up .

I made my cupppa and then I was ready . I headed out down the trail in the dusk. I like this time of the morning  and was surprised how warm it was compared to the last  few days..

The trail seemed fairly flat  and  so I was able  to push

It wasnt long until I began to decend  and was soon in a big camp site  with water spigot  and toilets. As I walked through the park I could see a large obelisk. So went to have a closer look.

It was dedicated to the pioneer who pushed through the railway. 

I walked back to the trail crossed over the road then railway  and entered the forest. 

At the entrance there were several warning signes about  the danger of bears  and to carry bear spray. Which was slightly unsettling. Considering   that I had no bear spray as I had foolishly  left mine on a rock.

I headed on  trying  to  just look ahead….. the forest was fairly cool as I pushed on 

After  3hrs I stopped for a break and ate a few snacks although  my food bag didn’t have much left  in it. Mid afternoon I seemed  to be climbing  more but  nothing  too scary . Okay i will take lunch soon  I decided  and as I crossed another creek  by bridge I decided to water  up and  stop for  food a little later.

But  I seemed to be a on a role  so didn’t want to stop..eventually I  am out of the forest and on a widebroad path.

I decided to take 5 minutes.

I switched on my phone and imeaditly had service  and OMG a text from shotgun she had found my bearspray and my note and wasn’t far behind  me  fantastic

Bloody fantastic.

Whoop Whoop I  also had a text from cash saying where I should stay in town which was about 2 miles away. 

So pushed on with  a little more speed  and  I’m here I am in Glacier…

I walked up the road and found the hostel.

$15  bargain I found a spot on the floor and spread out my gear.

The boys where going for lunch so I joined then .I ordered Bbq ribs that were excellent ,washed down with a few beers.

As I made my way back I could see other hikers heading in and one was Shotgun..omg thank you so so much

She was also pleased to see me and was so pleased with my note that she had kept. And I was so happy to get my bear spray back

Later  on there were about 8 hikers who needed ice cream so we all ended up walking to town  1 mile away 

I ordered  the huckleberry ice-cream which  is amazing  I just love the stuff. Plus a six pack for later a tub of strawberry ice cream and chips for later too

Huckleberry ice-cream

It was a fun walk back.

SHOTGUN

Back at the hostel  the atmosphere was buzzing  as there   were hikers heading out and hikers coming back  from finishing. I stayed up to about 10 when my bed began to call me 

Milage  18 

DAY 152 Heading to East Glacier day 4

Sep 11th

It was another cold morning and so I decided to have a lay in and cancelled all the alarms except 7am.

And even then I was slow to emerge from my bag. 

Once up i quickly put on water for tea and began the strip down.

I checked on my note still there.

Although I did hear several hikers come through but they were extremely late.

I hit the trail at 9. so it will not be big miles today but I think I can do 20. 

I headed off down the trail   and once again it was really pleasant to walk on and so I was able to get a great pace as it meandered through the forests. I croosed several meadows before re-entering more forests. As I crossed the meadows I got great views of the mountains on both sides but once again they  were spoilt by smoke.

Not sure which fire this smoke is from. I carried on , soon crossing my first creek .i was able to safely ford  so dry feet.

The morning was still early  but  was heating up fast so I soon needed to stop to remove a layer.

Oh that’s much better… I pushed on climbing  small  hills then descending  but  I was feeling great . Still buzzing from yesterday’s  mountain lion just need to see a Grizz now  but not too close !!!. As I walked I began to notice alot more bear scat  but they all seem to be hiding… not a bad thing..unlike the stupid grouse who follow  the trail as you walk behind  them .

I began to cross  several more creeks  and decided  at the next one I would stop for lunch. 

Then a group of young hikers came the other way they all said congratulations and we’ll done which made me feel great  and then around the corner  four more.

Okay lunch. I found a spot and dropped my pack.although my food bag is a little poor as I didn’t buy  enough in town. A miscalculation..it happens  and means my pack is lighter ha ha.

Wow I must of been pushing as I have  completed 12 miles and with a late  start. So another 10 would be good….but it all depends on the terrain .

I hoisted my pack crossed another creek  and was soon in a burn .. the trail was fairly flat  so the going was good.but for some reason the trail kept climbing  up  and then descending. There seemed no reason for  this apart to bloody annoy me.. I was now entering blowdown city.  There were literally   hundreds  but the trail crews had dealt with them .

Thank you so much guys  your job is  not enviable .

But I was still heading up and down I’m sure the trail could go just straight.

Once up another climb I checked my phone for service and yes. 

It was then that I learnt the sad news that our Queen  had sadly died. What a beacon. What an amazing lady  .Rest in peace mam.she will be missed.

I believe Charles will be King.

When I have better  service I will find out more  but very very sad.

I think the next few miles passed in a daze  as I was deep in thought about our Queen.

Okay  I want to do 4  more miles +/- it’s now  4pm. 

But  after my next silly climb I had to force my way through a very over grown trail. This really pleased me ….@#£%…

This saps my energy  and then the blowdowns were back  and  omg  it was 2 miles of absolute hell.. some were easy others  needed several attempts to climb  and a lot I had to crawl under. I was soon exhausted and my legs torn up with the sharp broken branches. I was done.but needed water which was near then a suitable spot. 

I filled up my water at the next creek  then staggered on as I had no juice  left in my tank. 

Come on please a spot  I was feeling dizzy as I headed down a slope  and had to muster  more energy to climb up the otherside and once up.A SPOT   thank  you

I had to sit down for five minutes  to settle my self.then I put up my tent and cook dinner. 

Miles  22