Archive for the ‘Bicycling’ Category

Active Summer Fun at the Whitefish Mountain Resort

July 8th, 2013 by kimtaylor

Summer activities abound at the Whitefish Mountain Resort

Summer activities abound at the Whitefish Mountain Resort

If you think the Whitefish Mountain Resort is just for skiing, think again.  The Summer season has the mountain humming with activities for kids of all ages. And since it’s just a short 10 min drive from our front door, it’s easy to get there.

Scenic Lift Rides: Get whisked up to the summit of the Big Mountain via an open chair lift or enclosed gondola for a scenic ride that will have you oohing and aahing over views of the entire Flathead Valley and Glacier National Park. Round trip tickets are $12 for adults and $8 for juniors (7 – 12 yrs) or seniors 65+.  Rides are free for kids 6 and under and for 2012/13 winter season pass holders.  You can also buy a one way ticket for just $6, in case you want to hike up/down the mountain.

Hiking: There is a great hiking trail that takes you up to the top of the mountain.  Read more about it in our previous blog post.

Zip Line Tours: Whiz atop the trees 300 feet above ground as you glide along on your mountain adventure. The zip line tours are growing in popularity by leaps and bounds so reservations are recommended to avoid disappointment.  Prices are $75 for a 5 –zip tour and $84 for a 7-zip tour.

Mountain biking: Bike rentals are available on-mountain and with two new trails scheduled to open by August 1, there will be more that 25 miles of lift accessed free-ride and cross country mountain bike trails. The Summit trail offers spectacular views while Runaway Train offers adrenaline pumping free ride biking.  You can have your bike taken to the summit, for a downhill ride all the way. Prices vary.

Alpine Slide:  Great for kids and adults alike, take a sled and race down straight-a-ways and banked curves. Children under 48” have to ride with an adult. $8 per ride, discounts for multiple rides.

Aerial Adventure Park: Strap in and challenge yourself on a variety of treetop courses that range in difficulty – cross suspended bridges and cable walk ways, climb on nets and ladders, swing on trapezes and negotiate other fun elements.  $39/Adults or $29/Kids 12 and under.

Spider Monkey Mountain: Just for kids!  They can play all day for just $10. Children find their way up through a webbed tower and at the top are rewarded with a giant slide ride down.

Summit Nature Center: Located at the Summit House atop Big Mountain, the Nature Center offers a fun place for families to explore with hands-on discovery to learn about the mountain environment.  They also offer a daily wildflower nature discovery walk in July & August.  Free.

Dining: There are plenty of dining options available in the Whitefish Mountain Resort: For Lunch head to Base Lodge Bar & Café for casual lunch dining, The Bierstube offers a patio and serves up great burgers and beer or the Summit House restaurant where you can dine in the highest restaurant in NW Montana with views of Glacier National Park.  For Dinner the Hellroaring Saloon and Eatery has an outside deck and offers casual fare starting at 5 pm.  For a more upscale choice enjoy fine dining at Café Kandahar with Award-Winning chef Andy Blanton.

The Whitefish Mountain Resort… it’s just not for skiing!  For more info visit their website: www.skiwhitefish.com

Author: Sarah Stewart

Spring Cycling the Going to the Sun Road

April 29th, 2013 by kimtaylor

A welcome sign of Spring cyclists in Montana.

A welcome sign of Spring cyclists in Montana.

High-tech cycling gear not needed.

High-tech cycling gear not needed.

 

Beautiful vistas await intrepid Spring bicyclists.

Beautiful vistas await intrepid Spring bicyclists.

 

When the Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park is fully open from West to East, cyclists play second fiddle to cars and the Park’s famous red busses, called Jammers.  During the peak Summer months, this famous scenic road is closed to bicyclists between 11 am and 4 pm. That means you have to set you’re alarm clock pretty darn early to make it up to Logan Pass and back down before 11 am.  Others prefer to hit the “night shift” and start up in the evening after 4pm, others wait for a full moon and cycle up by moonlight.

But, as the locals know, in the Spring time Cyclists have the road to themselves, save for a mountain goat that may wander in front of you (if you’re lucky) or a mama bear and her cubs scurrying up the hillside.

Yesterday we cycled the Going-to-the Sun Road in Glacier National Park, and experienced just about every type of weather you can think of, rain, sleet, a bit of hail, wind and at times sunshine.  We passed about 3 dozen other cyclists on our way from Lake McDonald to the Loop and about 3 miles beyond.

Tips for Spring cycling:

  • Be prepared for any type of weather.  It may look nice and sunny when you leave, but the weather can change quickly.  A windbreaker type jacket is a must, even on a sunny day, as the high speeds you’ll hit on the way down will cool you down quickly.
  • Bring a basic bicycle repair kit.  If you get a flat tire and you’ve got no way to fix it, you’re out of luck.  You’ll be hoofing back to your car. We ran into a stretch of unpaved road from Avalanche campground for a couple of miles, so you never know. A puncture could really ruin your day if you’re not prepared.  That being said, make sure you check that your bike is in good working order, especially your brakes!  You’ll be glad you did as you speed down the road on your way back.
  • Bring water and snacks.  During the Spring don’t count on Park concessions being open, so if you want to not give into your growling stomach and turn around early, throw in a granola bar or two into your bag.
  • Don’t forget your camera and have fun!

    Author: Sarah Stewart