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Glacier National Park
Covey Meadow Loop
or The Adventures of Slick and Slack


Slick and Slack were adventurous young fellows. At least Slick was, but Slack was the follower. They had been friends through school, as far as Slack could remember, anyway. They had grown up in the city and had never gone far from it.

West Enterance Glacier Park Sign

One day as they were spinning bottle caps for fun, Slick told Slack that he had heard about a place called Glacier National Park. It was way up in Montana, and Slick had decided he wanted to save up his money and go there. Now to convince Slack to find a job and do the same.

Slack decided that it would be nice to see the place too, and took a job at the car wash.

Since they had been used to city busses and subways, they didn’t own a car.
They would have to fly.
Slack wasn’t sure he wanted to get on a plane but if Slick could fly, he guessed he could too. Slick had courage enough for the both of them.

They both worked for several months and even though Slick had saved more, they set a date to go.

They arrived at the Dallas Airport, and started through the check point. Slick had no problem but Slack was mortified {and so was Slick} when Slack had to take off his shoes and lo and behold he had two different colored socks on. Slick came to his rescue by telling the lady that Slack had another pair ,just like those, in his bag. After this troubling episode they went on through the crowds to find their gate. As they were boarding the plane, Slack almost lost his feeble courage but Slick gave him a good solid push and on the plane he went. { Almost head first }

Slick knew that he needed to have Dramamine with him just in case Slack felt sick. Well, going up in the air proved that it was a good decision. It wasn’t long before Slack’s snores amused or annoyed every one around him.  Slick just leaned back and enjoyed the clouds they flew through.

As they were arriving at the Glacier International Airport,  Slick shook Slack and told him it was time to wake up. At the gate a bleary eyed Slack stumbled off the plane into the beautiful airport. The first sights he saw were the large wall murals, he had never seen pictures of such high mountains, and beautiful scenery before. Slick made sure he managed the few steps down, since he was still groggy from the medicine.

They picked up their luggage and found a taxi to take them to their Hotel in Kalispell. As they arrived at the "Outlaw Inn" they were met with such polite and helpful people. These were not unconcerned, unfriendly attendants. These were "Down Home " western style, good folks.

The next morning they were off to Glacier National Park. As they met others at the McDonald lodge, they stood in amazement looking at the decor around them. What a wonderful place with the heads of animals on the walls and the "Old West" design everywhere. There was nothing like this back in the city.

Since this was their first hike, Slick had chosen a short one to see how Slack would like walking. No busses or Taxi here. They hired a ride to the Covey Meadow Trailhead. The start to their hike is just South of the Polebridge entrance station, on the Inside North Fork Road. The East side of the road is the starting point. It’s very easy to follow this trail. As they were leaving the Covey Meadows, they went into a forest that is recovering from a fire in 1988. These are mostly Lodgepole Pines and grow thick. Only a few taller trees of Western Larch were standing there also. This is only a two mile hike but a good one for starters. The trail will soon be near the Polebridge Ranger Station.

Slick and Slack had easy walking because the underbrush had never grown thick after the fire went through. After leaving the new forest their trail leads them to an old river bench. They may sit awhile along this dry creek bed if it is late summer when the creek is dry. If it’s early Spring this may be a damp wet spot. Their trail will lead them out again into Covey meadow.

Slick and Slack sat down for awhile in the forest and listened to the unfamiliar sounds. For all of their lives they had been used to traffic sounds with horns blowing and people milling about them. What a quiet place this was, with bird voices and the wind singing through the pines. And the sweet air !. No exhaust here !. The air was so fresh and scented with evergreen and moss. They felt as if they never wanted to leave this wonderful place. The fast paced life in the city seemed so far away ---- But wait ---- there is more to see !

As they left the forest and all of it’s beauty they once again see the Covey Meadow. This time, they had been told to sit quietly out of sight to watch for the animals in the field of wildflowers. What beautiful flowers they were too. This is bear country so they were a little nervous but had been told to never try and get closer for pictures. Keep your distance and do not run if you do see one. Calmly move away from them. They don’t want to be close to humans any more than humans want to be close to them. As our friends sat still and watched they saw elk and deer. There were lots of little squirrels and Oh ! So many song birds .

As Slick and Slack sat, they had a great view of the Livingston Range to the East. Slick wondered why he had waited so long to come to this peaceful, wonderful place. But Tomorrow they would see more of the mountains and valleys. He knew, from just this first day that he would be able to get Slack here again. It was more than worth all of the trouble.

The Adventures of Slick and Slack, written by Verna Parks.  


 

 



Glacier National Park is located in the northwest corner of Montana, just north of Columbia Falls. The park encompasses more than one million acres and is home to grizzly bear, moose, elk, along with 63 varieties of wild mammals. While most of the roads in Glacier National Park are closed off during the winter, this provides miles and miles of tracks for snowshoeing and cross country skiing. Visitors are seldom around in the dead of winter, so the muffled hush of the snow covered woods is especially enticing and serene.

A ski or snowshoe trip along the Going-to-the-Sun Road, which is one of the most scenic roads in North America, is a great option, according to park rangers. The road is closed to cars from September or October until snowmelt, usually in June. Several short hiking trails branch off from the road, which would be excellent for snowshoeing or skiing in the winter season.

 Once you have your gear, head up to Glacier National Park for an exciting adventure. Guided snowshoe trips are available, led by a park naturalist, and are highly recommended. If you are looking for an informative tour, snowshoeing is an easy way to explore the winter wonderland of this unique park. Snowshoeing will provide even the novice an effortless activity so your senses are more in tune with your environment and your guide's knowledge on the history, wildlife, geology, and biology of this precious ecosystem.

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