Whitefish, Montana

Our Holidays were spent in the snowy climes of Montana, in the bustling little town of Whitefish.  With skiing, snowmobiling, ice skating, fishing and exploring on our itinerary, the week flew by.  We met our daughter, Nicole and her husband, Robert at the airport in Salt Lake City, and then continued the flight together into Kalispell.  The week started off with an occasionally politically incorrect Christmas Program at the Alpine Theater Project.  The talent gathered together on the stage for the two-hour program blew us all away.  Who knew Whitefish had such quality entertainment!?

As an avid fly fisherman, Robert's priority was to get out on a body of water,
irregardless of the temps.  As it turns out, I guess it can actually be too cold for fly fishing.  In the 22 degree afternoon temperature, the eyes on the rod continued to freeze as he reeled in the line.  Another afternoon, the icy spot he had chosen to stand on turned out to not be quite frozen enough.  After a brief swim in the brisk waters, he decided to give up fishing for this trip.

Since we have enjoyed our opportunities with snowmobiling in the past, we arranged a trip with a guide up Whitefish Mountain.  Clear weather for the day made this a perfect outing.  Trees were heavily laden with snow but views from the top of the mountain were spectacular.  Returning down the final length of the trip after sunset added a new, slightly spooky dimension.

Driving into Glacier National Park this time of year is considerably different than being here during the summer season.  All the services are closed down, even the entrance is self-service.  The
Going to the Sun Road was open for 12 miles, but we saw only a handful of vehicles. 

Stumptown Ice Den, the local ice rink, was located about half a mile from where we were staying and became the Christmas Day outing for Alan and Nicole.  Alan grew up ice skating, but it's not something we do in Florida or that Nicole has had much experience with, so they were both happy to make it through the outing without a fall, and were pleased to remember how to skate backwards and do some spins.  I knew better than to tempt fate. 

Of course, we couldn't be there this time of year without doing some skiing.  Robert, unfortunately, was feeling under the weather, so opted out on the opportunity to snow board, but Alan and Nicole took to the slopes on skis at the Whitefish Mountain Resort. Elated but exhausted they returned to the lodge a few hours later.  Skiing only once every few years means rediscovering muscles you have forgotten about, but the outing went well, with only a couple of minor spills.

Costa Rica will be our next trip, but I think we are going to stay home for a little bit before taking off again.

Shot along the snowmobile trail

Overview from the snowmobile trail

Robert and Nicole just before diving into the snow

Warming up afterwards, they loved the hot spa

In Glacier National

Break from the snowmobiling

Nicole near the lodge

Alan at the top

In Glacier National

Outside our condo, looking towards the mountains

At Whitefish Mountain Resort

Robert on thin ice

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