*notcot in travel , 00:36

Inspiration: LA to Yellowstone to Glacier- 09.09.14

precanada0.jpg Almost a week into our adventure to go explore Alberta, Canada… and first time curled up in a hotel (now in Calgary!) to catch up and give you a proper update. As the last post told you, Bucky, Shawn, and I are adventuring north in the NOTFZJ80. A mix of remote roof top tent camping and hotels as we work our way around. Here’s the update from LA blowing through Las Vegas and Salt Lake City heading up into Yellowstone, around Montana, into Glacier as we got ready to cross the border to Canada into Waterton as our first Alberta stop. Here’s a peek at everything from what we saw on the road to the magical sites in national parks to roadside bison, sunsets, pasties (and cocktail pasties!), google map detours that turn into off road courses to get around highway closures, dozens of miles of dirt roads to get to the perfect camp spot by a lake, unexpected little towns, ridiculously good huckleberry pancakes and pie, and one of the most epic drives i have yet to experience (Going-to-the-sun Road!)… ready to get the quick version of the last few days? To the next page!

Getting into Cedar City, UT at sunset… precanada1.jpg

Centro Pizzeria - now our second time stopping here, it’s still delicious! And the patio with one table is a perfect dog-friendly spot to imbibe and relax… as Bucky stands guard. precanada2.jpg

Driving up to Yellowstone… precanada3.jpg

These snow/trail machines looked fun! precanada3a.jpg

Little NOTFZJ80, big sky… Montana! precanada4.jpg

Yellowstone’s thermal pools bubbling away at sunset… precanada5-yell.jpg

While I only got a teaser of what Yellowstone has to offer - sunset was stunning! precanada6-yell.jpg

And roadside bison make it even more incredible… though Bucky didn’t seem to be a fan. They brought out a low grumble from him. precanada7-yell.jpg

Cruising through Yellowstone… precanada8-yell.jpg

Another roadside bison at dusk… precanada8a-yell.jpg

… who then decided to cross the road right in front of us! precanada9-yell.jpg

Most of the drive, Bucky was like this. Fixated. Fascinated. Sniffing away. Or curled up asleep. precanada10-yell.jpg

When in Butte, Montana - we had to go try Joe’s Pasty Shop! Good stuff… since 1947! And if you’re interested, the owner is ready to retire and has a sign up wanting to sell the business! precanada11-butt.jpg

… the best part? They even make COCKTAIL PASTIES! Somewhere between a char siu bao, a pigs in a blanket, and a mini cream puff. precanada12-butt.jpg

Downtown Butte views… Headframe Spirits Distillery, which i wish we had time to pop into - next time!… Bucky’s ears flapping in the wind… and finally getting some MUD on the NOTFZJ80. precanada13-butt.jpg

When we were done exploring Butte, we tried to get back on the highway but a chunk of it was closed. A little exploring and following google maps lead us to quite the off road detour! precanada14-butt.jpg

How could i not take a picture of this enormous steer? precanada15-glac.jpg

Heading into Glacier - Shawn picked out a remote camp site out at Bowman Lake… it lead us in an unmanned entrance and down 25 miles of dirt/gravel road. As we read up on things - you can see how Bucky felt about “Bear Country”. precanada16-glac.jpg

Crossing a cute bridge… precanada16a-glac.jpg

Part way in the dirt roads you come across the little community of Polebridge! (Where DUST is a four letter road - so slow it on down.) precanada17-glac.jpg

Finally we got to the amazing camp site at Bowman Lake - and wow. precanada18-glac.jpg

Bucky couldn’t resist that Glacier water… precanada18a-glac.jpg

Sunset was otherworldly… precanada19-glac.jpg

precanada20-glac.jpg CLICK TO VIEW LARGER!

Here’s our camp setup in the woods! precanada21-glac.jpg

Cruising around we found cows popping out on the highway… popped into Carolyn’s Cafe in Hungry Horse, MT - her huckleberry pancakes and biscuits and gravy were delicious… also grab a piece of huckleberry pie! We took our pie and headed to the famous Going-To-The-Sun Road. precanada22-glac.jpg

Going-To-The-Sun Road. How did i not drive this sooner? It’s such an incredible drive… can only imagine how it must feel top down in a convertible on a lovely day. precanada23-glac.jpg

Lots of “weeping walls” and waterfalls… precanada24-glac.jpg

I told you - we brought the pie on the drive and stopped for a treat with the views! precanada25-glac.jpg

The northern top of Glacier National Park flows into Waterton National Park on the Canadian side where we were headed next. precanada26-glac.jpg

Pit stop before crossing the border landed us in a motel in Browning, MT… where we found this funky espresso teepee! precanada27-glac.jpg

So that’s the first part… on the Canada next!

p.s. Biggest surprise/lifesaver along this route - when not camping/needing a last minute Bucky-friendly place to stay - we stayed at two La Quinta Inns & Suites and they were consistently surpassing my expectations. So kind to both weary travelers and our dog - and the accommodations were perfect between camping when in smaller towns/cities. For Bucky’s first hotel experiences, he seemed into it - everything from getting to jump between two queen beds and getting his own queen bed to seeing how a big ice machine in action… and of course the front desk treats. laquinta.jpg

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