UNPLUGGED. OFF THE GRID IN GLACIER NATIONAL PARK for Six Days!

Sorry this post is so long. We’ve been off the grid for almost a week.  Therefore, this post will include seven days of fun.  Actually!  Six days of fun and one most stressful day.  Read on!

Friday, Day 12, we pulled into Great Falls KOA.  This would be an overnight travel stay and our last night with WIFI, Cell Phone Coverage and Television.  At Great Falls KOA, we had a large level pull-thru gravel site.  This KOA would be a great place to stay for a few nights.  This campground has a large camp store and an ice cream counter.  They have entertainment for the adult and a great waterpark type pool for everyone to enjoy.  We didn’t ride it but they had a barrel train ride through the park in the evening.  I’ll bet the kids loved this ride.  Sort of like a hayride but in barrel cars.  Because we were just passing through, we didn’t go to see the falls that gave Great Falls its name.

These beautiful flowers were scattered on the ground all around our site.

My goal was to be on the road early.  That is not going to happen.  Again, I’m finished with my work inside getting ready for out travel day.  I don’t hear any work being done outside. I look out and Hubby is talking to a neighboring camper again.  I wait a while and then I head out to help Hubby.  Hubby looks at me and giggles. I tell him that I know he was talking again.  Every day Hubby tells the same story to a camper who wanders over to chat.  I should record Hubby’s speech for him and when someone comes over, I can push the button for the recording.  Hubby can keep working and the friendly neighbor can hear our story.  Hubby cannot multi-task. I would not take that away from Hubby.  He loves telling our story and listening to their story.  We are never in a hurry so what is a half hour giving Hubby enjoyment.  Talk away Hubby. 

Saturday, Day 13, We were on the road by 10:30.  It was a little under three hours’ drive-time to our next stop.  Of course, that always turns into four or five hours with slow traffic, pit-stops and fuel fill-ups. 

Beautiful scenery and rock formations could be seen for miles on our drive.

I’ve never seen so many windmill farms as I’ve seen out West. Hundreds and thousands of them in areas that reach for miles.

We are staying at Glacier Meadow RV Park in East Glacier.  We are in the middle of nowhere.  No TV.  No Cell Service.  No WIFI in the RV.  There is a pavilion that has a tower that enables us to get WIFI and probably cell service but most days, the signal is weak.  The pavilion is a two-minute walk from our RV. 

The owners are very nice.  We are parking our Truck in the grass.  The owner said, “no rules here”. 

It is very quiet here.  You can hear a pin drop.  And the view of the mountains is breathtaking.  Tall pine trees surround this little RV park.  The pavilion is nice.  I guess people get married here and have their reception in the pavilion.  We didn’t use the shower room, but it was very nice and clean. 

No sewer but a honey wagon or dump station is offered.  Their honey wagon is very small.  If we decided to use it, they would need several trips to empty our tanks. 

The cost is only $50 a night for our long deluxe site and the views are awesome.  Totally worth it. 

It will be nice to unplug for a few days.  When I need to work on my blog, I thought I could go over to the pavilion, but the signal is so weak that I could not upload one picture let alone several each day.  I will have to type everything using Microsoft Word and transfer it to WordPress when I get a strong WIFI signal. 

I’m glad I brought a book with me.  We have DVDs we can watch.  Sometimes we just need noise on the TV so our fur kids don’t hear other dogs barking outside.  We have a scrabble game if we get bored.  Hubby is taking a nap.  I might do the same.  It is so quiet. 

We will be on the lookout for wild animals.  I have my cameras ready.  We didn’t see any animals. 

Sunday. Day 14, Woke up early.  Looking out my window at 6:30 am Mountain time, it is quiet.  Not a soul to be seen.  There is fog on the mountain.  This campground is strange.  You can pull into your site either way. It would work great for people that are traveling and need a buddy site.  I guess you can also make some quick friends if your door opens on the same side as your neighbor’s door. 

I’m still not used to the time change.  Was up at the crack of dawn.  It rained all night last night.  It was cold. How cold?  Well, that is one thing we won’t know since we don’t have internet service. Usually, the first thing we do when we wake up is to look at the temperature and weather for the day on our phones.  When you don’t have TV, Cell Service or WIFI, you find out just how much you used these three services for.  I guess I will find out how cold it is when I walk out of the camper.  I better dress warm.

I walked over to the pavilion trying to score entry tickets for the “Going to the Sun” road.  It was a wasted trip because the internet was iffy, and I could not load the web page where the tickets could be purchased.  We can get onto the Going to the Sun Road without an entry ticket if we go before 6 am or after 5 pm. 

Today is Father’s Day. 

I was able to get a text out to my Hubby’s kids letting them know they could not call or text their father to tell him Happy Father’s Day.  I let them know that later today, we would be heading to a town close by where we could get a signal either from our cell phone or our data plan and we would call or text them when we got to the town. 

We went to Walmart in Kalispell. Since this is the only Walmart within miles and miles of Glacier, it was packed with shoppers.  Check-out lines were very long.  I bought a very cheap DVD player for the bedroom.  We have movies and we have a built-in DVR player for the TV in the living room area, but a DVR would be great in the bedroom.  I had a Civil War Journal 4 pack DVD, a three pack States DVD and a 3 pack Presidents DVD from the History Channel. Hubby can fall asleep to this. 

While I was in Walmart, Hubby waited in the truck with our fur kids. Having cell service enabled him to call his father and his kids. 

We drove by the North American RV Park and Yurt Village, the next campground we will be staying in for two nights.  I had cell service there, so I called to verify my reservation. 

Trains are everywhere out west.  Long trains with engines pulling the line of cars and engines at the rear pushing the line of cars.  We probably see 4 or 5 different sets of trains each day. 

Because we do not have internet, I’m glad I have everything in my non-internet, paper planner binder.  Everything I need pertaining to our trip planning is in a binder.  And the GPS will work here if needed. 

Without the internet, my laptop can still download pictures onto the computer from my camera. I can still type my blog on my Word document and transfer it over to WordPress when I get WIFI.  I can still get the date and time on my phone. 

Hubby will never get out of bed today.  Cold, raining, no TV. 

Monday, Day 15.  We’ve been on the road for two weeks.  The sun is shining bright this morning.  Today was one of our more stressful days.  We hang all our keys on hooks.  The golf cart keys, the scooter keys, the truck keys and the camper keys.  Hubby went to get the truck keys and they were not on the hook.  Hmmm!  Hubby has a horrible habit of leaving the keys in the truck which if he does it again after today, he will get a swift slap upside of his head. 

The previous day, when we went shopping, Hubby brought all our packages inside for me to put away.  Then he asked me to get my keys and unlock the Truck because he left the keys in the ignition, and he locked the truck door.  I opened the truck for him and outside he went.  Fast forward to today.  The keys were gone.  Maybe Hubbly got sidetracked and never went out to get the keys.  The Truck door was not locked either.  Good thing we have honest campers in the park because we had a lot of stuff worth stealing in the truck.  We looked everywhere for the keys.  We only have 400 square feet of living space.  Where could the keys be?  What if Hubby left the keys in the ignition and someone stole the keys and wanted to come back in the middle of the night to steal the truck?  That seemed ludicrous, but it was a thought that entered my mind.  If we could not find these keys, I was going to sleep in the truck.  Yes, that was my plan.  If someone stole the truck, we would be in deep shit.  Big 3500 Diesel Dually trucks weren’t at every dealership to just go and get one.  After hours of looking, we found the keys.  Hubby thought he had on his blue jeans, but he didn’t.  He had on his pajama pants.  The keys were in the pocket of his pajama pants.  I can’t shoot Hubby; he is my driver. 

We were also expecting an important package by UPS. This was stressful to me because we are in the middle of nowhere.  We were assured that UPS does deliver here and sure enough, our package did arrive around 5:30 pm.  The Park managers delivered the package to our doorstep. 

This Big Boy truck has all kind of bells and whistles.  It also has many warning messages that appear in the small screen in the dashboard behind the steering wheel.  We got a warning that we are low on coolant and another saying we needed to change the oil and fuel filter.  We needed a Chevy garage large enough to do the work on the Big Boy Truck.  In past experiences, we found that not every Chevy Dealership has a service department that can handle these big dually diesel trucks.  We needed to make phone calls to get an appointment for this work to be done.  We could fill the coolant ourselves, but we needed an appointment for an oil change and the oil and fuel filter to be changed. 

We took a ride to the Glacier General Store that is located next to where our next camp stay is.  It was a 40 minute ride, but it was necessary as we needed cell service.

I know there is a strong cell and internet service in the area of the General store.  When we got there, I went in to shop at the general store while Hubby made phone calls.  He was able to get an appointment for the truck while I purchased some pretty earrings in the store.

On the way back from the General store, we stopped at this beautiful waterfall.  We stopped so I could take some pictures.

Boy, am I glad this stress filled day is over???  You betcha!  Let’s get back to having fun. 

Tuesday, Day 16.  Another sun shining bright morning.  We don’t have sewer here.  Our black tank holds 52 gallons.  Gray tank #1 holds 52 gallons.  Gray tank #2 holds 52 gallons.  We still need to watch the water usage, so I took a quick navy shower.  Normally, when we have sewer hookups, I can take a nice long, hot shower.  Not today.

The Going to the Sun Road needs an entry ticket along with the National Park Pass.  When we were here in 2013, we didn’t need an entry ticket.  Each morning, someone is at the pavilion trying to log onto the Going to the Sun Road ticket purchase website.  Tickets are $2 each, BUT you can’t buy them anywhere but online.  And you need to be logged on at. 8 am.  Because of the weak internet signal here, it is very hard to snag a ticket.  I tried again this morning.  This time, I didn’t realize that my battery was near dead on my laptop and the minute I was able to get the screen loaded for the purchase of tickets, the screen on my laptop went black.  Dead battery. 

We did the next best thing.  We were told about a paved road with the most beautiful scenery.  It is Route 49 going to Two Medicine.  This road was a twisty hairpin turn road with no guardrail.  The speed limit was 25 miles per hour if that tells you anything.  We slowly navigated this road pulling over when permitted to take in the breathtaking views.  We would not be taking our big rig on this road. 

The tunnel height is only 12-6.  Our rig is 13-6. 

There is also a restriction for RVs to be under 21 feet long for this road.  Not thinking, I told Hubby that we can’t take this road in the Big Boy Truck.  DAH!  We are not hitched up.  Our 5th wheel is at the RV park.  Our Big Boy Truck is not over 21 feet long.  What was I thinking?  Apparently, I was not thinking. Silly me.

We entered Glacier National Park from the road leading to Two Medicine and our lifetime America the Beautiful pass got us free entry again.  This National Park pass is going to save us a lot of money before this trip is over. 

Once inside of the park, we saw a parking lot full of cars.  We didn’t know what was there, but we stopped to see.  It was the Running Eagle Falls, a most breathtaking waterfall.  It was a .3-mile hike to the waterfall, and I decided to walk it.  I knew I was getting closer to the falls with each step I took because the sound of the rushing water was getting louder and louder.  Hubby just shook his head when I returned.  He mentioned that most people going to the waterfalls had bear spray canisters hanging from their belts.  At least I had on my tennis shoes and not flip flops.  I sometimes forget that I am in Montana, bear country.

This is the path that led to the waterfalls. Most of the time, I was the only person walking this trail. So glad I didn’t come across a bear.

Hubby and the fur kids waited patiently in the Big Boy Truck for me.  If the waterfalls were closer, Hubby would have gone to see them too.  I do know for a fact that Hubby does not want to leave his Big Boy Truck unattended in these packed parking lots.  We were lucky to get an open parking spot large enough for our dually truck when we pulled in.

On our way back to our campground, there was another pull off.  We decided to stop, and I snapped a few pictures.  Welcome to Blackfeet Country.

Wednesday, Day 17.  I didn’t get a picture but the sunset last night and the sunrise this morning were stunning to say the least.  It’s strange that it is still light here at 10 pm.  At 7:30 this morning the clouds formed, and the sun went in.  It is overcast and dreary right now.  The neighboring campers are eating breakfast at their picnic table. 

The wind picked up and it is starting to rain.  We decided to stay in today.  We feel better not putting a bunch of miles on the Big Boy Truck until we get the fuel filter changed.   So, with the rain and need for maintenance, we will relax.  Hubby will take a nap. 

What is the next best thing to not having the internet when trip planning?  An Atlas, a KOA campground directory and a 50 States, 5000 ideas/things to do book.

Thursday, Day 18.  We are leaving Glacier Meadow RV Park today.  We enjoyed our stay here.  If you want to unplug from the hectic everyday life and enjoy beautiful scenery, this place Is for you.  Hubby teased me daily about me “not” being able to use the internet, but I didn’t miss it.  It was nice to unplug and enjoy the scenery.  It’s a small park, only around 60 sites.  They do not offer sewer hook-ups, so we will use the dump station when we leave.  Also, other than a few rules, such as quiet time and check out time, this is a “no rules” park.  This Park, during our stay, and in my opinion does not need rules.  It just goes to show, you don’t need a bunch of written rules for people to follow camping etiquette.  You can park on the grass here which is nice because our site just fits our rig.  Campers keep their sites very neat, and everyone is friendly.  The campground managers are delightful.  I rate this hidden gem of a park five stars.  

Our drive from Glacier Meadow RV Park to North American RV Park took almost an hour. There was construction on the road and the speed limit was 35 miles per hour which was fine with me. The normal speed limit for this road is 70 miles per hour. This road is narrow and twisty. We didn’t even drive 70 miles per hour when we drove it with just the truck

On the way, we saw many rafters.

Goodbye Glacier Meadow RV Park, Hello North American RV Park.

These pretty flowering bushes are throughout the RV park. And they are all in bloom.

Our site is gravel, level and long. We have full hook-ups. One thing I have to note about this park is it is very noisy. Dogs barking that made our dogs bark and people shooting fireworks which scared my fur kids. Things did quiet down at 10 pm which is the start of quiet hours.

We have moths.  Bunches of them.  And they are very hard to get rid of.  Where are they coming from?  They seem to congregate in the bathroom and dive bomb you while you ae sitting on the toilet.  I know I say be kind to every kind, but sorry, this is war. 

God Bless, Stay Safe, and be Kind to Every Kind (except for the army of dive-bombing moths). 

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