Monday, August 7, 2017

Adventures With Arnold: Day 5-6

Day 5:
Mercifully, this day was more laid back than the others.  In the morning, we gathered Arnold and stuffed him back into the car.  He was expecting another huge hike like yesterday, but today we just went to the river.  There is a lovely river running into Lake McDonald, and large sections of it are wide and shallow.  Like, 6-12 inches deep, casually running over vibrant and unique rocks.  This appeared to be a great place for Arnold and the kiddos to play.  We carefully make our way to a rock island in the middle of the river and camped out a while.

After a length of time splashing in the water, we left our island and drove around a bit to our next hike.  It was a hike suggested on the "what do to with your small children in Glacier" sites, and was a tame nature walk through some lovely woods.  We walked though some places that had been affected by the wildfire, and also ended up on the shores of Lake McDonald again to throw rocks. Arnold was glad it wasn't a strenuous walk. He was getting little tired of being unceremoniously toted all over creation, often by one leg. 

playing "Pooh Sticks"

Day 6:
We loaded up and were out the door by 7:30am.  Arnold was impressed.  I was too, actually. We retraced the 10 hour drive home, stopping for a huckleberry milkshake, and made it in time for our martial arts class in the evening.

Arnold's sleeping arrangements at our guest house
Arnold is trying not to panic that he is upside down
and cannot flip himself right side up,
and, his human is asleep and unable to assist.
Arnold enjoying lunch with the kiddos at a rest stop.
He even liked the carrot sticks.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Adventures With Arnold: Day 4

Arnold in a canoe

Day 4:
This morning, Arnold hopped enthusiastically back into the car with us.  We left earlier than normal because we had a canoe rental waiting for us.  For an hour and a half, we paddled around Lake McDonald. Arnold found it strange to be riding on top of the water instead of in it.  It was his first boat ride, and the kiddos' first canoe ride.  They had a healthy fear of tipping the canoe, for which Arnold was glad.  He hadn't brought his bathing suit.

After the canoe trip, Arnold took a nap on the way up to Logan Pass.  It was about an hour for him to rest, and gear up for the big hike.  One again, he didn't walk much himself, but relied on Jayce, Anya, and occasionally Philip for transportation. It was a very steep hike, with lots of stairs, and a breathtaking view at the top.  Actually, the views were breathtaking the entire way up.  The mountain goats at the top were an added bonus.

the wildflowers were amazing

Leaping over creeks like a boss

The snow was melting on her

Friday, August 4, 2017

Adventures With Arnold: Days 1-3

Hi y'all, It's been a while.  My apologies.  I've been so busy that blogging is at the utmost bottom of my list of things to do.

The last few months have taken us random parts of the hemisphere, which I would prefer not to detail for you for wake of time.  Everyone is healthy, strong, and learning new things every day.

Who's Arnold?

When I was in Brazil in May, I introduced my kiddos to Arnold, a sea turtle.  He's soft, snuggly, and very portable, despite being a water-dwelling reptile. Each day I was gone, Arnold had an adventure with the kiddos, and required special considerations which they were obligated to give.  It was a good way to stay connected with them while I was away.

Fast forward a few months, and Arnold insisted on going on vacation with us.  It seemed he enjoyed adventure with the kiddos so much, that he just couldn't stay home while the kiddos explored Glacier National Park.

Day 1, however, was very boring for the poor fellow.  He didn't realize that "adventure" meant being stuck in the car for 10 hours. He did get some good snuggles and snacks, and even got to watch "Cars" with Jayce and Anya, for which he was very grateful.

We drove straight through from Oregon to Montana, not stopping for much.  The kiddos were fantastic, with good attitudes.  It was a long, long day, even for Philip and I.  We arrived our AirBnB house at almost midnight.

Day 2:

We didn't push it in the morning.  We eventually left the house, and took a picnic lunch to a river inside Glacier.  It was nice to walk around a little, put our feet into (cold) water, and relax.  Arnold was happy to accompany, and was extra excited to see the river and the waterfalls.  He didn't understand the danger, or why we held on to him so tightly when we were close to the edge, but he stayed safe.  He was glad to be able to sit by himself on a sunny rock and enjoy the shallow part of the river for lunch, though.

 Later in the day, Arnold was VERY upset to be left behind in the car during a hike to a waterfall.  Jayce and Anya really loved that hike, and told him about it later in the day.  Somehow, Jayce and Anya neglected to mention the incline, how mama and daddy were completely out of breath, or how tired we were at the top of it all.  However, for a turtle that basically gets carried everywhere he goes, these things probably would not have been a factor.  It was a beautiful hike.  My favorite part was the colors of the rocks.  They were so incredibly vibrant.

overlook by Many Glacier

Day 3:
This was much more interesting for Arnold, since he got to hang out with the family all day.  We tried to get an early start, but sometimes getting a turtle ready in the morning is as slow as shell. Finally, we found a place to park at Avalanche Lake trailhead.  Arnold got baby-sat by a kind person outside the restrooms, so he didn't have to witness the smelly bathrooms that the humans used.  It was nice to not take him there.  He would not have enjoyed it, and would probably have gotten his shell filthy.  The human was exceptionally glad to make his acquaintance, and Arnold got extra pets.  In fact, Arnold was a conversation starter all day!  I didn't realize he was so social.

At the beginning of the trail, there was a "no pets" sign.  This was very disheartening.  However, since the sign indicated that dogs were the undesired pet, we decided to make an exception for turtles.  Especially soft, fluffy ones.

The hike lasted 4 miles total, in which Jayce and Anya took turns porting Arnold over the trail.  He took a few nose-dives, but was promptly dusted off and calmed.  The kiddos were incredible troopers.  Jayce ran almost the entire way.  He is so athletic.  Arnold enjoyed the speed, which he is otherwise unable to obtain by himself.  Anya snuggled with him during a brief nap time in the grass at the lake. The lake itself was breathtaking, and all 4 (or 5, including Arnold) of us were sorry to leave.  More adventures to share tomorrow.