After a seemingly sufficient number of yawns and roll over attempts to sneak one by that darn alarm clock, we crawled into the front seats of the White Rascal and bid farewell to our “campsite” in the Many Glacier Lodge parking lot where we spent the night. Our planned hike for the day started in Waterton Lakes, the Canadian section of the park. Woohoo! Canada or bust! Let the border hopping begin!
Our first official international border crossing went off without a hitch…and with almost no excitement. Until…Ding! Ding! Ding! Lucky us! We were selected for a random search! Like a good boy and girl, we did exactly as we were told. We hoped out of the van, emptied our pockets on the table, and answered all of the border patrol officer’s questions. After learning that we were from Boulder, previously worked in the outdoor industry and were traveling full time for the time being, the officer had a hard time believing our answer to his next question…like a really hard time.
Officer: Okay, when was the last time you did illegal drugs?
Us: Uh, never.
Officer: You mean to tell me that you are from Colorado, mountain men type people, are living in a van…and that you have NEVER done illegal drugs?
Us: Uh, yes.
Officer: Just want to make sure that I am being clear. I don’t care if you did drugs this morning. All I care about is that you are honest. If we go into that van and find any evidence of lies that is when the real fun begins. We will take off car doors, strip search you, everything. So, last chance guys. You still sticking with your answer?
Us: Ummm, yes.
Following our investigation, they started picking their way through the White Rascal only to find our foul dirty laundry and cell phone pictures of books I found at the bookstore and wanted to remember to track down at the library. Not long after that we were determined to be clean, albeit dorky. Whew!
We made it to the trailhead, packed our daypacks and ventured out with hopes of making it to Goat Haunt without the cloudy skies spitting on us. Our hopes were quickly dashed as the clouds split open about one mile into our 16-mile hike. That 16-miler soon turned into a 7-miler. We made it to the US-Canadian border and decided that we could find better ways to spend our day than by hiking in a downpour when we didn’t have to. We snarfed our PB&J’s and turned back towards the car. (Side note: There really is a clear cut line separating the two countries! The border is marked by a line cleared straight through the trees. Very cool to see!)
We stayed in Canada just long enough to dry off again and then crossed back into the US for an exciting evening punctuated with chores like showers and laundry. (Judging from the look on the border patrol officer’s face when he opened our rank laundry bag…it was time.) But first…
CHEESEBURGERS! We were on a mission to get ourselves a delicious, juicy cheeseburger. We scoped out one possible cheeseburger haven, but they were out of fries. (No good.) The second place we stopped at did not sell burgers at all. (Borderline sin in Montana.) As the age old adage goes, third time was a charm as we stumbled into a restaurant named Two Sisters. This joint was decorated in a colorful array of bumper stickers, license plates, string lights, plastic pink flamingos, and a lone Dora the Explorer folding kid’s camping chair hanging from the ceiling. Translation: It was AWESOME! The awesome-ness factor shot off the charts when we sunk our teeth into our burgers. Deeeeelish! If you are ever “near Babb, Montana” (as they describe their location) stop in an give Big John a hello. We promise it will be worth your while. There is definitely a reason the Food Network beat us to the punch here. Yum! (Pretty sure the food was as good as we remember and was not just a result of a few weeks of eating too much “camp food” [read quick to cook and easy to clean up] and a hundred or so miles of walking thus far. For now I suppose that will remain an unanswered mystery though.)
Tomorrow we hit the dusty trail yet again. Or well, the smooth asphalt really. See you again soon Canada! Onward to Vancouver Island!
A couple more shots from the day: