We got the tickets to Mexico and so upon returning to the US, we only had little time to see National Parks we planned to visit. In our new rental car we travelled across the states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Wyoming. Along the way we stopped in Roslyn which played the town of Cicely in Northern Exposure movie series (yet again one more icon of culture our kids missed). There is Cafe Roslyn and almost the same camel mural as seen in the movie. Only the moose which walks the main road in the opening credits was missing.
I love people-watching and the US is a great place to do this. The cowboys with their big mustaches and sideburns as if they just left a movie scene, gray-bearded bike riders, covered in leather and all the evil artifacts, amish people in their 19th century looks and all other free birds of every age and gender. Like being in a constant movie set with a little touch of “people of Walmart”.
The landscape kept changing every hour – from pine forests to small hills to vast empty spaces, fields and praires. The scale of this is incredible – what seems close on a map means a full day of driving. You just keep driving and driving and driving and there is not a single human settlement. And when you finally see one, you wonder how people could live here.
We spent 2 nights in motels along the road. Szymon, when finally released from his car-prison runs on wet grass like a young horse. Then early morning we again pack our stuff to get a campsite in Grand Teton National Park. There is a long line of cars before Jenny Lake Campground even before 8 a.m. so we keep driving north and finally settle in Signal Mountain. Our site is at the shore of Jackson Lake with a perfect view of the Tetons.
It looks like we do everything the opposite way in this trip – we stayed in 40 degrees heat while Poland was in the middle of winter and now when there is over 30 degrees in Warsaw, the stuff in your nose freezes in the morning here. There are snow-covered peaks around us and Glacier (nomen-omen) National Park just appeared on our agenda.
Again we have a bear box, moreover we got ourselves a bear spray. Actually, since I saw them with my own eyes these animals are rather BEARS than “teddy-bears” now in my vocabulary. In bear country apart from black bears there are grizzlys too. And mosse, bison, beaver, deer and elk.
We spend our days on long treks. Lakes, woods, colorful meadows. Our first bison herd spotted evening day one, elk herd on the next day. Then a crowd in front of our campground – there is a black bear mum with cubs on a hill. For a brief moment we can see the small cub before it disappears in the grass. It is probably the same one which was seen behind our tent the day before.
We also survided a thunderstorm in our tent, wondering whether we should seek shelter in the car due to the wind blowing like it could topple trees. We made it as so did the tent. Now we proceed fearless (until a bear decides to pay a visit).
The nights are cold and the water in the lake is freezing but how beautiful it is here!