The long, buggy, way to Arrow

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  • Arrow Lake trail.

  • 1

    Fishing Arrow Lake.

  • 2

    Early morning, Trout Lake.

  • 3

    Trout Lake, Glacier National Park.

  • 4

    A toung Franklinís grouse takes refuge in a lofty perch.

  • 5

    Cow and calf moose near the trail.

  • Arrow Lake trail.

  • 1

    Fishing Arrow Lake.

  • 2

    Early morning, Trout Lake.

  • 3

    Trout Lake, Glacier National Park.

  • 4

    A toung Franklinís grouse takes refuge in a lofty perch.

  • 5

    Cow and calf moose near the trail.

Rogers Lake in Glacier National Park doesnít see a lot of people and for good reason: Thereís no trail to it.

The bushwhack to the lake isnít that far, less than a half mile. But itís not a lot of fun, either. The surrounding forest is spruce and subalpine fir, with plenty of huge downed trees, brush over your head and devilís club.

In other words, itís my kind of place.

Rogers Lake also has almost no shoreline to speak of ó the brush grows right down to the water.

Still, itís a spot on the map I visit every once in awhile, primarily because it seems like one of those places that if everything in the world goes to hell, life might still persist here, and I find comfort in that.

The mosquitoes were bad, but the deer flies were worse. We ate lunch and got out of there. Our eventual destination was Arrow Lake, which is up the drainage, at the base of Heavenís Peak.

Unlike Rogers, Arrow is a pleasant place with a nice little campground, though a massive avalanche last winter came within a hundred yards or so of completely obliterating the camp.

Glacierís trail crew did a helluva lot of work to get that trail open this spring by the looks of it, as hundreds of yards of trail were buried under snow, ice and thousands of downed trees.

Perhaps more interesting is that in all the rubble and destruction, glacier lilies were growing here and there in what couldnít have been more than a half-inch of soil, if that.

Arrow is supposed to be a good fishing lake and we tried, but didnít have much success, namely because the wind was blowing a good 25 mph. Wind and Tenkara rods donít mix well.

We did manage to nab a few in the creek at dusk. Beautiful westslope cutts that we caught and released.

The next morning we caught the first rays of light at Trout Lake on the way out and then hiked back to the Inside North Fork Road.

Itís a longer (10-plus miles), far brushier and very buggy route, but you donít have to go over Howe Ridge, which might just be one of the most boring hikes in all of Glacier.

All told, we got a quick glimpse of two owls, saw a couple of moose and even a glimpse of a wolf, which was ruffling the feathers of a pair of sandhill cranes.

The cranes have a distinctive call; close your eyes and imagine dinosaurs.

Cool, huh?

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