Thursday, May 23, 2024

Opinion: A North Fork report

Editor | April 17, 2024 2:00 AM

I went up the North Fork on Sunday so in the tradition of a good old-fashioned Larry Wilson column, I feel obligated to give a report.

First, the road is rougher than a cob just before Big Creek, the rumor is it will get treated this summer, but it also might not be until next summer. For now, expect to be going sideways every once in awhile if you don’t slow down a bit. Also, the road is already dusty, which is not a good sign.

The rest of the road was it’ usual self — plenty of potholes, but nothing too awful.

The Polebridge Mercantile is open on the weekends and there was a line to get a bear claw. Most of the folks seemed to be from somewhere else.

In Glacier Park, crowds were light as none of the roads were open yet. We saw one other family on bicycles. There were a lot of people that just seemed top be driving around.

On the wildlife front, we saw a small herd of six mule deer near Big Creek, a couple of herds of elk at the Rocky Bar O Ranch. (Is it still called that? It was when Tom owned it, but not sure if the new owners changed the name. They seem to be doing a fine job managing the place, which means they haven’t changed much of anything). 

At any rate, the elk were way back by the woods so no photos. The bluebirds are back and so are the ruby-crowned kinglets. We found a nice elk shed in Glacier and yes, we left it there. Took a few pics and may go back to the site for a few more in the future. It’s in a hidden meadow that is slowly, but surely, being encroached on by trees.

We saw a lot of elk sign in Glacier, but no elk. Just lots of whitetails. 

As far as I know, we did not pick up any ticks, though I saw a bunch of hikers going up Glacier View. I hope they check themselves for ticks afterwards, as that trail is a tick haven this time of year. The sickest I’ve ever been in my life was from a tick, so I take them very seriously.

All in all it was a beautiful day and we got 4-5 miles of hiking in and were even home in time to catch the tail end of another boring Master’s Tournament.