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GNP - Apgar to Kintla Hitchhiking

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GNP - Apgar to Kintla Hitchhiking

Postby peakhugger » Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:36 am

My wife and I are taking a backpacking/climbing trip through Glacier National Park in mid-August (12-20) and have lost our shuttle ride from Apgar to Kintla on the west side of the park. We're now thinking about hitchhiking or biking this route to connect our loop.

Anyone have any experience hitchhiking through Polebridge? I wonder if the road will be too quiet, even on a weekend in August, to catch a ride all the way to Kintla Lake. Any advice or thoughts for us to keep in mind (aside from the usual cautionary hitchhiking tales)?

Thanks,

ph
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Postby lcarreau » Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:58 am

"Well I'm nobody's slave, I'm nobody's master,
Time is mine, morning, night and afternoon.
And you hitch-hiking woman, when you see me coming,
Jump on my back and let your hair come tumbling down ..."

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Postby dskoon » Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:42 pm

Being a former hitchhiker, I always think optimistically about getting a ride.
My son and I hitched from Many Glacier area, back to our car at Logan Pass. Interesting rides; reminded me of my old days of hitching.
Anyway, we did drive up to Bowman lake, near Kintla, and so we saw a bit of the road you're curious about. I'd say you will get a ride, eventually. We did see a surprising amount of people on the trail around Bowman, as well as cars on the road. But, you might have to wait a little while. You should have good luck though, as many of the cars on the road are being driven by backpackers and campers who are more apt to pick up fellow hikers. I'd say go for it, but make sure you take a book with you for the potential slow times. Also, don't forget to make a stop at the Polebridge Mercantile and sample their baked goods. :wink:
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Postby peakhugger » Thu Jul 22, 2010 5:03 pm

thanks, dskoon.

I have a fairly positive attitude and have successfully hitched to/from trailheads before, but mostly along busy roads. My wife is the one I have to convince (she'll probably stay behind at Apgar). I was mostly worried about minimal traffic up a dead end road beyond Polebridge, but I think you're right, the traffic that way should be backpackers or campers who may be more understanding of our situation, so it may only take a few to catch a ride.

I was at the Mercantile 15 years ago but I must have missed the baked goodies. Will have to check them out this time!
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Postby Chewy » Thu Jul 22, 2010 5:18 pm

Dskoon- Now why did you have to go and mention the mercantile? Now I'm gonna have to drive up there and get myself a delicious Bear Claw and a great cup of coffee. :lol:


Peakbagger- You shouldn't have much problems with catching a ride at that time of year. Send me a reminder PM before you get here. If I'm available I'd be happy to give you a ride up there. Sorry I can't commit at this time as I have an unpredictable work schedule.

A warning about riding a bike on that road. It can get very, very dusty with fast, inattentive drivers.

I hope you have a great trip, you'll be passing through some of the most beautiful terrain I've ever seen.

Kelly

Edit- forgot to add this-

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Postby peakhugger » Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:38 am

Chewy wrote:Peakbagger- You shouldn't have much problems with catching a ride at that time of year. Send me a reminder PM before you get here. If I'm available I'd be happy to give you a ride up there. Sorry I can't commit at this time as I have an unpredictable work schedule.

A warning about riding a bike on that road. It can get very, very dusty with fast, inattentive drivers.

I hope you have a great trip, you'll be passing through some of the most beautiful terrain I've ever seen.


Kelly-

Thanks for the advice and heads up. Good to hear there's plenty of traffic that way - as I'd hoped for. Interesting to hear about the cycling warning, though I shouldn't be surprised. I biked in the Polebridge area years ago (to Bowman), but wasn't up there on a weekend. I guess it gets busy.

Also, those Bear Claws look ridiculously appetizing, can't wait to grab one...

My wife and I are looking forward to 'packing and climbing in this amazing corner of the world. We haven't been through this part of the park, only GTTS, Many, Hwy 2 corridor, etc. I get the feeling we're missing out on the gem of the park. (I haven't seen a bad comment about the Hole-in-the-Wall/Boulder Pass area)

>
One last thing in case anyone's still reading: Any predictions on the skeeters in GNP in mid-August? They're running full tilt in S and SW Montana right now, especially up by treeline. They should be dying down in a week or so, excluding the Beartooths, which seem to peak later.
>

Many thanks again to all. It's good to hear from some of the locals or folks who are more familiar with the country. We don't get enough time up in GNP being from S. Montana.

-ph
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Postby peakhugger » Wed Jul 28, 2010 6:32 am

jobovey wrote:
Peakhugger: how did you and your wife fair?



Josh-

You're beating me there by a few weeks if you're on your way. I guess I should be asking you the same question in a few days!
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Postby dskoon » Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:41 pm

Did you talk the wife into joining you? She should, imo, for it's part of the adventure, and you'd get to have a beer in the place next to the Polebridge Mercantile, and then stock up on goodies in the Mercantile. Best o' luck.
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Postby peakhugger » Fri Jul 30, 2010 2:11 pm

dskoon wrote:Did you talk the wife into joining you? She should, imo, for it's part of the adventure, and you'd get to have a beer in the place next to the Polebridge Mercantile, and then stock up on goodies in the Mercantile. Best o' luck.


She's expressed interest, but still isn't sure. Do you think it's easier to hitch with two people, especially a younger couple?
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Postby peakhugger » Sat Jul 31, 2010 1:44 am

Folks,

This is the wife. We're good to go! The bear claws and beer convinced me . . . nothing like a little saturated fat and alcohol to really end the trip well. If you see us out there (hopefully not in the pouring rain, as we've done before in Canada), give us a honk or a ride. Maybe we'll have leftover chocolate from the trail to share with you. Cheers!
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Postby dskoon » Wed Aug 11, 2010 4:14 pm

Hmm, looks like you're leaving soon? And the wife has decided to join-in on the hitching part?
Good move. You'll be fine. Yes, might even be easier for two, especially a man and woman combo. You might even pull the old tactic(if you're daring enough), of hiding in the bushes while she stands out there thumbing down a ride. Then, when someone stops, he hops out and she says, "oh, would you mind if my husband comes along too?"
That's pretty old school, however, and I'm not suggesting it.
Just, hitch with your packs(?),I'm assuming, and smile, look friendly, be sincere, and you'll be fine. Think of Polebridge and the goodies awaiting.
Best o' luck! Oh, have a good hike, too. :)
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Postby peakhugger » Wed Aug 11, 2010 5:32 pm

The only downside of the man/woman combo right now:

http://helenair.com/news/article_9b7ee1 ... 03286.html


Still might try the woman hitching trick you described (I had thought of that earlier), although perhaps more casually then hiding in the bushes (just sitting nearby).

We're off tomorrow, but have decided to hitch at the end of the trip (leave the exciting part for last?) 50+ miles, 10 days, 3 peaks... nothing better

Thanks again for the advice.


P.S. The best part of the AZ fugitive story: that he's on the run with "his fiance and cousin" (not two different people, mind you)
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Postby dskoon » Wed Aug 11, 2010 6:43 pm

:lol:
Well, I was gonna add, just be careful who picks you up, (which you should be anyway-judgement), and add the part about the fugitives, etc. But, figured if your wife read that, it might be the dealbreaker for her. :lol:
But, they're probably not picking up hitchhikers anyway, given their status. . .

Anyway, have loads of fun. Sounds great.
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