Winter Vacation to Montana!

March 07, 2019  •  Leave a Comment

Last November my brother Matthew kept sending me awesome photos of snowfall in Montana.  Since snow just doesn't come around Virginia too much, I booked a trip a few months later.  For this trip I used a Panasonic LX10, DJI Mavic Air, and an Insta360 One X.

I have to say flying with a toddler is tough, and I pretty much constantly felt bad for people around us, but we made it through.  

Montana Travel PhotosMontana Travel PhotosPhotos from a winter vacation in montana.

Once we got to Billings we had an all day drive ahead of us.   We stopped in Bozeman to grab essentials like peanut butter and jelly, and stayed in Butte one night to break up the drive.

Montana Travel PhotosMontana Travel PhotosPhotos from a winter vacation in montana.

Just south of Flathead lake, you are given a beautiful view of the Mission Mountains near St. Ignatius. Today we only had a partial view as the clouds were staying low. We stopped for a quick photo before continuing on.

Mission MountainsMission MountainsView of Mission mountains from the highway.

About an hour south of Eureka, you really get a bunch of nice mountain views.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge. Once we made it to Eureka we went for walk around the block where my Grandmother lives.  It was below zero but Charles was a trooper! Montana Travel PhotosMontana Travel PhotosPhotos from a winter vacation in montana.

The next morning I woke up super early and went out for some full moon photography.  I bought a Panasonic Lumix LX10 just for this trip and wanted to see how it would perform.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge. Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

Below, you can see a couple rocks covered in snow and a frozen Lake Koocanusa in the distance.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

I made it to the Koocanusa Bridge well before morning twilight.  The moon and stars were still shining bright!

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

Looking back from the opposite side of the bridge now, you can see the lights of a plow truck across the lake.  Side note, I was blown away by the logging traffic out here!  Even at 4:30am it seemed that one would pass by every 20 minutes or so.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

From a about the same spot as the above photo, just looking away from the bridge, you can see some awesome fog rolling along the lake.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

Below you can see the edge of the ice on Lake Koocanusa.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

As the sun started to come up, I started to make my way back across the bridge.  Here you can see the Canadian Rockies in the distance.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

As I made it back to Eureka, I stopped to take a photo from where I was earlier.  I got a text telling my my kid was awake so I headed home to hang out!

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

Later that day, we went to the historical park in Eureka.  I took a few photos of the buildings and flew the drone for a few moments.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge. Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge. Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge. After checking out the Historical Park, we went to take a look at the bridge.  My Grandad told me to drive towards the Canadian border and see if I saw any Bighorn Sheep.  We didn't see any sheep but we did see a bunch of elk up on the hill!

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge. THEN we went back to the bridge.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

There isn't much traffic on the bridge so...

Charles isn't sure about snow and freezing temps.

The next morning before leaving for Monarch, I got up early again to see what I could see sunrise-wise.  Nothing much came of it but I'm always glad to get out.

Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge. Northwest MontanaNorthwest MontanaImages from Eureka Montana and surrounding areas in winter of 2019. Areas include Eureka, Lake Koocanusa, and the Lake Koocanusa Bridge.

After that we were off!  I must say the highway below Glacier National Park is beautiful.  But since we were in a hurry to get to my brothers cabin in Monarch, we pretty much went non-stop.  On the easter side of the Rocky Mountains, we were driving through a seemingly endless abyss of drifting snow.

But we made it!  I didn't take many photos here, cuz you know, family time.  My brothers cabin has quite a view!

After a short stay in Monarch, we headed to Lewistown where my brother lives.  The weather was pretty cold and snowy, so we went up to Judith Mountain via my brothers ATV.

Montana Travel PhotosMontana Travel PhotosPhotos from a winter vacation in montana.

The wind at the top was CRAZY and Charles kept saying 'COOOOOLD!' Montana Travel PhotosMontana Travel PhotosPhotos from a winter vacation in montana.

Once we made it back into the ATV, I used my Insta360 ONE X to take a group photo.  I am still getting to know this camera but have enjoyed it so far!

After a couple more days of hanging out with friends and family, it was time to head on out.  Hopefully someday I'll call this place home again.

Thanks for looking.

 


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