As you may remember, my two daughters and I are on a 5 and 1/2 week family road trip. We are having a great time and enjoying seeing many new states and attractions along the way. Today, I wanted to share our second week on the road with you.
I’m hoping that by sharing our trip with you, you can gain a few ideas of things to do on your next road trip. Just in case you missed it, I share our first week on the road last week, with all the fun we found from Viriginia to North Dakota. I also have posts of driving through the South and Southwest last year in part 1 and part 2 of our 2014 road trip.
We started our second week on the road by entering Montana. We also spent most of the 2nd week in Montana. Again, no visitor center. It is so disappointing how many states don’t have visitor centers with a sign for state line pictures. We found a magazine as a stand in again.
We have now hit 2,000 miles!
At one point in my life, I briefly flew as a flight attendant with Horizon Air. I flew into small cities all over the Pacific Northwest. One of the cities that I always swore I would visit again, was Kalispell, Montana.
Last year when my daughters said they wanted our road trip this year to be to the Northwest, I knew we had to stop in Montana for a bit of time on our trip.
I ended up having a very hard time finding a place to stay in Kalispell that fit my budget. We ended up staying in Whitefish, Montana. We are so glad we did. We really enjoyed Whitefish.
We stayed at the Stillwater Mountain Lodge. We were the only people at the lodge during our visit and therefore the only people on the property…with no cell signal. That was a little unnerving for this city girl, but our time there was fantastic!
Right near the lodge (within walking distance), is the Whitefish Trail in the Stillwater State Forest. There are plenty of trails for hiking, which we enjoyed a few of the days we were there.
About 20-30 minutes from our lodge was the Whitefish Mountain Resort. There is SO much to do at this ski resort in the summer! Seriously, if you had the time and the money (because a lot of the activities are quite pricey IMO), you could spend a whole week right here.
We had fun riding the Alpine slide! I managed to take some video while sliding down.
Mountain Life Photography is right there at the end of the slide to get some great pictures!
We all had fun!
After the Alpine Slide, we rode the chair lift up to the top of the mountain. There are views for miles and miles and great hiking at the top. Which you may have seen in my Instagram feed. My daughters and I went on quite the hike! My Fitbit (affiliate link) said we did 73 flights of stairs this day. They totally impressed me!
Of course, I had to try to get a few mountain top flower pictures as well. It was so pretty up at the top of the mountain. I liked hiking in a bit of a more well used path because one of my daughters was quite scared of the idea of seeing bears.
One of the owners of the lodge, told us about a lake not too far from the lodge in which we could swim and enjoy cooling off. I’m not so super fond of the idea of swimming in a lake, but my girls just had too…so
On a “warm” 65 degree partly cloudy day, in they went. We were literally the only people. It was kind of neat and kind of weird to this city girl. 🙂
Sadly, our time in Montana came to a close all too quickly. I will add that if you visit Whitefish, we highly recommend Second Street Pizza and Sweet Peaks Ice Cream. Both were delicious and had great employees.
Once again, Idaho disappointed with no visitor center for a state line picture. We didn’t even see a welcome to Idaho sign. The freeway was under construction, so that may have been the problem.
Not too far into Idaho, we stopped for a rest area that had this whole big interactive display about mining and the mining industry. It was a great place to stretch our legs and run around for a short bit before driving on. Unfortunately, I don’t know the name of the city that this was in and I’ve Google searched and am not certain which town it was.
Just thought you would want to see what I see for thousands of miles. 🙂 My trusty 2002 Toyota Highlander with 175,000 miles on it is doing fantastic on our trip. Thank you, Toyota!
We were SO excited to pass into Washington state! It meant we had really gone from coast to coast on this trip. Unfortunately, no visitor center again and this is the ridiculously awful picture I got of the welcome sign. Oh well…I’m proudly displaying this horrible picture because…WE DID IT!!!
If you ever spend time in Spokane, Washington, you have to visit Riverfront Park. We found it because I found this big red wagon through my Roadtrippers app. I was so dorkily excited to see this big red wagon. The handle is a slide! It was too hot to go down a metal slide the day we were there.
There are tons of things to do at the park and tons of shopping and a Starbucks all within walking distance.
The park has the fantastic bench along with other great metal sculptures and an early 1900’s carousel.
Just as we were about to leave, we noticed a gondola ride that said it went over the Spokane falls. We had to go for it.
The Spokane falls were pretty. I have a video of them in my Instagram feed if you want to hear the falls.
While we enjoyed the gondola ride, I didn’t realize you could walk down to a side view-point. It probably would have been just as nice and saved me some money.
Headed toward Tacoma, Washington, we hit 3,000 miles!
There is a Wild Horses Monument in Central Washington. My youngest daughter LOVES horses, so we had to stop. In order to really get pictures, you have to climb up that mountain. It is quite steep with lots of loose dirt. It was a very hot and sunny day. Sunscreen and a water bottle were definitely needed.
The views from the top are spectacular. That is the Columbia river in the background.
The metal horse sculptures are really unique and neat. Unfortunately, almost all of them have graffiti on them.
While at the parking lot or up on top of the mountain, take a few moments to enjoy the views of the Columbia River Gorge.
Lastly on our drive to Tacoma, we stopped to see the Snoqualmie falls. They are HUGE falls that are also used for hydro-electric energy. Such a pretty sight!
Right near the falls, I was able to pick up the next Starbucks You are Here mug on my journey. The Seattle mug.
The next week, we are spending in Tacoma/Seattle and then on to Portland. Can’t wait to share the fun with you!
Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram or Facebook to see more of our journey in ‘real-time.’
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Sharon Collins says
I enjoyed your trip. My hubby, 3 pugs, & I drove to Vermont, New Hampshire, & Maine. Next year will be the same. I noticed many places now have welcome stations in the towns to get you into town. It was a big thing in PA even 10 years ago. Motels, too. Though ME,was terrible but our daughter from our last Army tour knows the area well so it helped she was there. I would love a trip to stop, take pictures, & enjoy. Maybe next year. No 13 hour driving days! Plus no staying in Harrisburg/Hershey.
KC Coake says
Thank you! Sounds like you need to plan a fun trip to stop, take pictures and enjoy the drive. 13 hour driving days stink! We try our best to stop and smell the roses while we are on the road. It makes it more fun! Best of wishes to you on your next road trip!