Rogers Meadow in Glacier National Park is a seldom visited meadow where Camas Creek slows to a meandering crawl. After noticing that the Inside North Fork Road was open to Camas Creek and the sun was shining, we decided to make Christensen Meadow and Rogers Meadow our destination.
The Inside North Fork Road is a pretty rough, one lane road. Once the main thoroughfare along the western edge of Glacier National Park, the road finds itself with a vast quantities of potholes and a few creeks that scar it beyond acceptable use. Because of the latter, the road remains closed for much of the season. I was looking at the road status heading into the weekend and noticed that it was open to Camas Creek. When the weekend, and a favorable forecast arrived, Kristen and I decided to head out to Rogers Meadow.
After a 6+ mile, bumpy ride along the Inside North Fork Road, we stepped out into the older stand of trees at the trailhead. This fall has been an exceptional one for mushrooms and we found some purple ones to be particularly notable. Beyond the trees and the ‘shrooms, we broke out into the wide Christensen Meadow. This area is ripe for elk, bear, and wolves, all of which live here, but we only saw scat. The backside of Heavens Peak and down the ridgeline to Mt. Stanton are fantastic as well as a few other peaks including Mt. Brown and Mt. Jackson.
The other pleasure of hiking in the North Fork is its rich pioneer legacy. We came across some old tractor wheels and an old rusty cookstove. I always admire those first folks coming out west and can’t even imagine the First Nations finding ways to live among the foot of these hills.
From there, we dipped in and out of the trees until we came to Rogers Meadow. On my first trip through here, I saw an otter. I was hoping for the same and briefly got overly excited as a beaver snuck by us along the snaking creek. Upstream and downstream from this particular meadow, the creek is like many others in Glacier; quickly bubbling over rocks. Through this section, however, it lazily wanders through the willows. We stopped for lunch, then continued on a little ways, spooking a couple of frogs in a feeder spring.
We turned around and came across some fun birds such as an American Three-toed Woodpecker on the way out. While not a terribly exciting day, it was a thoroughly pleasant fall day with wonder in all of the smaller details.