How did the town earn the name "Hungry Horse? The story goes like this:
"Two husky freight horses, Tex and Jerry, working in the rugged wilderness of the Flathead River's South Fork area, wandered away from their sleigh during the severe winter of 1900-1901. After struggling for a month in the belly-deep snow, they were found almost starved and so weak that considerable care and feeding were required before they were strong enough to be led back to civilization. The name "Hungry Horse" was given to a mountain, a lake and a creek in the vicinity of where the incident occurred and later to the dam that is located a short distance downstream."
It’s a very pretty park, with lots of trees and flowers. There’s even a trail from the park down to the Flathead River’s edge. We had planned to arrive on the same day as friends, Bernice and Hoyt, but they encountered problems with their motorhome and were delayed 4 days.
Steve and Patty spent the day with us on Wednesday, showing us some of the local sights.
One of the best chair lift rides we’ve encountered, the Big Mountain Express climbs over 2000 vertical feet, and takes more than 7 minutes to ride each way. The chairs are large, enabling all four of us to ride together. The views going up were great….
…but coming back down was spectacular!
After lunch in a nearby cafe, we drove to the Hungry Horse Dam. Almost 172 feet tall, it was the fourth highest dam in the world at the time of its construction in 1953.
Steve is a square dance caller for us in Yuma during the winter, and Patty is a round dance cuer. While we were at the park, a lady named Joyce staying there expressed an interest in learning to square dance, so Steve put together a “mini introductory” dance on Thursday night in the park pavilion. The couple parked next to us, Anne and Ron Roy, had danced years ago. We didn’t have enough for a square, so after demonstrating a round dance to Joyce, Steve called to two couples.
Flathead Lake, just south of Hungry Horse is the largest natural freshwater lake west of the Mississippi. It extends almost 30 miles in length, and 16 miles wide. On Friday, Ron and I drove around the lake looking for those delicious Flathead cherries. It is at the end of the cherry season, but we finally found one last stand still open. The drive was nice, although the lake boundaries are so populated now, it’s hard to find an open spot for pictures.
Bernice and Hoyt arrived on Saturday, and another square dance couple did as well. We had another “mini dance”, this time with a full square.
On Sunday, the Odoms and we visited Glacier National Park, covered in the next posting. We left Hungry Horse on Monday morning.