Our Montana Vacation … Where the Water is COLD (Part 4)

Monday August 15, 2011

I blogged about our Montana Vacation as a series; don't miss parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6!

The cousins live by Flathead Lake and the lake is a huge attraction in terms of fun things to do.   A lot of the recreational fun revolves around lake/water activities.

Volunteer Park

We made a couple of visits to  Volunteer Park, which is a beautiful waterfront park on the lake with free swimming.  The park looked brand new, and when I searched online, I learned it was donated land and only completed last year.

This sign was posted at the park and rules #1 and #20 cracked me up.


#1 DAY USE ONLY.   Park hours are from 7am to 10pm.

10pm is still considered daylight hours in Montana because it stays light for so long!


Words many a hooligan ought to live by 🙂

When we arrived, the cousins, of course, headed straight for the dock and dove right in.   Wendy excitedly joined them.



Only then did she learn Montana’s dirty little secret.   The water is FREEZING.


She bravely swam out to the swim platform, but then had a real conundrum — how would she get back?  The thought of re-entering the frigid water was unbearable to her.


Eventually, with help from cousin E. and her inner tube, Wendy made it back to dry land.  Like a lizard, she found a rock to warm herself up on.


In addition to the waterfront area, the park also has nice open space with soft grass.   Mike immediately saw its Crossfit potential.

It started with handstand practice.


Then he convinced the cousins and their young friends to engage in a WOD.


They were gung-ho (and quite amusing to spectators).


After a couple of rounds, they became less gung-ho.


Not everyone completed the workout, but they all had fun (until it hurt to move).

The park’s lush green grass was also perfect for setting up a slackline.   We bought this for the cousins last Christmas and everyone had fun trying to walk on it.


None of us have attained expert status yet.

The park is a wonderful asset to the community, and aside from the freezing water, a great place to play!


One of our other water adventures was to go tubing with friends on the Swan River.   Tubing is a do it yourself kind of adventure in these parts.   We coordinated with friends who owned tubes and set up a shuttle between our entry and exit points.

We hopped in our tubes, picked up our feet, and away we went!


Wendy thought it was great fun, at first.   Then the water got too cold for her.


The water moved pretty quickly and our group spread out pretty fast.   There were several stretches of water where it was more bumpy then this (the camera was stashed at those spots) and I was concerned about my young children.  I tried to stay close to Wendy, while I fretted how Mike was managing with both Adam and Sam.

Eventually, we all caught back up to each other and the river got wider, making for a more relaxing experience.


Towards the end of our float, there was a spot to pull over and hang out.   Not much in the way of a beach, but a great spot for jumping.


It was also a great spot  for mud fights.


Uncle Brad overshot our muddy oasis, so he just pulled up and hung out in the weeds to wait for us.


Eventually we all made it safely to our take out spot.  Phew!  No disasters, even some smiles.


We munched on snacks and hung out while waiting for our drivers to shuttle back with the rest of the cars.


It was another fun Montana adventure!

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