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Running Eagle Falls Nature Trail
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mini location map2021-08-08
31 by photographer avatartibber
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Running Eagle Falls Nature TrailNorth Central, MT
North Central, MT
Hiking avatar Aug 08 2021
tibber
Hiking0.71 Miles 128 AEG
Hiking0.71 Miles      51 Mns   0.95 mph
128 ft AEG      6 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
This was our other choice to hike in light of NOT being on our Gunsight Lake backpack and hiking up to Jackson Glacier and/or Gunsight Pass. It had rained most of the nite so we were grateful to have our small room at St Mary Lodge. It was still raining off and on in the AM but we thot we would give the Two Medicine Valley a look-see; even if we just hung out at the Lodge there (a store now). When we started our drive, this didn't look good either as our visibility was extremely limited but we continued on in spite of driving in clouds off and on.

As we got above Lower Two Medicine Lake, there seemed to be an opening and only low clouds giving us hope we would get to do some hiking around Two Medicine Lake. We got to the parking area and were able to find a spot. We had a nice lunch at the store including a great tomato soup and we split a sandwich.

The weather was foreboding so we decided to stick close to the lake area. We headed toward Pray Lake and walked around for .75 miles according to my watch. The clouds stayed low but I was able to get some pictures of the flora and a couple waterfalls were visible. There were some trees that had thick layers of moss on their branches that were showing very brightly in this light.

On our way out of the area, we decided to stop and see if Ranger Pat Hagen was about so we stopped at the Ranger Station. (I had done two hikes with him in 2013 and 2014 so it was a bit ago; oh and Wendy and I saw him in 2018 coming back from Upper Two Medicine Lake) He was there and came out to meet us. He remembered Tina but not me :( . Nonetheless, we had a nice conversation before others started coming up and asking questions so we left.

There were only a couple parking spots left at the Running Eagle/Trick Falls hike TH. The main entrance was closed off for some reason so you had to go a little past there to get into the hiking area. We got to the Falls fairly quickly. Only the lower Falls was flowing. On the way back we decided to stay close to the River which was a good decision :) as we were rewarded with lots of late blooming flowers and watching a group of American Dippers; apparently training the younger ones to hop the river (according to a bird watcher we encountered). They are noisy but I did get some good video of them as they moved up the river.

Temp was 51.7 degrees and 94% humidity with rain shower (we didn't get any though) finishing at 2:23PM (not sure where google was getting the weather from but it would have been St Mary or Browning.)

We were lucky to have good weather for both of those little hikes. The sky had lots of puffy clouds as we made our drive back to St Mary so we got to see the prairie and the lake. However, about an hour later the rain started coming and going. We checked into our room at Red Eagle Motel (nice place but stay upstairs as the walls and floors are thin).

Next up: Cattle Baron Supper Club, we hoped... as they had a water issue in Babb and we weren't sure if it would be resolved but according to their FB page, it was a go. However, when we got there, they weren't open yet as they were still waiting for the water pressure to come up. So we waited in the car for awhile and eventually got in line to go in once we got the thumbs up from one of the employees.

While waiting in line for about 20 minutes I talked to a Blackfeet about how to pronounce Piegan among other things including how covid had effected the reservation. She was a teacher and her husband who normally does construction was doing horse-work for a guiding company. They had a reservation for 11 including her parents, children and a cousin. She told me what to order, Bob's Specialty, and fortunately, I got my order in before their group ordered :lol: . The food was superb as always. I don't know what they cook those steaks on or in but the flavor is awesome.


Video: [ youtube video ] drive to Two Medicine and hike around Two Medicine area
Video: [ youtube video ] includes drive Running Eagle hike and drive from Two Medicine Valley
Fauna
Fauna
American Dipper
Named place
Named place
Lower Two Medicine Lake Pray Lake
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
_____________________
For me, sometimes it's just as much about the journey as the destination.
Oh, and once in awhile, don't forget to look back at the trail you've traveled.
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