After settling in to our new abode for the next week, we woke up bright and early to take in the crisp subfreezing temps and the beautiful scenery that laid before us. There also happened to be a 9-hole disc golf course on the resort property, so we got in a quick round while marveling at our new surroundings. We decided to spend the day around the area before venturing into Yellowstone for the rest of the week. Our first stop was across the highway to the top of Sawtelle Mountain for some great vista views of Island Park and the neighboring cities and mountains. As we were making our way to the peak, we came across some snow and couldn’t wait to play in it like two 5-year-olds.We even had a snowball fight at the top.
We then hit a nearby cafe for a nice breakfast before heading a bit south to the Mesa Falls Scenic Byway, which we read about the night before. The 110-foot Upper Mesa Falls was simply breath-taking and the lower 85-foot falls was also very nice, though we couldn’t get as close as we did to the upper falls.
We then started going back up north where our next stop was at Harriman State Park. We hiked around there for a while and checked out the historic Railroad Ranch buildings. As we continued back towards the resort, we next visited the picturesque Big Springs Park. We truly enjoyed the hiking trails there and the charming Johnny Sack’s Cabin, even though it had closed a week earlier and we were not able to go inside.
We thought about going to Henrys Lake State Park next, but decided to head into Montana and West Yellowstone instead for dinner and to get an idea of where the Yellowstone Park entrance was. We were both game for some game meat and found a cute little restaurant called Sydney’s Mountain Bistro where I had the scrumptious elk tenderloin.