The Red Bus fleet consists of thirty three 17-seat (18 counting the driver) motor cars. The buses and their drivers started taking visitors on tours via Going to the Sun Road -- the only road that completely bisects the park -- since that road opened in 1933.
The buses have both gasoline and propane engines and feature canvas roofs that roll back, giving riders a clear view. They were built in the 1930s and refurbished in the early 2000's.
Grand finale of the tour: We finally saw a bear. This guy was a small black bear (actually brown in color) sitting along the side of the road, happily stripping leaves off a shrub. We also saw a mountain goat. Jim said the tour was a heck of a lot better than driving (the road has steep drop offs on one side, rock overhangs on the other and plenty of twisty curves) plus you get great stories all along the way.
|The new Apgar Visitor Center opened this spring. We got on the tour bus at the far end of this building.|
|Our Red Bus as seen from the inside before the roll back canvas roof came off. That's tour guide Norm at the left starting to raise the roof, so to speak.|
|Our tour bus group, as seen in the bus's rear view mirror. You can see me to the left taking the photo, and Jim to my left. You know it's cold when Jim has a windbreaker and a hoodie pulled up over his baseball cap.|
|Jim on tour stop.|
|Tour guide Norm is the one with the tie. Per Norm, Glacier has 23 active Glaciers but because our climate is getting warmer it's anticipated they will all disappear within ten years.|
|Norm said it had been foggy the last ten days, but it was beautiful if a little chilly.|