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Surrounded by millions of areas of forests, the village of Bigfork is sheltered in a bay where the Swan River enters Flathead Lake.


Bigfork — The Carmel of the Flathead Valley

Bigfork is perfection. With its flower boxes, art galleries, small cafes and unique shops, it has a picture postcard allure. With all this charm, it’s easy to see why it was chosen as "One of the 50 Great Towns of the West". Living among all this beauty ain’t cheap … a quick peek at the realty ads indicate that homes go for one to two million dollars.

The interior of the lodge has a well honed rustic elegance …  the stone fireplace invites one to curl up with a book in one of the comfortable chairs.

At the edge of the lake is one of America’s premier dude ranches … Averill Flathead Lake Lodge. As we snooped around, we felt we had slipped into the secret world of the rich and famous (rates are $2,653 per week per person). The sweeping lawns behind the lodge led us to a marina where we watched guests board J.P. Morgan’s Americas Cup prototype, the 1929 Q Class sailing sloop Questa, for a lake cruise.

Next visit we plan to board the Questa for what is billed as the "sail of a lifetime".


As we were leaving Bigfork, Danny slammed on the brakes when he spotted a sign for the Flathead V8 Ford Collection.

A beautifully restored 1935 Ford Cabriolet. This model sold new for $625 and was the last year of the wire wheels.

It was here that Danny died and ascended into truck heaven.

This is a '52 Ford Crestliner Sunliner ... Danny owned an identical model (but a '53) when he was in High School. Sadly, it was totaled on his way to school by some idiot woman who ran a red light. Danny was physically OK ... but still harbors deep emotional scars from the loss. Seeing this beauty didn't help.

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