MANY GLACIER – All it was, was a picture of a snowman. Like all of your best-dressed snowmen, he sported a black hat, red scarf and a carrot for a nose.
But given that the snowman was built nearly two weeks before summer technically ends, it – and about a dozen other photographs of snow-covered scenes from Glacier National Park – were hot topics on social media Thursday.
“OMG is that a #&$@ng snowman!!!” April Odland of St. Cloud, Minnesota, posted on Facebook.
“What the hell is going on in Montana???” asked Allyson Dupre, a former Montana resident now living in Rhode Island.
“It seems incongruous to see the cute snowman in front of window boxes filled with blooming flowers,” wrote Kathryn Way – who went on to wonder if the flowers were fake.
Reactions ranged from “Awesome!” to “Yikes!” Multiple pictures from the east side of the park posted to Facebook and Instagram by Glacier National Park were shared thousands of times, and drew tens of thousands of “likes” from around the world.
Some people were caught off guard by the reminder of winter’s approach – especially since it’s not yet even autumn. Fall officially starts Sept. 23.
“Ooooo nnoooo … beautiful but not yet,” said Julie Benscoter Hayes of Branson, Missouri.
Misty Morrow was more direct. “HELL no!!!!” she posted.
Many others carried a “wish I was there” theme, such as Laura White of Seeley Lake, who wrote, “Every single day of the year in Glacier is heavenly.”
Decided Astrid Laure Munier of Coloiers, France, “Vraiment tres beau, magnifique!!!”
The snowman pictured was made by two employees at Many Glacier Hotel, Julie of Indiana and Larry of California.
Location manager Helen Roberts declined to give their last names, but said the snowman drawing so much attention on Facebook was one of at least three built near the grand old hotel located on the shores of Swiftcurrent Lake after a snowstorm Tuesday and Wednesday.
It wasn’t a ton of snow – looked like maybe an inch, at the most, had accumulated in most of the pictures – but it was enough to turn the green late-summer scenery white.
You have free articles remaining.
Thursday morning brought the brightest of blue skies – and still-cold temperatures that let the snow be – that made the whole place “absolutely gorgeous,” Roberts said.
It was 28 degrees when she arrived at work Thursday morning, she said, and she saw at least three snowmen before she entered the hotel.
“There may have been more, I don’t know,” Roberts said. “I didn’t walk the entire property – it was too cold!”
The snowman was missing one key item of clothing, decided one Facebook poster.
“The snowman needs lederhosen,” wrote Joel Murphy, just like Many Glacier’s bellhops wear.
Roberts, who has worked at Many Glacier for eight years, said what’s most unusual for this time of year is not that it snowed, but that the snow stuck on the ground long enough for snowmen to be built.
“It’s Montana,” she said, shrugging off the fact that it snowed a week after Labor Day. “But usually when the snow comes in, it doesn’t last.”
Many Glacier Hotel is still packed with guests, Roberts said – all 213 rooms are filled – and the lobby filled with people from the nearby campground hoping to warm themselves around the fireplace as well as the weather turned wintery.
Many guests were surprised by the snowfall, and most seemed tickled to see it, Roberts said.
“It was beautiful coming down,” she said, “and now that the sky is blue everybody’s out looking at it. It’s absolutely gorgeous.”
Those whose only contact with the snow was through social media were left to ooh and ahh, or shake their heads.
One who commented on an Instagram photo showing snow on the sign at the park entrance at Two Medicine was ready to fast-forward through the next three seasons.
“Can you believe this?” he asked. “Can’t wait until summer 2015.”
And we’re not even done with the summer of 2014.