#21: Staying in a Bed & Breakfast

Posted by Megan on October 7th, 2011

Our B&B offered comfortable accommodations, delicious food and this view.


Forgive me blogworld for  I have sinned. It has been five weeks since my last blog entry. I decided to take a little hiatus at the halfway point, but the longer I stay away – the more I’ll have to cram once December rolls around. I’ve had no shortage of fun adventures over the last few months, I just have had very little time to write. My husband I took the longest road trip of my life together and didn’t fight once. (well a baby fight broke out over my hoarding of the gluten-free cookies. A pretty selfish move since I’m the one with a perfectly normal digestive system.)  The trip allowed us to experience some fun new things; like staying in a Bed and Breakfast.

Nothing is better than having an at-home mom. Remember when you were growing up and someone made your dinner for you, and someone helped you with your (home) work and said things like “you’re awesome at life” and “man you’re rocking that hair scrunchie!” Those were the days. If you know my mom Joan, you know that she is super rad. She let me eat poptarts and sleep until noon.

 Being an adult is so overrated. You have to cook and clean and go to work. I really preferred the days when my biggest responsibility was brushing my teeth. But – ALAS! I’ve found two major loop holes. Two ways to absolve yourself of all adult responsibilities and resume the worry-free teenage lifestyle:

1)       Move back in with your parents
2)       Go on vacation and stay in a Bed and Breakfast

Don’t get me wrong – the allure of resuming a life of precooked meals and allowance money was compelling but unfortunately my husband isn’t keen on moving to rura lMinnesotajust to procure free processed food. The second choice seemed like a far more feasible option, so when Brad and I embarked on vacation toWaterton Lakes National Park– we took the opportunity to rent a mom.

Waterton Lakes National Park is situated just across the US border in Alberta, Canada. It is essentially an extension of Glacier National Park in Montana. Brad and I have visited once before and fell in love. During our last trip toWaterton, we stayed in a very expensive historic hotel. While the view and the historic aspect of the hotel were great – the price was not right for the meager accommodations provided. My husband Brad handled lining up the accommodations, so when he suggested we try a Bed and Breakfast I was very skeptical.

Thanks for the view glaciers!

We arrived at Shantangle Spring Inn in late evening after spending the day hiking in Montana. I could not hide my disappointment to discover that Shantangle Spring was not located in the Waterton Lakes Park. As we got out of the car I was annoyed with Brad. Why did he have us staying in this random house in the middle of nowhere? I was dead-set on being crabby about the situation. When I’m cranky – good luck talking me out of it. I am incredibly stubborn, unreasonably biased and impossible to reason with….. usually. It took our B&B host, Heather, about 20 seconds to talk me out of my bad mood. Within a minute we were best friends, and if I was more versed in Canadian culture I probably would have hugged her by the end of the first hour.

This was the shared guest area. Brad is demonstrating being a guest.


Heather gave us a full tour of the B&B. It had four guest rooms complete with private bathrooms. There was also a separate room with a kitchenette, TV and tables for breakfast. It was decorated like a mom’s house. The decorating style was a bit mixed and included lots of outdoorsy art pieces, knick-knacks and even a miniature totem pole! She also had a plethora of books and magazines about the park and the surrounding areas including hiking guides, Native American History books, local attractions and more. The guest quarters were separated from Heather’s residency by a hallway. Heather oozed Canadian charm, and was genuinely elated to share with us hiking advice and other tips. Brad and I stayed at Shantagle Spring for five days. This is unusually long, since most people stay at Watertownfor a day or two, then move on to larger parks like Glacier or Banff.

Our room was spacious, comfortable and quiet. It featured two beds, some homey furniture and the world’s most comfortable gliding rocker. It was the perfect place to lounge after a long morning of hiking. It was so comfy I considered trying to haggle Heather into letting me take it home.

Brad unpacked for our stay.


I want to have a kid just so I can get a chair like this without shame.


Tip: If you give me a cookie, we'll be friends forever.

Each day Heather discussed the following morning’s breakfast menu with us. Since Brad is on a gluten-free diet, we brought special cereal and bread for him to eat. Clearly we vastly underestimated Heather’s caring nature. She made Brad his own special meal each morning free of gluten offenders. She even provided French rice crispies which are sans gluten.

Rice Crispies just seem fancier in French.

 She brewed each guest a pot of coffee specific to their liking. Mine was a medium roast and was spectacular. She also started each meal with a fruit plate. The meals were delicious and the conversation was even better. Each morning we met new visitors. We shared our adventures and plans and enjoyed each others company. Being surrounded by nature-loving like-minded people was a treat

Each afternoon when we returned from hiking, there were snacks laid out in the commons area. I quickly became addicted to the oatmeal raisin cookies. I ate a minimum of two per day. We also returned to a tidied up room. It was comforting to know the person who was changing our towels and making our beds was a friend.

After five lovely days at Shantangle Spring we were forced to return to reality. Even though we’ve hiked nearly every trail inWatertown, I expect we will be returning to visit Heather. The stay radiated love and comfort. It was like staying with family. Staying at a bed and breakfast was much more relaxing and comforting then a standard hotel room. It wasn’t just a room – it was an experience.

  • © 2011 Megan Steil