Friday, September 2, 2011

Washington State to South Dakota

Off again breezing through Idaho except to stop and have lunch with a classmate of Jackie's (thanks Charlotte Bouley) it was great seeing you again.  We then continued into Montana where our next stop was at a BLM area East of Butte and found a nice place to pull off in the trees for the night.  Woke up surrounded by cows but C C scared them away!

Another 160 miles to the little (very little) town of  Reed Point Montana for just another night.  Went for a drive in the afternoon and Dick had to stop and get some pictures of the area.

Far out in the country on a narrow gravel road we found nice farms and beautiful pastures and one or two very sad abandoned places.  Not shown but very funny was a street sign pointing to "Retirement" and when you turned the corner the sign read "Dead End"; we sure hope not.

If you have followed our blog you will know that we had some overheating problems in the motor home on the way back to the NW.  We thought it was fixed until we headed over Snoqualmie Pass and found that it still needed fixing. 

After leaving Reed Point we headed to IState Truck Repair in Billings on Wednesday the 24th in hopes of getting it repaired.  They checked it out and said "they might get us in on Monday".  Long story short we finally got it fixed and on the road again Thursday morning.  We spent 7 nights in their parking lot testing out our new solar (worked great) and one night in a hotel when they had the rig in the shop.  Sorry but this one is a little dark, well it was night and it cooled off from the mid 90s to the mid 60s.

We spent two evenings sitting outside with a great couple from Austria sharing stories and a little wine; thanks Petra and Tino for sharing your time with us and hope to see you again in the future.

We made the best of our time there meeting up with Rick Young and his lovely wife Laurel for a craft show in Bridger and then a wonderful dinner at their home.  Great to see old friends again.
While in Bridger we went to an area above Red Lodge where Dick's great grandfather homesteaded in 1899 and where his grandmother was born.  This is a picture of Dick standing over the rootceller that was on the ranch.

Keeping up with a day of genealogy we went into Red Lodge and had lunch at the Pollard Hotel and we think found a picture of his great grandfather tending bar in 1907.

We also spent part of two days with Dick's cousin that he has not seen in years.  They shared some old pictures and stories about the family.
We spent one afternoon visiting Pompeys Pillar National Monument.  This was another stopping place of Wm. Clark of Lewis and Clark fame and is the only visible record of their journey with his signature inscribed in the hillside.

We tried to get a picture of his signature but this is the best we could do.

As we said, on Thursday we finally got the heck out of Dodge (Billings Montana) heading for De Smet Lake near Buffalo Wyoming.  But on the way we stopped at Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument that used to be called Custers Last Stand.  Kind of a sad place to realize that about 300 people, both whites and native, died here.

Most of the graves are marked where the soldier fell and was buried except the remains of the officers were moved to another part of the country.  The natives took their dead with them and buried them.

But now there is a very well done monument to the tribes on the battlefield.

With a little research we found our next stop on the lake with very few if any people around and had a great view out of all the windows on our rig sitting on the end of a long point.

After setting up we decided to head out on another back road and saw 20 or 30 Pronghorn Antelope.  Very hard to get a good shot because as soon as they hear you, off they go.  Snuck up on this one.

We had to stop at this old abandoned home out in the middle of nowhere so Dick could get some pictures.  Some one had big hopes and dreams here and this is all that remains.  The inside was lath and plaster with most of the plaster gone and the floors and ceilings totally rotted.

Not sure why it had two front doors and one back door.

A closer look in black and white at some of the years of patching to keep the weather out.

Dick stuck his head into the house saw a critter in the attic so he very carefully went through the house and out the back in time to see a large owl looking down at him.  Just as he raised his camera the owl turned away and took off so this is the best you get of this guy.

We are now sitting in Box Elder South Dakota for the weekend and plan to head out on Monday along with the crowds heading home from the 3 day weekend.

To be continued...


Deanna said...

That is so cool about the picture of your grandfather tending bar!

Debbie said...

Wow Wow Wow! Grandfather photo find, prong horn antelope, AN OWL (!!!), Lewis and Clark's signature and wine with Austrians! You are two lucky people!!!

Guy said...

Hey Bro who body in the cousin department?? All is well here and still on the warm side. Cool at night for good sleeping. going to
Beebe the 16th or so.
be good the OM