As we traveled across Hwy 2 through North Dakota, Montana, Idaho and now Washington, a common sight and sound are trains transporting millions of barrels a day of crude oil from the Bakken oil fields of North Dakota and Eastern Montana. Black oil tankers, one after another, stretching as far as the eye can see. Many of the towns these trains travel through are not happy with the frequency of trains passing through which brings more noise and traffic jams but most of all concerns about the danger of a possible derailment.
We left Michigan just in time to miss the rains of early September and made it to Glacier National Park in time to enjoy a beautiful early fall snowstorm which lasted three days. We were fine with being holed up knowing that the temps would return to the 70's shortly.
While we were home this summer, my "handyman" (I used to go for "handsome" - now I go for "handy.") installed a quick release WAVE portable heater. We were thankful for the steady warmth it gave us. We had it on day and night during the below freezing weather - for just pennies an hour.
We moved up to St. Mary's Campground and set up a base camp while Dick went on a 4 day backpacking trip. I was warned of the bears frequenting the campground eating berries to help them fatten up for hibernation. I decided to take a bike ride and check out the campground. I was riding up Loop B which was closed to camping for the season. I couldn't believe my eyes when I came upon the biggest pile of bear scat I'd ever seen. I was nervous but decided I'd take my chances of being attacked because I just had to get a picture. As I rode the rest of the Loop I loudly announced "Hey Bear!" from that point on.
Of course, we had to make our yearly run to the Polebridge bakery for a bear claw. Dick is sitting on the front porch. While enjoying our coffee and pastry a young man rode up on the bicycle you see on the right in the picture. It's called a penny-farthing. We were amazed to hear he was riding around the world on this thing. Click here to read about it: PENNY-FARTHING WORLD TOUR
|A Penny-Farthing bike - I can't even imagine getting up on the seat let alone ride it!!|
He said, "$40.00". I had a dilemma - if I went back to the motorhome with no pie, Dick would not be a happy camper so I bit my tongue and paid -- And I thought Traverse City pies were expensive!?
|Kevin visited us at the campsite|
While we were camped on the east side of the park we connected with our nephew, Kevin, and his friend, Shannan, who live in Whitefish.
|Kevin Mallery and Shannan Michael|
|Nancy with Ali|
Last, but not least, we traveled on to look up a friend we hadn't seen in nearly twenty years. He and his family live in WA. near Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area where his wife, Denise, works. We met Ken when we went to South Manitou Island (Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore near our home) in around 1990. He was a park ranger there and saw us struggling to start a fire on a windy/rainy day and invited us out of the weather to use his stove. He visited us several times before moving on to other NPS positions in other states. We've stayed in touch through the years. His nickname is "Tree" which I'm sure needs no explanation.
|Our friend, Ken Bausch, with Maggie in 1991|