|Post-storm fog near Beartooth Pass Montana|
This was a very different trip.
It’s a long way from Arizona to Montana. There were lessons learned on this 11 day, 3000-mile epic journey, not the least of which was that driving 6 hours each day is not ideal. Next time, we’ll slow down by laying over in some camps for second nights and doing some shorter driving days. Photographers among my readers will recognize this paragraph as an excuse for the relative paucity of images coming out of this undertaking. No matter, we had fun.
And there was fishing.
Finding a dispersed (outside a campground) camping site on the fly can be an adventure (read: pain in the butt), but we had expert advice from locals and photographer friends which led us to some of the best sites like this one, vaguely captioned to protect vulnerable terrain.
|Sunrise on and reflection of Mount Bachelor, Idaho|
The low point (perhaps some of you voyeurs want to know) was a camp spot without shade, which added insult to injury with hordes of insects not deterred by DEET. The high temperature inside the van (my only refuge) was 97F. I grumped. This was sunrise the next day though, so perhaps it was worthwhile.
|Detail of a hike near Red Lodge Montana|
Our northernmost spot was driveway camping at the home of friends in Red Lodge, Montana, a relatively unspoiled mountain town (something like Crested Butte Colorado used to be). We showered, did laundry, had leisurely meals and hikes and shopped the historic Main Street, where there may have been a thrift store, ice cream, AND a bakery.
As we worked our way home, and just before we re-entered familiar territory in Utah’s Uinta Mountains, we discovered the East Fork of Bear River. We didn’t have time to linger, so we vowed to return. Unfinished business.
To ground ourselves, we spent the last night in the very familiar North Kaibab Forest. We chose a great place to watch storms pass which also has a phone signal (our first this trip, not counting Red Lodge) for a Zoom meeting. We’d no sooner pulled into this familiar spot than the rainbows started.