“On the road again…”
We woke up to a sunny day and quickly got ready to take off. It was about 8:30 . Then the fog rolled in again. Thankfully, when we crossed into Montana the sun came out and it was beautiful for the rest of the day. Coincidentally, our route follows the Lewis and Clark expedition today.
Our first stop was at Little Big Horn. We saw where Custer made his last stand and there was lots of information about Sitting Bull too. It was kind of surprising to us that Custer and his men had such a hard time shooting the Indians since they were on top of the hill.
Montana is gorgeous and Yellowstone National Park is even more amazing. The admission was $25, but well worth it. At this time of year, there are only 2 entrances that are open and only 1 road that you can drive on. The Park is the size of Delaware and Rhode Island added together. It also crosses into Wyoming. So, we could only see a small portion of it, but it was spectacular. Every turn brought a new and exciting sight.
Then we saw a sign that said we were at the 45th parallel, halfway between the North Pole and the Equator.
The Albright Visitor Center is the only one that is open year round. It is located in a little “village” near the north entrance. They have a clinic, post office, hotel, office buildings, lodging for employees and much more. We were leaving the parking lot and Julie saw a bison on the grassy area. I said, no its a statue…then it moved. The city girls had their first, but not last, encounter with wildlife. We followed the road to the Mammoth Hot Springs. It was steamy and smelled like sulphur. It was pretty in a weird sort of way.
They had signs all over the place to stay on the walkway or you could fall through and end up in boiling water. It was really cold, and we gave it some thought.
Another stop led us to a waterfall shooting out from under a wall of snow.
We saw several bison in a field quietly grazing on the grass and elk on the side of the road. The rangers said to watch out for grizzlies, but we didn’t see any and are not complaining. On our way out we rounded a bend in the road and saw a small herd of bison stampeding toward us. I’m not kidding! Julie said to stop the car and we stared in disbelief as our hearts were beating so loud we could hear them. They were galloping like horses, but are so much bigger.
At the last minute they veered around us. Whew…
We said our farewells to Yellowstone and drove off toward Bozeman. However, we didn’t get very far before we had another wildlife encounter. I was traveling about 60 mph and a deer jumped in front of us to cross the highway. I slammed on the brakes just in time. Can we please get to the hotel safely?? We did. We arrived in Bozeman at 6:30 after a very eventful day.
Our mileage is now 5,698. Tomorrow we are going to Idaho.