Montana Mountain Trails
I love living in Montana.
I love the opportunities it provides for me
and my husband, Bob, to get out into nature.
I love the mountains, the numerous trails,
and the scenery – everywhere I go…
… everywhere I look,
it’s beautiful in a unique kind of way
Come along with me, and Bob, and our Boston Terrier, TazE,
and three other couples and a single guy with his dog.
We headed north-west outta Ennis
to Twin Bridges and then
turned west, took a break,
and went north into the
Big Hole area.
The ride on “Lucille”
(our red-headed Polaris Razor on which we have a BALL),
was much tamer than the ATV ride I took earlier this week!
We made a rest stop in Twin Bridges
– a little more than 3/4 of the way to our destination.
Then on we went – seemingly forever – off the main road –
headed for some unknown destination
(at least it was unknown to me and Bob and our trusty traveler, TazE).
You couldn’t hear me over the roar of the engine.
I said, “Wide-open country-side!”
We had no idea our destination was a remote graveyard
in what used to be Rochester, MT
and an old abandoned mine far up the trail
in those mountains out there –
where the sky kept getting darker and darker.
There are eleven graves labeled “UNKNOWN” in this cemetery.
In a community of only 2,000 at its max,
how was anyone “unknown?”
Most of the gravestones were well marked. Some even appeared to have had recent visitors. We were way the heck away from civilization… but here were flowers at the grave site of 3 Claridge siblings who died at 3 1/2 months and their sister who died at birth a year before. Doesn’t your heart go out to those parents??
In these harsh conditions, some did live to full adulthood.
I wish they could tell their stories.
I loved Margaret’s tombstone
(as much as “love” and “tombstone”
dare go together in the same sentence!).
Look at it… I think she was 90!
Her story was partially told on this stone:
“Do not go gentle into that good night. ..
Rage against the dying of the light.”
When I die, I am sure I will not “rage against the dying of the light.”
I want to fly toward the Light…
and indeed, that Faith is what keeps me going!
I wanna keep loving extravagantly until I am 90+
Isn’t this old gate that greeted us
when we entered the cemetery a treasure to behold?
The sagebrush in this area inspired the clothing
I have chosen to wear to my granddaughter’s wedding next month.
I love the earth tones of pale green and beige.
We stopped at an old mine and had lunch.
Just finished before it started to rain.
Those are two of our ATV buddies, Caroline and Gail,
chatting about whether or not to chance
getting the chairs and lunches out and sitting down to relax.
We all did… and finished just in time.
Here’s Bob – looking down at TazE – asking,
“You wanna get back into Lucille?”
She said, “You bet!”
I had her on a leash
because she was not friendly with Boone,
the other dog on this trip.
TazE is an “only child,”
and not used to being around other dogs.
We passed some wonderful white-faced cattle
on our way back to the pickups and trailers.
Some of them ran to get out of our way
(our four-wheelers are noisy),
but others ran alongside to try and race us!
The remains of civilization were everywhere along the way.
Hard to believe there were 2,000 people living back in here once upon a time!
Cattle guards kept the animals from following us out.
We returned to our bluer skies –
getting hooked up and into our pick-ups
just before a huge hailstorm hit.
I thought I’d see dents in the pickup hood when we got home.
But, no… all was well.
It was a fun and an interesting, educational day.
Thanks for taking time to travel vicariously with us!
Someday you need to make a trip to Montana
and come out four-wheeling!!
See ya tomorrow.