And so we drove on. I’m very sorry if you’re from South Dakota or Eastern Montana, but I have to say, there is a lot of nothing in South Dakota and Eastern Montana. Which is fine. I was expecting that. And since I haven’t seen that much nothing since my epic road trip to Colorado with my brother*. And it was really beautiful. Also, aided with magic Dramamine, I knit on my hat on the car. Our destination was Falls Creek campground, which was a really super campground in Gallatin Range. It’s about 20-30 miles from Big Timber, MT, and you go down the valley and it is so incredibly beautiful. Then you enter the National Forest, and the road turns to dirt, then it really turns to dirt. Here is where we drive fearlessly despite the sounds of rocks spitting and ruts in the road and just a general “umm, perhaps a truck is a good idea. A beater truck at that.”
We found the campsite eventually about 5 miles down, and picked spot #7, which was a perfect little spot on the river, with, what luck, a somewhat smoldering log in the firepit (and coffee and bacon bits on the ground, which with the bear warning, nervoused** me, but I cleaned it up and hoped for the best. Bad bad former campers.)
Now while back in Big Timber, we’d picked up some beer, since heading to a campsite without it was a ridiculous idea. And so, while refueling the car, Greg went into the place there and came out with Twilight. Twilight is somewhat nostalgic for us since we had that beer on our honeymoon, camping on the Pacific coast on the Olympic Peninsula, just above First Beach. If you ever go there, I highly recommend the camping there. Super. But I digress. So we opened the beers and were pleasantly surprised to be commended on our bravery.
I gathered a few logs, blew on the smoldering log, and before you knew it, we were in business. I knit on the hat, Greg did some fishing, we made fake mac and cheese, it was great.
After dinner and watching the fire burn out while it got dark, we secured our food in the bear box, and headed to the tent to sleep. With the notice which warned of “excessive bear activity” and the the roaring river which I decided would obscure any sound of said bear until it was too late, I can’t say it was best sleep ever. But like it always does, the morning came and was beautiful and cool, and we packed up and headed into town for some groceries and a trail map as we continued on to… Mystic Lake! Tune in next time for a great hike, through an alpine meadow, where two tired hikers will benefit from the elevation again and good beer in a can while playing rummy by headlamps. Super time. Promise.
*His graduation-from-high-school-present. I saved up my entire 2 weeks of vacation for the entire year, then in what nervoused my mother to no end, we headed out. My mother plans vacations to the second, which with 4 kids is probably necessary. When she asked me where we were going, expecting a list of hotel reservations and day to day “where we’ll be” I answered… “Um, well, we’re driving to Colorado.” She just about had a fit. But we went, armed with a AAA tour book and maps, and we had a fantastic time. I’ve approached all vacations, including this one, in that fashion and it’s worked out great.
** Yes, I use ‘to nervous’ as a verb. We now ‘friend’ people and all sorts of things, and this is hardly a highfalutin*** publication, so I’m going to use it since it’s in my vocabulary.
***The word highfalutin cracks me up.