Friday, May 31st – Saturday, June 1st, 2013
It was another cold morning in Yellowstone National Park. We left Norris campground to check out Roaring Mountain then drove to Mammoth Hot Springs.
We checked out the Main Terrace and Trevor was being grumpy over having to see more “bubbly ground.” I, however, thought this was one of the prettier areas of the park from what we had visited.
After a visit to the gift shop, we made our way out the the park, leaving Wyoming and re-entering Montana through the town of Gardiner. We passed by the 45th parallel of latitude (halfway between the equator and the North Pole) on the way, and continued on US-89. We entered Gallatin National Forest and drove through several canyons (one of them called “Yankee Jim”), before the landscape changed to farm land with snow-capped mountains in the distance.
We hopped on I-90 West, driving through rolling hills before we arrived in Bozman. We grabbed coffee at “Rockford Coffee Roasters” before wandering around town and resupplying at Walmart. I exchanged climbing shoes at REI before we headed back downtown to eat falafel at “Chickpea Cafe.”
We checked out a few of the shops and walked around the neighborhood before grabbing more coffee, this time at “Zocalo Coffee House,” before taking I-90 towards Butte (pronounced “B-yoot, not butt, although pronouncing things wrong on purpose is fun).
They call Montana “Big Sky Country” for a reason! The scenery was amazing as we drove through Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest. We got to catch a nice sunset. We arrived in Butte, which reminded me of a mini-Las Vegas with all the casinos and illuminated palm trees. We enjoyed the people of Walmart as we filled up on water there, before returning to our van for the night.
Today marks our 3 months of being on the road and we’ve been having a blast! We took I-90 West out of Butte and made our way to Missoula. Once we got there, we checked out the downtown area which had a lot of cool shops and a art and craft market set up. After browsing, we went to a place called “Five on Black” which was an awesome Brazilian grill restaurant with some really great food. After we ate, we started searching for a Canadian road map. A shop owner directed us to a visitor center which had one for Alberta and which also carried a Glacier National Park booklet. We hung out and drank coffee in “Zootown Brew” before taking I-90 out of Missoula.
We took US-93 North which drove us through the territory of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribes where we saw indecipherable road signs and natural bridges so wildlife could safely cross the road. We passed snow-covered mountains and drove around Flathead Lake before arriving in Kalispell. We were so far north that the sun was still shining bright at 10 pm. We located the Walmart, parked, and tried to sleep through the noisy generator that our neighbor decided to run through the entire night.
Jump Back to Part 42: The Other Grand Canyon & More Bubbly Water
Jump Ahead to Part 44: Pancakes, Glaciers & Grizzly Bear Fun Time
Start Over at Part 01: The Blue Bubble, Freebies & A Rude Awakening