Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Near Billings Montana...

Well I'm overnighting in a low budget campground right off of I-90 about 45 minutes from Billings, Montana in a small town called Hardin. Surprisingly, I found a wi-fi signal so I figured I'd post about today.

After stocking up in Rapid City , I had a couple hour ride to Devil's Tower National Monument. I got there late afternoon. It is a spectacular sight with eagles circling around the top, taking advantage of the upslope wind currents. It is 867 feet high and I'd guess about 400 feet across. No alien sightings to report. It was a very hot and sunny day. Since the side that I was on was all lit up by the sun, I decided against circling the tower. Especially since it was late and I knew that I had a LOT of ground to cover to get to Canada. The ride from Devil's Tower to Hardin was 4 hours. I tell you that roughly half of the distance covered had no electrical or telephone lines! Just miles and miles of prarie with cattle and sometimes white-tailed deer and antelope. In one 100 mile sretch I went through 2 towns that had no more than 15 buildings!

There was a prarie dog town on the access road to the Tower with some particularly friendly prairie dogs. I included a picture of one of these cute rascals!

The driving started to get to me mentally and emotionally this evening. This prarie landscape with an occasional butte is scenic, but it looks much the same after a while. I've just looked at the mileages involved and weather forecasts and it would appear that going all the way to Jasper may not be worth it, both in terms of time, distance and weather. It is another 10-11 hours driving rountrip. I'm already looking at 10 hours to get to Calgary tomorrow which puts me in close proximity to Banff. I think I'll settle for that. Lauren, it sure is easier to get to Calgary if you fly! But you already knew that!

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