Thursday, June 4, 2009

Joliet, Montana/Yellowstone

Wednesday- we left Buffalo, Wy and headed towards Montana to visit my Uncle Gary (my moms brother). We stopped at the site of the Battle of the Little Big Horn. If you are a history buff this would be a great stop, for us it was a good excuse to stretch our legs, go "potty", see a few prairie dogs and take a picture of the kids in a cemetery. Weird, I know. Then on to Joliet, which is on Hwy 212, which takes you south into Yellowstone. We had a great visit with my uncle whom I hadn't seen in 5+ years, and got to meet his new bride, Bonnie. Joliet is a two bar town and they own both of them. In Montana kids can belly up to the bar, so that's what our kids did for a bit while we got reacquainted and met Bonnie. They also shot some pool. That night they made us an awesome dinner, back at their house, and we played a crazy game of charades.

Thursday-We drove south to Roberts and had breakfast at the Roberts Cafe with my uncle, it was a place we never in a million years would have stopped. We had to walk through the kitchen to get to the bar/dining room. The walls were painted with murals by the owner/cook. It was fun going some place only the locals would go.
YELLOWSTONE- in the words of Luke "spec a taca lar lar". We made a stop in Red Lodge, very fun town to walk around in. Went to the Candy Emporium and got each of us enough sugar to get us through the day in the car. Red Lodge is definitely worth a stop. Then on to Yellowstone by on Hwy 212 which is also called Beartooths Pass. It was literally too much to take in. The road has only been open for a week, so we saw lots of snow and even some really crazy people at the very top of the pass skiing. We got out at a "lookout" at 9100ft and we could hear the wind whipping through the mt.s the river roaring below and the smell of evergreen was so strong it made you want to keep taking deep deep breaths through your nose. And the most amazing thing was we saw a butterfly, like and angel floating by. Where it came from at that altitude with the cold temps, was like God snapping his fingers in front of us.
The car was a buzz once we got into the park, there was so much to see. And then Dad thought it would be a good idea to make a betting game out of it. "The first one to see a bear $5, a moose $2, a buffalo $1". Well it seemed like a good idea until it turned into the Olympics of spotting animals and everyone was yelling and fighting and making up crazy rules. END OF GAME. Moms going to go crazy. Some yelling from mom and a death threat by dad and the betting game was over and peace was restored. Well we saw one bear from a distance, we saw a multitude of elk, antelope, beavers, a moose, a ram, and hundreds of buffalo. We even got caught in the middle of a herd,of buffalo, on the road in our truck, a bit too close for comfort, if you as the mama. The weather has been crappy if I may be so blunt. And today wasn't any different(okay ken just reminded me that today did start out sunny-oops I forgot), it didn't really allow us to stop and get out and take any of the hikes. But we are hopeful that tomorrow will be a new day full of sunshine. Look out old faithful the Johnson's are headed your way.