The last few days of our trip were spent in Western Montana. One of my dear friends from my days at Northern Youth Programs, Lisa, and her family live in another beautiful part of Montana. The live in a valley between two ridges. As we approached their area, we began noticing more and more dear. It was dusk Sunday evening when we arrived and the dear were everywhere!!
Backing up a bit …
Leaving the Fairfield area, we enjoyed the views of the light covering of snow that was quickly melting.
Heading southwest we went through an area where houses are few and far between. Lois mentioned that she feels like she might be on the moon. I totally agreed.
The closer we got to the Roger’s Pass at Continental Divide, the patchier the snow was.
Until we started climbing to Roger’s Pass, the snow was thick and wet!
There was pretty much a beauty overload the whole trip!
Check out the overpass below. It is for wildlife to cross the road.
We could see a little smoke hanging in the air to the west.
Our only full day in Thompson Falls area, Lisa took us around to see the local area, something both Lois and I love doing!
There was a lot of vibrant colors in the towns!!
It was quite amazing to us to see all of the wildlife just wandering around town. How would you like to eat a picnic lunch at the park, surrounded by these?
Lisa had to drop something off for a friend, and there was a buck in a yard down the street.
We took a walk on over the area where the hydro dam. We noticed several Bald Eagles flying nearby.
I noticed an eagle dipping down toward the water and it was one of those moments that I was glad had my camera ready!! You can see the fish toward the bottom left of the photo. I didn’t notice it until I was editing the photos.
He flew off to enjoy his spoils and soon there was a group of crows around him, offering him help with eating it.
Lisa’s friend, Sadie, invited us over for supper and apple cider making … brewing … pressing. Yeah, that’s it, pressing. I guess that’s how you say it. Either way, we made apple cider after supper. It was an interesting and delicious experience!
The setting of their place is amazing!! This view is from their back porch.
And they, also, have deer wondering around the place.
Sadie tried to get the buck to come closer but the extra people around made him a little skittish.
The cider was SO good!! Here’s a photo of the biggest and smallest apple I could find from the boxes we were processing. This was an off year for Lisa’s trees.
I wish I could’ve been out during a time when the Milky Way was at the best viewing location. I think this happens in the spring/early summer for the US. This is only a fraction of the Milky Way. The lack of light pollution in the west makes it a great spot to see a maximum number of stars.
On our way out the next day, I finally saw some bighorn sheep grazing near the road.
The ladies took us to one more hot springs in Paradise, MT. You can find out more info here: Quinn’s Hot Springs. This has a total of 5 outdoor pools, most of them only a few degrees apart, except for the one pore-closing, hair-standing-on-end one that gripped it’s icy fingers around your ankles (me) or your neck (my cousin Anne who shrieked her way through a dip every once-in-a-while).
We flew out of Missoula, relaxed, rested up, and ready to get back home (for the most part). If a vacation feels like it could/should go on longer, it must have been a good one!!