Ottertail Country

Ottertail Country
Ottertail South

July 25, 2010

Nostalgia hits again.


A friend of mine recently departed on a trip out west with his family. I've been viewing his posts about it on Facebook, and that got me to thinking of a trip Peg and I made out west on the Goldwing motorcycle that we had at the time. If I remember correctly, it was in 2004. I spent a little time scanning a few photos (we were still in the old technology at that time.....) and here they are!!

Not sure when we found this, but Peg is a big fan of Lewis and Clark.....

We booked directly to Montana via freeways. We did take the time to look at Teddy Roosevelt park, but kind of drove directly to Peg's cousins in Ronan, Mt. They took us on a tour of Glacier Park, and the next day we decided to motorcycle through the park.

These photos are not too good, but you kind of get the idea of the immenseness of the mountains in Glacier. That nearly horizontal line at about chest height on me is the Going To the Sun road, carved across the face of miles of REALLY steep land.

Pretty awesome scenery near Logan Pass, the highest point in the road that crosses the park.

A turn-out near (maybe) Lake Katherine, with mountains rising thousands of feet behind it.

Looks like we were having a good time, conned a passing motorist into being our photographer.

This is one of my favorites, a lookout on the Going to the Sun road. You can imagine how steep the slopes are, but you really need to see them in person to imagine just how incredible it all is.
Mycal, you need to talk Greg into going here.

Back to the real world of "just ordinary Montana". Just kidding, it was all great.

We visited Virginia City, Montana, and I had to shoot my way out of one saloon....

And, of course, I found Peggy in the other watering hole.....

Not sure where this was.....

We were heading up the Galatin Valley on our way to West Yellowstone. We didn't quite make it due to the huge wildfires. Lots of fires that summer. We watched for a while then headed for Livingston.

Stopped at Dan Bailey's fly shop, it's a quite famous place known to fly fishers only. Mycal, go here.

We headed into Yellowstone via one of the other northern routes. No fires in this area.

Elk grazing on the lawn at a big hotel/motel thingie in the park. Pretty neat.... as you can see, we were dressed for bad weather. It was in the 90's at lower elevations, but in the upper 40's here.

When looking for moose, thing small. That one in the background was really quite far away. Depth perception is destroyed in these grand expanses out west.
Double click the photo to see the moose better.

After Yellowstone, we left via the northeast entrance and headed into worse weather. We traveled through Cook City, rain and dropping temps. As we headed up toward Beartooth pass, the temp was in the upper 30's!! But we made it, and at nearly 11,000'!

I think this was in the Bighorn Mountains, not sure. I am sure that I was having a wonderful vacation.

We finally made it to Custer Park in SD. Needles highway was cool and this tunnel through solid rock was awesome. We went through, I dropped Peggy off and I went back through, turned around and came through again for the "photo op".

I had a staring contest with George. It lasted quite a while, but he blinked first. HA!!

We visited the Corn Palace, the first time we had seen it (maybe Peggy was there when she was a little kid, I'm not sure and she's not home to verify this). It is totally amazing.........

We had roasted corn. Go figure.....

People were looking at us like we were kind of nuts. Oh well, I'm used to that look.

So, did we have fun? It looks like it! This is at the rest area on Beartooth Pass. Once we got over that hump (the 11000' photo) the weather improved, the sun came out and we had a couple Hardee's little roast beef sandwiches from the day before, washed down with Diet Mountain Dew. Livin' the good life, with that exhilarating run down the Beartooth Highway to Redlodge still ahead of us. I think we need to do that trip again some year soon.


Another guest post!


Following another request for some guest posts, niece Kristi sent this bit of local news. Way to go Kristi!!!

This past weekend, I competed in my third annual Phillips Chain of Lakes Triathlon held here in town. It's a great race for all ability levels and one I take great pride in participating (in part, because my fabulous husband is one of the race directors :-)
The race began with a quarter mile swim. Everyone lined up at the city beach, and then swam over to Lionite Park/Elk Lake Pavilion, following the bright red buoys. Well, at least you were supposed to follow the buoys! When the gun went off, I was so excited to draft someone, that I blindly followed them and never bothered to sight, presuming the person I was following was! Learned my lesson the hard way - looked up about a minute and a half into the race and realized we were way off course! (Swim time - 6:53, about 2:30 faster than last year)

Came out of the water and had a quick transition - the wetsuit came off easy enough, and soon I was off to bike 18 miles! (Transition 1 time - 1:24)

The bike almost went right as scheduled! Since the course had some rolling hills and some head winds, my goal pace was 19.0mph - ended up with 18.8 (per official times) and 18.9 (per my speedometer), both of which are PR's for me during a triathlon! Even passed some boys, which made me feel good! (Bike time - 57:26).

And the second transition went off without a hitch! (Transition 2 time - 0:39)

At this point of the race I was right on pace with achieving my goal pace. And I was confident I could finish it, as the running portion has always best my strong suit. Only had a 5k left! However, things didn't go quite as well as planned on the run. It was so hot out, and it seemed to zap my energy. Kept having to remind myself to pick up the pace as this was a race, not a practice run! Seemed like I was running in slow motion. Also, the course was extra soft & soggy this year, due to all the rain. Although I didn't hit my goal time, I still need to be happy with having one of the better run times of the day! (Run time - 24:46).

Total time - 1:31:05, which was good enough for 3rd place overall for the women and first place in the local (Price County) division for women! Besides getting to kiss one of the race directors, I also was awarded a great pottered plate for the local award!

A special thanks to everyone for all their support!! It was wonderful having family and friends there to cheer me on! Although she didn't make any of the pictures, Grandma showed her support and cheered me on all the way through the race! She was even extra chipper for such an early morning! Mom and Dad were also there and served as volunteers for the day, helping participants in many ways.

Next race is set for Sunday, July 25th in Chisago City, Minnesota. It will be my second half-ironman distance race this summer (1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and 13.1 mile run). Once that's over, hopefully training, and my life, will slow down a little bit!