Road Trip to Alaska, Day 4

Road Trip Day 4: Dickinson, ND to Bozeman, MT (463 miles)


Today started with snow in ND and ended with sunshine in MT.


Leaving North Dakota the snow looked like someone had placed a lace tablecloth over the rocky outcrops and buttes that punctured the ground.

80 mph speed limit. Whoa.

I drove through a National Grassland. I didn’t even know we had National Grasslands. I saw two buffalo.

Drove through the Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Started to see some more interesting rock formations. Some look like elaborate layer cakes with all manner of amazing flavors.

A beautiful pheasant greeted me by the side of the road as I passed into Montana.

Unusual-Place-Name-Of-The-Day: Bad Route Road. I’d love to know the backstory to that one.

I saw two incredible beautiful black horses grazing on the top of a hillside with a huge panorama behind them that stretched for miles. It was stunning.

Montana is too big for photography. Nothing captured by a camera lens compares with what the eye sees.

I think there should be a category of art for power line towers. Some looked like people, some looked like cattle with horns. When there are so few trees, your attention goes to these structures.

I saw several fields full of young calves and their mothers. The calves romp about and try so hard to keep up with the adults.

There were flat places in eastern Montana where I had a 360º view horizon to horizon to horizon to horizon. I could see for miles and miles. Again, no photo captures it.

Just before Billings there was a vast burn area on the south side of the highway. The north side of the highway had homes and businesses untouched. I can only imagine what it must have been like to have that wildfire so close and then to have it not jump the highway.

I listened to local radio for most of the day. My favorite station had a slogan “The frequency for your delinquency.” You can tell a lot about an area by the kinds of advertisements they run.

As I left Billings, I was going up a slight hill. As I crested the hill, the Rocky Mountains came into view. What a surprise to see them all of a sudden. It takes your breath away. I kept wondering what the original pioneers thought when they saw this obstacle that stretched north to south as far as you can see.

I had a tremendous time catching up with 5 friends from Alaska. I am so grateful for their hospitality.


Tomorrow I drive into Canada and will end the day in Calgary!

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