Monumental Montana

Each year I publish a list of all the states we visit and note when any are a first time. Next January there will be another one nocked off of list of 50. I have now been to Montana, stopping in Missoula. This leave just Alaska, Hawaii and Idaho for me: Josh has just Alaska left. It’s hard to believe that I have not been to Big Sky Country before; Josh has a handful of relatives here. We crossed to border in Northern Wyoming and the “Welcome” sign was too small to snap a picture but I did see it.

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Two days is not nearly long enough to actually explore Missoula but we tried. After meeting up with Josh’s cousin, Caleb, a visit to his neighborhood bar was in order. However, lucky for us it not just a bar but actually a microbrewery. The town is full of them; we have certainly not been to another town where you can hope on your bike and head a few blocks down for a local pint. The first one we visited was Drought Works packed with families. After a few tastings it was time to experience downtown and it’s unique nightlife. Just like us Caleb enjoys a good vino as much as a good brew. At The Red Bird Wine Bar we had the pick of delicious tapas and some featured wines.

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Even after staying up until the wee hours of the morning, to solve the world’s problems, day two had more in store for us. A favorite local activity for a lazy day was to tube on the Missoula River. Most of our compatriots back in Illinois have probably gone tubing before but this was my first time. Oh my was it fun, just bobbing around like a cork telling stories. A quiet dinner and more fellowship our time in Montana drew to an end.

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The best way to end our monumental trip to Montana was to exit into Idaho! I guess this leaves just two!

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A Brother of a Roadtrip

Today we started our more than 2000 mile journey to Whistler Mountain in British Columbia. This trip will take us about five days but fortunately we have more time than that available. We have time to stop in Cheyenne, to pick up the mail. There is time to visit Greybull and see Big Bopper. We even have time to swing into Missoula and hangout with Josh’s cousin and his new bride, Montana being on the very short list of states I have yet to visit.

Courtesy of Google Maps

Part of my job is the logistics of our tours, when and where the truck needs to move but I don’t plan the routes. Josh was able to work all of these stops out, actually they all worked themselves out. Today while checking the map I was disappointed to see that we would just miss Omaha and pass up my brother’s family. However we would be hitting Lincoln, NE. My brother works for the USDA and spends a good portion of his days in the field. I hoped that by chance he would be working in that part of the state. A quick phone call later and boy oh boy did we get lucky! We were right by him at lunchtime.

I haven’t seen him since thanksgiving and there isn’t a better way to kick off a roadtrip.

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