6 Months Part Duex and Alamogordo

Yes, our last post was our 6 month post.  Well, really our 6 month video post, but we knew when we put it up that we also wanted to do a text post and we are at least three weeks behind on stops.  🙂  So, let’s start with the 6 months on the road.

We’ve said this before, but our original plan had always been to spend a year traveling the country and then settle down somewhere.  Sean has always loved Florida and is an avid diver.  Sherry loves warm weather and Florida, so Florida has always been our number one potential landing spot.  Our travels have made us add possible ‘permanent’ locations such as Montana near Glacier National Park.  We had always planned on spending the winter in Florida then using the last few months of our ‘year’ to travel up the East coast.  Well, even the best laid plans can change, and we have prided ourselves on saying we will take life as it comes and enjoy it.  While in Nevada, we were contacted by an RV park/resort in Florida to stay for the winter and join a team of work-campers.  The RV park is gorgeous and right in one of our primary ‘settle down’ locations.  Sherry had been looking at several spots for teaching opportunities, and this area was top on the list.  It is also in a great location for diving.  Hmmm.  Well, we shouldn’t put the cart before the horse as they say.  We did accept the position, it too good to pass up. Sherry will be looking for teaching positions, and we will see what happens.  We have talked a lot about how much we enjoy this life and how hard it would be to change things up and get ‘normal’ again.  The worst part would be not being around each other 24/7.  Yes, seriously, we love the time together and would miss it a lot.  So, at 6 months we are loving what we are doing but also contemplating more change. We will see.  We have also laughed and said that if the ‘worst’ case is we continue to travel then ‘Oh Well’.  One final thought: as we write this we are sitting in Destin, Florida.  Technically, we have come full circle because for spring break this year in March we came to Destin to ‘test’ our lifestyle before selling our house.

When we arrived, this time, we did a quick set-up and then drove to the beach.  It was calling to us!  Just a few minutes on the sand, staring at the ocean was incredibly cathartic.  We talked about our journey from ocean to Mountains and all the land in between.  This is truly a beautiful country and we are immensely lucky to have discovered a good part of it.  Who knows what the future will bring.  Carpe Diem!

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Worlds Largest Pistachio

 

Now, about Alamogordo.  While staying in Roswell, we were looking for other places to visit and decided Alamogordo would be perfect.  It was only a few hours away and we both wanted to see the white sands.  Wow, we are so sad that we didn’t have more time to stay!  After a drive across one of the central mountain ranges in New Mexico, we were soon at our new RV park (Boot Hill Resort – GREAT park and location!) and able to see the sands a little less than 20 miles off.  We unhooked and drove off to see what we could see.  Driving up to the White Sands monument we were amused to see signs that said the highway may be shut down during missile testing.  That was new for us.low res-3967

There is a single road into the park that led off to the dunes in the distance.  It was remarkable to watch the desert scrub gradually disappear to be taken over by… well, white sand.  It looked so much like snow and snow dunes that we were caught up in the weirdness of a warm day and what appeared to be snow.  In fact, we were really caught off guard when we rounded a corner to see a sign say the paved road ended.  The road continued, but was now plowed sand.  Wow, so much like a Midwest snow scene…. Minus the houses, trees, well, you know.  Then, we saw fellow explorers and kids using ‘snow’ sleds to slide down the face of several dunes.   Too much fun!  We drove as far as we could, got out and walked through and on some of the dunes.  Sherry just loved it and we quickly decided to come back the next day and take some photos.  Since Sherry models on the side, we made it a glamour photo shoot.  Amazing scenery.

While in Alamogordo, we also went out to the Space Museum, saw the worlds largest pistachio, drank some wine, and realized we had to come back.  There is so much more we want to see and explore in this amazing place that we have moved it up our list of must return places.  So far: Montana, Alamogordo and the Grand Canyon….  Hmmm,  regardless of whether we give up the ‘full time’ life, we still have so much we want to see, but we are truly grateful for what we’ve done so far.

After leaving Alamogordo, we had a quick dash across the state and into Texas.  We had plans to spend a few weeks in Dallas and see Sean’s daughter and son-in-law.  We stopped a few times; one stop in Amarillo was extended a day because of winds over 40 MPH and gusting to 60 MPH.  Crazy!  We used the time to catch up on work and also visit the Cadillac Ranch.

This was an amazing piece of ‘Americana’. A row of old caddy’s hoods buried in the soil.  Visitors were encouraged to bring paint and ‘tag’ the cars.  Sherry put a sweet love note on one and also an advertisement for loveyphoto.com.  🙂

We have more videos coming, so stay tuned for more updates on our 6 months on the road series!  We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!  Happy travels!

If you haven’t already, visit our website to view all our travel photography at:

http://www.loveyphotography.com/Traveling-Photography

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6 Months on the Road

Before we start on this post we wanted to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving.  We are fortunate enough that we are able to spend this holiday with family and are looking forward to good food, company and maybe a drink. :).  Wishing the same for all our Blogger friends and fellow full timers.

Wow, it seems like we were just writing about being on the road for 5 months and now we are approaching our half year anniversary.  So much has happened in that time (and before).  We made our Sunday video a recap of the last 6 months and you can see it below.  For our fellow RV’rs with spotty WIFI here is a quick summary:

  1. Planning
  2. Repairs
  3. Seeing amazing sites
  4. Loving each other and our pups.

Three Months on the Road

Since starting our journey, we have done a monthly update on the things we have learned about living in an RV.  We are a little late on our third month installment, but better late than never, right?

Our summer workamping kept us jacks down for two months, but we did a lot of planning and preparation before leaving and then a few things since hitting the road again.  Here are a few of those things:

  1. Hitch Height.IMG_23582 Ideally, you want your rig to have an even ride.  That is, it should be level when hitched up to your tow vehicle.  Sean had noticed that our RV had a decidedly nose down appearance when hitched up.  There are two ways to adjust how the 5th wheel will ride when hitched.  On our rig, we can take out four bolts on the kingpin and raise or lower it OR take out four bolts on the hitch to raise or lower that setting.  Sean removed the bolts from the hitch and raised it one setting (about an inch or so).  That gave us a level look and ride (we checked with our levels).  Since the adjustment we have gone about 600 miles and all seems great.  Sean thinks it tows easier but….
  2. Cleaning the RV:  7992AF34-9025-4709-9F52-F11A82DD76C1We have gotten in the habit of doing a weekly deep clean inside the RV.  We do daily maintenance but once a week we scrub down the inside.  This probably isn’t ‘big news’ to anyone but it is an important point.  We both hate clutter and in a large house it is easy for even a small amount of clutter to spread out and not be noticeable.  In an RV, even a small amount is quickly noticeable.   The only issue with the weekly cleans is Sherry has to work to keep Sean from shoving everything into the ‘shit’ drawer or cabinet.  You know, the place where all the little odds and ends go that don’t have a permanent home.  Sean swears the cabinet makes a perfect ‘new’ home. 🙂  We also took the opportunity to scrub down the outside of the RV and apply wax to the front.  We had collected a bug lovers dream on the front of the Big Horn and had to spend a few days scrubbing and applying bug and tar remover.  Sean felt a layer of wax would at least help after our next encounter with the bugs.  We will let you know.
  3. Staying fit and healthy:  Despite all the hiking, we quickly realized that we were using some muscles and not others.  At home we stuck to a fairly regular routine of running, yoga and some weight training.  We didn’t want to bring weights with us in the RV so we got a set of weight bands instead.  This last month we have been especially conscious of doing some cardio work as well as stretching and Yoga.  We have a set of workout DVD’s we like to use for workouts -P90X.  Good stuff, especially the 30 minute workouts.  Sticking to a routine has been the toughest, but we have balanced ‘cardio’ hike days with yoga days.  Sherry has also done more healthy cooking.  The first two months of our trip we fell off the vegan and healthy food wagon (many times).   Since getting back into a healthier routine, we have both noticed a difference in how we feel.  OH, but there is always room for Huckleberry Pie!  (If you’re interested in any recipes, let us know and Sherry will give you details!)
  4. General RV maintenance:  We are very conscious of little things around the RV that could go wrong.  Sean will periodically walk the RV inside and out to check for loose fittings or other potential problems.  It is amazing the number of bolts and screws that loosen up after a day or two on the road.  Before leaving Montana, Sherry went through and checked caulk around seams, it had been months since we had the seams caulked and some areas were showing minor splits.
  5. IMG_23592Heating the RV and Propane use:  Amazing how fast we have gone from summer weather to mid fall… Well, we are also usually in areas 5,000 feet or higher now too.  Anyway, we thought about ways to conserve our propane long before we started traveling.  Both of us enjoy sleeping in a cool to cold room but it isn’t fun typing while trying to wear gloves.  To warm the inside we brought along a radiator we have had for several years.  It is a Honeywell electric/oil radiator.  Relatively economical to run and what we used at home to keep our bedroom at a comfortable temperature.  We have used it several times when the temps have dropped into the low 40’s and upper 30’s and have found it does a nice job maintaining a comfortable temp in both rooms of the RV.  We did fill our propane tanks up once, about a month ago, but that is the first time we have done that since October of last year.  Admittedly, we only had the RV out a few times before starting our adventure.  For the last two months we have used our shower (hot water) and have done a lot of cooking and some baking.  That said, it does seem like we have done well in propane use.  Any comments from fellow RV’rs?  What is normal propane use?
  6. Driving in windy conditions: A few months ago we did drive through some crazy storms in Western Missouri and again in South Dakota.  Maybe we didn’t notice the wind as much because of the rain and other issues.  We did notice it a lot when we hit Idaho and were driving down HWY 15.  Steady winds at 20 MPH and gusting over 30 MPH.  Question for everyone: When do you decide the winds are too high and call it a day?  In these conditions, we noticed very minor trailer sway.  Sean could see (in the rear view mirror) the bubble on the trailer level move from side to side.  We just kept our speed down and drove through.  Sean did say it was a bit unnerving from time to time. 🙂

IMG_2357In a previous post we had mentioned our slideout ‘preventative’ repair work.  So far all has been great.  We completed adding the fiberglass panels to the slides and after multiple uses everything is looking good.  Since that post, we have met one couple working through similar issues with their RV slideouts.  They stopped by our site a few weeks ago to compare notes and look at what we had done.  Their RV slideouts use small sleds and they were noticing wear on the wood the sleds slid on.  Their plan for a fix was to place a thin sheet of metal on the area the sled would use to help distribute the weight.  Since then, we have heard from several others with similar problems.  Which brings us to the next topic, the RV community.

Over the summer we met many full-time RV couples or those who were on the verge of going full time. In our last week at Timber Wolf, we also met several full-time RV families.  We have truly enjoyed sharing experiences with the people we have met.  One family (three children) shared several RV groups with us and were the encouragement we need to jump onto Instagram with our blog and photos.  Our screen name is Sean_and_Sherry

Final thought – Have fun:  Not a lesson we needed to learn but one to share.  We continue to love our time together as a family and the opportunity to explore together.  Now that we are back on the road, we are re-energized, if that is even possible, and excited to see the next stop. 🙂

In our next post – Yellowstone!!

Workamping and Moving On

What’s Workamping, you say? We didn’t know what it was either until we started this whole adventure.  Workamping is really popular for full time travelers to be able to offset some of the costs of traveling.  We first talked to some people about this when we were in Florida.  We met two very nice couples who were working at the state park.  They told us about their experience, basically a few hours a day greeting people, spreading bug killer (for fire ants) and cleaning the restrooms.  For a few hours a day 5 days a week and in return they had a full hook up site.  Many campgrounds offer workamping jobs to long-term travelers.  The campers agree to work a certain amount of hours for the compensation of a free stay at the campground (they usually offer a FHU site and some have restrictions on what type of rig you can bring to their property).  They want to be sure if something is parked long term that it doesn’t look bad.  Some places even offer hourly wages as well as FHU sites.  You must be willing to stay somewhere for a lengthy amount of time because the minimum for most jobs is two months.  We found the site http://workampingjobs.com/ really helpful to look for campgrounds who were hiring.  After our trip back from Florida we decided to put in our resumes on the site and see what happened.  We had an option of targeting specific regions of the country.  So, we talked about areas of the country we would like to spend a few months exploring and came up with four regions.  If we had a request from one of those regions, we would jump at the opportunity.

Shortly after putting in our information, we received an e-mail from an RV site in Montana near Glacier NTL Park.  This was Sherry’s top region to visit!!

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Our ‘work’ vehicle. The campground is large, so we were grateful to have this baby to get us around!

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Sherry putting out the ‘closed’ sign – even though most people just ignored it and walked on in!

Timber Wolf Resort (http://www.timberwolfresort.com) is a really nice campground with RV sites, tent camping, and cabins.  FTer exchanging e-mails with the owners and a few phone calls we decided this was too perfect an opportunity for us to pass up.  Our ‘duties’ as workampers were to clean and restock bathrooms, housekeeping cabins, and watering flowers.  It was not difficult work, and we enjoyed getting out and having a job to do each day.  The days where the campground was busy and there were a lot of beds to make were not the most fun days, but like we said, the work was never hard or strenuous. IMG_2340 We also had some interesting ‘finds’ in some of the cabins…  Gave us pause to think why people would leave certain things…  We were occasionally thankful for rubber gloves.

The work gave us a chance to be out and about meeting people in the campground and getting a little exercise while we were at it.  But don’t get us wrong, we weren’t hauling stuff around on our backs.  The owners had some sweet toys that allowed us to maneuver around the campground easily.

OH, we also met a bear while on our duties.  At the end of August we saw a black bear moving through the woods near some of the campsites.  We CAREFULLY watched the bear from the doorway of the camp comfort station.  LOL  Wouldn’t you know, we didn’t have our cameras!!

The best part really is having the opportunity to explore an area and to take our time.  Most days, after we finished working, we would run out and hit one of the near trails (we were only 9 miles from West Glacier).  If we didn’t hike, we went in and looked at the sights in Whitefish, Columbia Falls or Kalispell.  It didn’t take us long to fall in love with this area.  We met some wonderful people and enjoyed the genuine friendliness of most of the locals.  If you are in the area, don’t forget to visit the Huckleberry Patch for some pie or other yummy treats.

After being at the campground for 2 1/2 months, it was hard to think about leaving.  It was long enough to feel like we were getting settled into a new home.  Christine and Phil, the owners of Timber Wolf, are really wonderful and treated us very well while we worked for them.  For our first experience in Workamping, we feel that we got really lucky to be able to work for them.  We would highly recommend Timber Wolf to anyone visiting the area.  The RV sites are shaded, and the park itself is very picturesque.

Now it is onward to the next adventure!  See you soon!

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The worst part of the job was putting the linen on the top bunk! Sherry always ended up with bruised knuckles and head!

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Watering the flowers! It was SO dry this season.

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Cleaning up a cabin…you never know what might be lurking under the covers! Beware of the left-behind undies!

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Sherry stripping a bed.

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Breaks are always good!

 

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These pretty babies are also on the property. NO, we did NOT have to clean up after them!

 

Hidden Lake — Awesome, Inspiring, Gorgeous….

How many of you have been to Glacier?  Any favorite spots you would recommend as must see areas?

One of our hopes for this extended adventure was to be able to spend time in one area and see as many sites as possible.  Sites that most people on a ‘vacation’ wouldn’t get a chance to see.  The last few weeks in Glacier really have us wondering if we will be able to see and do all we want.  The park is the size of several states and is a true hiker’s paradise.  That is, very few roads and a lot of short (6 to longer mile) hikes to get to something ‘big’.  We’ve joked that we love this area so much we may end up living here, at least that would give us a chance to explore to our heart’s content.  We might also be able to keep up with our Blog posts. 🙂

Right now we are quite a bit behind on our posts.  Over the last few weeks we have visited Two Medicine, Lake Mary, several falls, Polebridge, Whitefish…  We have plans to get into the trails around Bowman Lake and definitely Many Glacier, as well as several other spots in the Park.  Forgive us if we run out of adjectives to describe this area.  Beautiful, awe-inspiring, breathtaking, each is appropriate and will surely be overused by us over the next several posts.

Setting Moon over Mt. Oberlin.

Setting Moon over Mt. Oberlin.

Sean has even begun trying to remember some of the positive adjectives used in his favorite TV show, BBC ‘Top Gear’.    We have often found ourselves at the end of a trail just awestruck by what we are seeing.

Sherry's new favorite photo.

Sherry’s new favorite photo.

On our second trip to Logan’s Pass, we decided to leave much earlier in the hopes of finding a spot in the parking lot or at least in the smaller pull off area about a half mile from the west side of the pass.  We entered the park, from the West Entrance near Apgar at about 8:30 AM.  There was already a fairly long line at the check in station and we were concerned about finding a spot.  Regardless, it was a gorgeous day, a little cooler than the last several and relatively cloud free.  For this trip, we planned pretty well and had our backpacks loaded with some hiking snacks, water and a change of clothes, if needed.  We also planned out two trails we wanted to explore.  The first was the Hidden Lake Trail, the other was the High Line.  Our priority was Hidden Lake, with a thought that we could do a little of the High Line depending on time,  Sean was looking forward to getting some great photos of waterfalls and mountain vistas.  He was bringing along two lenses and a tripod to get really steady photos.  Unfortunately, he forgot the tripod and had to stand very, very still for some shots. : )

Our drive up the Going to the Sun Road was gorgeous.  This time around, we decided to skip the turnoffs and try to make good time to the pass.  We found ourselves in a long line of cars weaving up the road. Many bicyclists made the going rather sporadic and a bit scary as we reached the narrowest parts of the road.  Still, a fun and scenic drive up to the pass.  As we got closer, we realized our chances of finding a parking spot in the lot were going to be very slim, so we did use the lower area and spent some time photographing Bighorn Sheep at the trailhead before hiking to the pass.

Big Horn Sheep near the entrance to Logan Pass

Big Horn Sheep near the entrance to Logan Pass

The park rangers at the Visitors Center were very helpful with all the visitors, answering questions and also giving ranger talks on a variety of topics.  One of the things we both have commented on is how helpful all the rangers have been.  On an earlier hike, we had one walk with us for a stretch, talking about the park, places to see and being very personable.  I wish we had gotten her name so we could have passed on a positive comment to her bosses.  Anyway, the visitors center was very crowded and we only took a short time to look around before hitting the a Hidden Lake Trail.

low res-8289The trail starts behind the visitor center and is another very well traveled trail.  In fact, most of the trail, to the lake overlook, is a wooden board walk.

low res-8282From what we gathered, this helped to protect the delicate ecosystem at the pass from tramping feet.  Periodic signs along the trail asking visitors to stay on the path helped reinforce our thought. : ).  The start of the hike we were greeted with tremendous views of ‘Alpine Flowers’, and wildlife from Marmots to Prarie Dogs and Sherry’s other favorite, Mountain Goats!

Marmot under part of the boardwalk.

Marmot under part of the boardwalk.

We first saw several goats standing on a snow field along the side of the Mountain.

Big Horn on the snow field on Mt. Oberlin.

Big Horn on the snow field on Mt. Oberlin.

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This little one started bleating for mommy just a few seconds after we took the photo.

It was amazing to see them walk along the steep rocky face!  It was even more amazing when we rounded a bend to see one munching on some food just a few feet away.  Fortunately, there was a family between where we were standing and the goat.  They were trying to get their children in close for a great photo opportunity.  OK, yes, that was sarcasm. : ).  It was this hike that gave us some great examples for our future ‘snarky’ post about some of our fellow tourists.  But, later for that.  This hike was just too beautiful.

As I said, most of the trail was a boardwalk.  There were several places where we walked over stoney ground and even some snow!  Crazy, snow on the ground in the middle of July!  Beautiful little ponds created from snow runoff, waterfalls and tremendous views.  low res--14

Small waterfall and snow field along the hike to Hidden Lake.

Small waterfall and snow field along the hike to Hidden Lake.

When we arrived at the lake overlook we learned the rest of the trail was closed.   The Grizzlies were feeding near the lake and doing other bear stuff that made it dangerous to hike near them.  So, we stopped at the overlook for some photos of the lake and surrounding mountains.

Hidden Lake

Hidden Lake

It was well worth the hike.  Our hope is that the Bears settle down enough for us to do the complete hike before we have to leave the area.

Gunsight MTN and Sperry Glacier in the distance.

Gunsight MTN and Sperry Glacier in the distance.

After lingering for a while, and eating a light snack, we headed back for the Visitors station.  Along the way, we decided to check out the first mile or two of the High Line Trail.

Another angle on Hidden Lake

Another angle on Hidden Lake

We didn’t go far this trip.  Just far enough to know we needed to come back prepared for a long day on the 6 mile, one way, hike.  Another must do hike for us.

For more photos from this post, go to the following link:

http://www.loveyphotography.com/Traveling-Photography/Hidden-Lake-and-Logan-Pass/

At the Trailhead for the Highline Trail.

At the Trailhead for the Highline Trail.

Our First Month…. and Glacier National Park

low res-7983Today marks a big milestone for us on our travels… Wow, milestone, travels… get it?  Well, today is our thirtieth day since moving into the RV.  One month ago we were leaving a very cold and rainy St. Louis and heading west.  Over the last few weeks, we have both remarked on how fast time is passing.  We plan to be on the road for a year and then make a decision where to settle down.  However, since leaving we have met several couples who had the same or similar plans, and have decided to keep going.  Who knows what the future will hold.  For now, all of us, pups included, have adjusted well and are loving seeing this country, meeting new people and making new friends.

So, the lesson for the day on RV life is stabilizers.  We don’t mean the type already on the RV, but supplemental ones to hold things like the kingpin and any slide outs you may have.  We did run across a lot of information about this as we were researching life on the road;  however, like the WIFI hotspot, it fell into the ‘let’s wait and see’ category.  Since leaving we have met and talked to several people who have had a variety of additional stabilizers on their RV’s.  Nobody had a negative word to say about them and constantly went over the many benefits.  Slide out supports help stabilize and take weight off the mechanism, especially if the slides will be out for an extended period.  Kingpin stabilizers help in overall stability and greatly reduce any ‘shake’ in a 5th wheel.  We have noticed some motion when we move around, especially when Bates (our big red dog) decides to jump on the bed.  So, we decided to look into the kingpin stabilizer when we arrived at Glacier.  It didn’t hurt that our new neighbors/friends had one on their 5th wheel and had positive comments about it.

We found a stabilizer at a local RV store, about the same price as you could find on Amazon, so we bought it.  After nearly two full days, we can attest that it greatly reduces any motion.  We also ordered slide-out stabilizers (found those cheaper on Amazon) and will put them in place when they arrive tomorrow.

King Pin Stabilizer.

King Pin Stabilizer… Oh, Sherry also had to have a garden so we bought a cherry tomato plant.

I mentioned earlier that today was our one month ‘anniversary’.  To celebrate, we headed into Glacier NP and drove along the ‘Going to the Sun’ road.  A truly breathtaking drive and white-knuckled in some areas when driving a large pickup.  There are plenty of turnoff areas on both sides of Logan Pass to stop and admire the scenery.

Sherry standing near some rapids on the West side of the pass.

Sherry standing near some rapids on the West side of the pass.

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Our goal was Logan Pass, and we made it.  However, we should have followed the advice of our neighbors and left early as the small parking area was full when we arrived. Fortunately, we were able to park nearby and hike a trail following a creek up to some remaining snow (mini glaciers,

LOL).  We loved it, the temps have been in the low 100’s and upper 90’s but when we hiked it was breezy and in the upper 60’s.  Just for fun we threw snowballs at each other to say that we had a snowball fight at the end of June!  We plan on returning to the pass in the next few weeks and really exploring.  For now,  follow the link at the end of this blog to our website to view the photos we took on the drive to the pass and then leaving through St. Mary.

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Piegan Pass trail and SNOW!

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After we left the park, we followed an outside route that ran between Glacier NP and Lewis and Clark National Forest.   We stopped at a little town outside of the park that had a sign about “award winning huckleberry pie”. We’ve already tried the pie from one place because we were told that we couldn’t pass up trying all the different ways they use huckleberries around here.  We bought some huckleberry licorice too which is very good!  But we digress – we stopped at the little shop that had the award winning sign and bought two pieces of pie.  They were actually more delicious than the first pie we tried!  We will now have to make comparisons for all huckleberry pie in the area. It is a great responsibility, but we will do it for the good of all!

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World’s Best Huckleberry pie location!

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Largest Purple Spoon…

They also had the “World’s Largest Purple Spoon”, and you know we had to get a picture of that!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life on the road after one month?  We’ve hit most of our early revelations we covered in earlier blogs.  Even as ‘non-material’ people, we realized how much ‘stuff’ one collects in a sedentary life.  More important, we realized that time together and memories collected as a couple are so much more important than stuff collected.  Overall, our first month has been beautiful, fun, and relaxing.  We have also realized that you cannot be scared of taking risks and saying “let’s see what happens”.  We have many more months to come that will hopefully be just as amazing!

We’ve been asked if we are sick of traveling yet, tired of being in a little box, or tired of each other… Nope, because our life isn’t in the box.  We find it wherever we are staying, the people we meet, and this beautiful country we call home.  We love being with each other and have already started talking about whether we want to do this for more than a year.  (We still want to start a family, and even though the pioneers found a way to keep babies in covered wagons across the country, a foundation and secured to the ground place to call home would be nice.)  Yes, it has only been a month, yes we know problems may arise, but it has already been more than we expected.  Here’s to the next 11 months… or more!

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On the road outside of the east entrance of Glacier. Colors in photo are what they appear in life.

Check out all the rest of our photos from our recent Glacier visits!  http://www.loveyphotography.com/Traveling-Photography/Glacier-National-Park-Late-Jun/

 

Crazy Horse

Crazy Horse Monument.  This was taken from the 'arm' of the monument.

Crazy Horse Monument. This was taken from the ‘arm’ of the monument. To get a sense of scale, you can see the heads of some other climbers in the lower right corner of the photo.

We have had a wonderful couple of days!  Back in St. Louis, at our garage sale of all places, we learned that this Saturday and Sunday were two of only four days in the year that allows visitors at Crazy Horse a chance to walk to the top!  How lucky are we?!  They call it the Volksmarch, and we got a medal like they give out in marathons.

IMG_1969 IMG_1972 The hike was a little brutal, but we blame it on the lack of exercise we’ve had lately, and the change in altitude…and we’re sticking to that story!  🙂

But really, the hike was wonderful – over 4 miles through the Black Hills around the monument.  We literally walked around the mountain as we worked our way up to the top.

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You can see the tunnel and what will be the ‘arm’. If you look closely, you can also see the rough outline of the horses head beneath the hand.

The scenery was breathtaking with occasional glimpses of the face on the hill peering out through the trees.  We were so fortunate as the day before the area had seen heavy rain and storms.  For us, it was clear with occasional puffy white clouds.  A gorgeous day.

Learning the history and being up close to the work in progress was a humbling experience.  The closer we got to the top of the mountain, the more amazed we were at the sheer scale of the project.  The time and energy put into such a piece of artwork is awe-inspiring.  We would later learn that, when finished, this will be the largest work of it’s type in the world.  For another perspective, the heads on Mt. Rushmore would fit in the area behind the face on the image above.

Photo taken by a coupe we met while hiking to Crazy Horse Monument.

Photo taken by a couple we met while hiking to Crazy Horse Monument.

We met some really nice people as we trekked together.  Once nice couple took our photo, and then spent some time telling us about many of the local spots to see.

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The artist’s scale rendition of what the final work will resemble.

This hike and exploration of the visitors center took us nearly the whole day.  We can’t wait to see Mt. Rushmore!