Saturday, February 14, 2015

On the Road Again

We're heading south on another road trip. To stay on better roads through the snowy north we drove to Lethbridge and then south from there. The roads were actually in great condition so we probably could have taken a more direct route, but you never know.

In Lethbridge we enjoyed a nice supper at Miro Bistro and a great coffee on the way out of town from The Penny Coffee House.

As usual, we're avoiding the interstates - I hate them with a passion. We stopped for lunch in Helena (at Bernie's Bistro). After lunch we wandered up their nice pedestrian shopping street. It was the first time we'd stopped here and it seems like a nice town.

We try to limit our driving to 6 hours or so per day. That leaves time for coffee and lunch and a walk somewhere.

We ended up in Three Forks Montana (near Bozeman) at the end of our first day in the US. Lacking internet we looked at the list of accommodation in our car GPS. It's always tough choosing solely by name. We picked the Willow Creek Inn but when we arrived where the GPS said it should be, there was nothing there. We drove back into Three Forks and pulled into the gas station to fill up. Across the street was a nice looking historic hotel - the Sacajawea (named after Lewis and Clark's native guide). While Shelley bought gas I went over to see if they had any rooms. It was Valentines and a long weekend so it was a long shot, but we were lucky enough to get the very last room.

Supper was a challenge since the restaurant was completely booked up with Valentines. The one opening was at 4:30pm, about 5 minutes after we arrived. But we managed to reserve a couple of seats at the bar for 6pm which gave us time to go for a walk and to relax on the outdoor veranda. The temperature was only +16c but it was quite pleasant in the last of the sun. I don't think it's normally that warm here at this time of the year, but we certainly weren't complaining. We had a great supper and drank one too many glasses of wine. (Blodgett Canyon Cellars from Montana) If you're in the area and like this kind of hotel we'd definitely recommend the Sacajawea.

We haven't seen a lot of wildlife - a few snowy owls, some deer, a couple of pronghorn, a few hawks, a ring-necked pheasant, and a bald eagle.

Today we continued south to Twin Falls with a short stop and hike at Craters of the Moon National Monument. We knew supper would be a challenge again so we headed out early. We were hoping to eat at a place we'd really enjoyed last time - Canyon Crest but they were completely booked, even in the lounge, due to Valentines. We ended up at River Rock Grill which was decent although nothing special. (Only one glass of wine tonight, Sawtooth Winery from Idaho.)

Tomorrow we're headed for Great Basin National Park, one of the less well known national parks and one we haven't visited before. There's not much around there for towns so we'll probably be camping, assuming the weather stays nice.

Hard to believe, but I haven't taken a single photograph yet! No doubt I will catch up at some point :-)

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