Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Another New Road
Yesterday's trip from Cody to Garryowen, Montana was another new route for us. This time we took US 14-16 which is the Bighorn Scenic Byway and Wyoming doesn't exaggerate its claims one bit. Abandoned airplanes, red rock, tan rock, white white streams, overflowing rivers, the Big Horn mountains and roads that tried to twist back around on themselves which is not necessarily a fun thing when your twenty-some foot long truck is pulling a 38 foot trailer through said mountains. But gorgeous it was and we even spotted a moose cow on the far side of Shell Canyon before we crested Granite Peak at 9034 feet, which was a climb of 5000 feet for us. Quite a drive indeed.
Friends Don and Vicki were waiting patiently at the campground for us; they had held over an extra day so we could meet up for one day and catch up on their Alaska cruise. Denny and I lost a few hours of time with them because our morning started with Denny having to have a Moh's procedure done to remove some basal cell carcinoma so we left Cody about three hours later than we normally would plus those steep, twisty mountain roads slowed us down quite a bit. But the four of us made the most of what time we had, yakking, enjoying Don's delicious homemade chicken enchiladas and swilling homemade Lynchburg Lemonade. Good times!
Don and Vicki are heading east to get to Ohio in time for our 40th high school reunion while Denny and I are still working our way north and west before we need to be in Seattle for our own Alaska cruise near the end of August. The four of us will meet up again in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in the fall for a month of talk, golf, games, Happy Hour bar hopping, beach walking, shark teeth searching good times.
In no particular order, leaving Cody, Wyoming, heading east on US 14 through the Big Horn mountains to Interstate 90 up to Garryowen, Montana.
Denny and I thought this was an airplane graveyard. It turns out it is the Museum of Flight and Aerial Firefighting. Kinda.
Driving through the Shell Canyon portion of the trip. There is a waterfall in the canyon, but the parking lot was too crowded for our rig, plus we had miles to go and promises to keep.
More of the canyon.
Every curve in the roadway led to a new palette of colors.
The state of Wyoming does something I think is interesting--they label the various rock formations with the era that it was created along with the tentative dates. I did not take any pictures of any of the signs though.
We had been coming down off the mountains for quite some time before I took this photo since it was so hazy in the distance. We were WAY up there!
After we were all set up and settled in with an adult beverage and chatting with our friends Don and Vicki we were subjected to a brief thunderstorm. When that cleared up we ate dinner outside and then had a nice (not spectacular, but nice) sunset to enjoy.
The clouds above us were pretty neat, though. Vicki and I checked for stars later, but the clouds were still thick in the sky. I would imagine I'll be able to see a lot of them if the clouds clear up this week.I would say our route is a good one for a day trip as there were a lot of picnic areas and small visitor centers (and that waterfall!) and places to pull over and just enjoy the scenery. The pictures don't begin to do the area justice.