My Journey

ITTOG.....I'm guessing that it's tire tracks in the roadway that you see ? I'm not certain.....I see all of my pictures on a Smartphone.....

Arjan.....so much to see beyond the National Parks.....

Foy.....sounds good to me.....



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Pishkun Reservoir.....1,550 water surface acres, 2,683 land acres and 13 miles of shoreline.....

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We set up camp along the northern shoreline.....in a small campground where we were the only ones here.....it was the perfect spot to start our exploration of Pishkun Reservoir.....

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Like most people on this website, I'm not a big fan of campgrounds but that's mostly because of the people. Here, where we were alone, and the fee was only $5 per night.....well, that's darn near free.....so why not stay here ?

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Once we picked out our campsite, we hiked up to higher ground to get a good overview of the lake.....these four pictures, like a panorama.....show the major portion of the reservoir from east to west.....

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Now, we were just having the most incredible skies during our stay here.....the transformation from dark, violent skies.....to friendly skies filled with rainbows.....

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We could barely wait for the following day to get out and explore.....almost immediately, I decided that we would walk the entire shoreline (we didn't).....

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That evening was spent in a lawn chair.....reading a great book.....and also, finally getting out and picking up a bit of trash....not so much but the good news was that there's just not much trash to be picked up here.....

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Then it was early to bed cause we had big plans (big is actually an understatement.....that's what we would later find out).....

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Initially our hike along the shoreline went really well.....

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.....we found all kinds of cool stuff.....lots of various animal footprints (no bear).....lots of waterfowl to admire.....small crustaceans such as these crayfish (there were many).....

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But the problem that we had was sticking to the shoreline.....it seemed like we were constantly hiking up to higher ground.....you know.....to see what we could see.....

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With 13 miles of shoreline.....that was already a pretty good sized task.....but we were adding many more miles to our hike.....so eventually we canned that idea.....and we hiked wherever we wanted..... without any goals.....

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We saw deer every so often.....and the waterfowl.....and sadly, we came across this carcass.....I think maybe it was a coyote.....

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Foy

Explorer
Not to get off topic but I figure @YukonMontanaTannerTrapper along with a lot of readers on this thread would like this.

@Foy, is this you?
Ha! Don't I wish I had Rob Thomas' youth, his PhD, his stellar teaching career, and now his stellar writing and video production career!

I have had the distinct pleasure and honor of some correspondence with Dr Thomas over the last 5 or 6 years but our paths have yet to cross in person, even though I've offered to treat him to lunch at the Dillon Taco Bus at least three times. But I suspect it's only because my "Montana field season" which usually includes a tank of diesel at the Rocky Mountain Supply and a lunch at the Taco Bus is the same field season during which he works his magic elsewhere in Southwest Montana.

Rob Thomas is the co-author, and I frankly suspect is the primary author, of the magnificent "Roadside Geology of Montana" Second Edition, released in 2020 if I recall correctly. Anybody who enjoys getting out and about in Montana, reading good material, and learning about the world of geology and the history of Montana should have a copy on the dashboard of their pickup at all times.

Foy
 

Foy

Explorer
Myron Cook is worth watching as well.
He certainly is worth watching. I'd put Rob Thomas, Myron Cook, Shawn Willsley, and Nick Zenter in the same pot and would be equally happy with whichever excellent, thought provoking, and friendly geologist a blindly picked out sample brought out.

I may have misspelled Shawn's and/or Nick's surnames--apologies is so, but I expect a YouTube search on the misspelled names will still find them.

Foy
 

TheDeliverator

New member
He certainly is worth watching. I'd put Rob Thomas, Myron Cook, Shawn Willsley, and Nick Zenter in the same pot and would be equally happy with whichever excellent, thought provoking, and friendly geologist a blindly picked out sample brought out.

I may have misspelled Shawn's and/or Nick's surnames--apologies is so, but I expect a YouTube search on the misspelled names will still find them.

Foy
Nick Zentner has a unique style and is excellent at presenting Geology to the curious.
Myron Cook is a favorite of mine as well.
 
In case anyone cares, I really am not a rockhound. I happen to come across stuff that puzzles me, and I immediately think, I need to pass this by Foy. That's about as far as it goes with me & rocks.....well, I do like to climb on them.....



I woke up one morning at the lake and realized that I only had enough coffee for two more mugs.....so it was time to go. I asked Google Maps to show me the way home.....

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Well, at least Google Maps was consistent.....I actually had reservations when it told me to turn down this particular road.....

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We drove all the way back to the lake and then gave a go at option #2.....we were now completely out of coffee.....we really needed to go home.....

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And honestly, option #2 was a scarier than option #1.....I had little to no hope.....

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Literally speaking here, there were no turn around options other than throwing it into reverse and backing out for miles.....and that sign that said "Stay On Road".....how could you not ? It was a minimum thirty foot (some places well over one hundred foot) drop off or embankment on either side of the canal road.....

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I kept thinking.....the entire time.....that there's going to be yet one more locked gate blocking the canal road.....

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Well, it turned out that after driving 15 miles along that canal, that we finally found an exit ramp. It was steep, a little risky, but darn, I really wanted off that canal road.....I was ready for some pavement.....and a bit of civilization (but not a lot of civilization).....

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I sure did enjoy exploring in the plains of Montana and I look forward to returning to this area sometime this summer as there's just so much to see.....and I just love to see what I can see.....

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Now we found ourselves driving south on Highway 287, headed home.....we finally knew where we were and we knew where we were going. For some reason, and I don't know why exactly, but when we came to Augusta, Montana, I decided to leave the main highway, and take Highway 435 south.....

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My plan was for this road was for it to be paved.....and that turned out to be a bad plan. I pulled over, looked at Google Maps, and decided that I'd continue as I wanted to see this one of a kind bridge that laid ahead on or near Highway 435.....

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I followed Google Maps like someone follows their cult leader.....

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And I ended up here.....

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We got out of the truck.....inspected that bridge.....and determined that this was not the special bridge that we were looking for.....but, darn, that river sure was pretty.....

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I suspect that this sign that we found later was for the bridge that we were looking for.....and honestly (again), I really could care less about seeing that bridge which is called the Dearborn River  Highbridge.....so I took a short cut back to Highway 287.....drove home.....already planning for our next roadtrip.....

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We took a few weeks off from travel and spent some time relaxing at the cabin.....

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Late May brought 5 inches of snow in the valley.....not unusual for this time of year in Montana.....

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.....the mountains.....of course.....got quite a bit more.....

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I was able to finish reading a great book (thanks to Able Guy for the recommendation).....I absolutely loved this book and would recommend it to anyone that loves the history of the American Indian. Edward Curtis was so much more than a photographer.....read the book to know more.....

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I also read this one by Yvon Chouinard.....I liked parts of it.....I especially enjoyed the numerous old school climbing pictures.....

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The snow.....it didn't last long in the valley.....

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And much like my beloved birds.....

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.....we once again got the itch to travel.....

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I believe that when one thinks of the word "travel", and I say this in it's broadest sense, that they generally think of great distances and long periods of time.....at least I do. Our next adventure was neither a great distance nor a long period of time.....it was close by, and it was only for a few days.....but I still consider it to be "travel".....

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I guess one might say that I'm just crazy about the Crazy Mountains.....cause I am.....

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I just absolutely love these mountains.....so that's where we went for our next adventure.....

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We set up our first night's camp (parked the rig) at the Rock Creek Trailhead.....

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After a peaceful night we awoke to see a herd of elk in the surrounding fields.....

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Later that morning we headed out for a hike to Rock  Lake.....18 miles roundtrip.....well, I never seriously thought that we'd make it there.....and we didn't.....

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The heavily forested trail passed thru a mix of private and federal lands.....that's the single negative issue with the Crazy Mountains.....lack of access.....

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The trail passed over several ridgelines.....

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The views from the trail's highpoints of the Absaroka Mountain Range to the south were outstanding.....

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In between each ridgeline was a small creek crossing.....

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I spotted an elk with her fawn as we hiked along the trail.....

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I choose (chose) not to do anything stupid like approach them for a better "Instagram photo".....they were chill as were the three of us.....they laid down and the fawn continued with it's meal.....

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All of the streams were flowing full with the snowmelt as temperatures in Montana were finally rising.....

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Eventually the trail turned up one of the roads belonging to the Crazy Mountain Ranch.....

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After hiking for approximately 3.5 miles, the trail turned off the road and crossed Rocky  Creek.....the water in that creek was running strong and it was high.....we returned to the camper.....7 miles round trip. The dogs cooled themselves in Little Rocky Creek (dogs on leash.....no elk chasing allowed).....and we prepared for a much longer hike to one of my favorite spots for the following day.....

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