Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Hiawatha Trail

While we were in Montana Larry and Sherry recommended that we look at biking the Hiawatha trail in Idaho. It's an old railbed that's been turned into a multi-use trail - it's run by the Lookout pass ski resort which means there is a fee to it. The best part about it is that it's pretty much all downhill!

This is one of the many tunnels on the trail - several of them are very long and none of them have any lighting - so it's required that you either bring or rent headlamps or flashlights.
Some of the incredible views...we were so thankful to have been riding it on a sunny day since the weather had been awful for weeks before - and in fact it rained the next day.

In the distance is one of the many trestle bridges on the trail.

After being in Texas for most of the winter it's so refreshing to see tall trees!!

Long, dark tunnel...ask me sometime about not being able to see in one of them...

This is from one of the bridges.
The trail is 13 miles long and you can opt to take a shuttle back up to your car - so of course we did...If your interested in biking it both ways I would suggest to drive to the bottom of the trail (all forest service type roads) and then ride the trail up and then back down - that way you don't have to bike it back up. But of course that's just me being lazy...or practical...


After we left Texas we drove up through Colorado and watched the Eagles in concert in Denver - it was a great concert. After that we drove to Geraldine, Montana where Scott's brother and sister in law live. Larry & Sherry were kind enough to let us park the RV in the driveway while Scott was up on the slope and even though the weather pretty much sucked I got to do a few fun "only in Montana" things...

We went to a rodeo in Vaughn - which is just outside of Great Falls (the closest big town to Geraldine). I think these cowboys and girls are some of the most incredible athletes out there (not to mention the livestock).
It was really tough to get a decent action shot since it all happened so fast.

I don't think I could have walked for days after this...

After the rodeo there was a stunt motorcycle rider who has been in the x-games - he kept doing stunts while in the air.

We also got to attend Geraldine days - aka a real rodeo! :) This celebration takes place once a year and is a way for the community to raise money for everything from 4H to the fire department. This was the goat roping competition - probably the most entertaining part of the day!

Here are the big boys trying to rope (the 2nd one in is Larry). They didn't have much more luck than the little kids!

Here are just some of the goats they were using...

During the afternoon the teenagers in town all took place in the amazing race. During part of the competition each team had to bring a goat from one end of town to the other (about 5 blocks).
They needed to have 5 of their horses get shoed - either because it hadn't been done yet or because they had thrown a shoe with all of the rainy weather. I was amazed at how still most of the horses stood during the entire process.

This Farrier uses a technique called "hot shoeing" - not everyone does it anymore because it takes more time but by shaping the shoe to the horses foot the shoes generally stay on longer.

He said it didn't hurt the horses - but it sure did smell bad - and the horses reacted a little bit to that.

Couldn't resist a picture of Shorty ready for a 4-wheeler ride. It's not possible to ride on this without his help...

A day out from the tough life of ranching...any of you golfers who happen to be in Fort Benton, MT take the time to play this course - it was a lot of fun.

We drove to Bigfork, MT one weekend - Aunt Eunice was celebrating her 87th birthday so we wanted to help. This is a picture of some falls on Hwy 2 on the west side of the pass just before West Glacier. What a beautiful road!

Here is Aunt Eunice, Sherry and cousin Judy (Aunt Eunice's daughter).

This is Square Butte - looking out from their ranch.

Here is Larry training one of their horses (I still don't know how they keep all of their names straight - half the time I can't remember my kids' name) :)
See the yellow rainjacket just to the right and behind Larry? This horse kept spooking at it - so they spent a good bit of time just training the horse that it wasn't a bad or scary thing...

Springtime on a ranch and your sure to have babies! This pretty foal is from one of their horses - they hadn't decided on a name when we left. This is a very active baby - it was a lot of fun to watch it run and jump.

Here is a baby on a neighbors farm - it had been born sometime the previous night so was less than 8 hours old. It was so cut watching them trying to figure out how to lay down and get up again.

Two momma's delivered the same night - there was one more left to go and she looked like she felt miserable.

baby ducks...

and puppies! There were also chicks, goats and kittens...too much fun!