Sunday, October 5, 2014

Montana Trip 2014 - Part VI

This is the continuation of a trip my dad, my friend Jacob, and I took at the end of July.

(Sorry for the delay in posts, it's been a busy couple of weeks.  New boss, Jury Duty, end of year projects starting to pile up, uugghh!)

Day 9

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It was Sunday, August 3rd, 2014.  A day before the official Sturgis rally started, and we were headed that way.  But first my Butler motorcycle map of Wyoming listed some great rides through the Bighorn Mountains, so we spent the morning crossing that range, not once, but twice!

From Dayton we climbed into the foothills, on the northeast side of the range.
 It was heating up down below, but where we were headed the temperature would drop down into the sixties!
 The ride on highway 14 was so amazing we just kept going.  No stopping for pictures. Just enjoying the ride and the company.  It wasn't until we had come down out of the mountains, and were about to head back in, that we took some time for some photo opportunities.  One of these days I'm going to have to invest in one of those GoPro's.

This is highway 16, headed back to the east.  The road followed a river canyon into the hills.

 Jacob and I overlooking Meadowlark Lake.
 Powder River Pass, the high point of highway 16 as it crosses the southern portion of the Bighorn Mountains.
 If it wasn't for the sports bike, you'd swear he was a mountain man of the 1800's.
 Highway 16 lead us into the town of Buffalo Wyoming.  My dad was a big fan of the Longmire TV series.  It's ironic that the last episode aired a day after this photo was taken.
 We stopped at the Occidental Hotel and Saloon for lunch.  This place has a pretty fancy history, see link, that housed visitors such as Buffalo Bill, Teddy Roosevelt, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid!  My wife had to explain to me what Occident is opposite of.  Oh, like you all knew!

 The inner lobby of the hotel.  The saloon was off to the side.
 A very blurry picture of the saloon.  The numerous stuffed animals on the walls were popular with the restaurant visitors.
 From Buffalo we had to hop on the Interstate.  The only positive was that the speed limit was posted at 80Mph, so it felt as if we were speeding:)

Luckily we didn't have to spend all day on the slab.  Once we hit the town of Moorcroft, we veered north until we spotted our next point of interest, the Devil's Tower.  No, we didn't have any close encounters while there:).  You could tell that we were close to Sturgis though,  motorcycle traffic had picked up significantly!
 Wait a minute, maybe we did spot some aliens no. sorry, that's just my dad.
 One of the cooler aspects of the tower were these birds flying around the top.  There was something mesmerizing about watching them circle over the edge of the massive stone structure.

 Here I am showing my hidden x-men ability to grow in size until I'm the same height as the tower. 
 A couple of action shots as we were leaving the park.

 The sun was starting it's descent into the western sky as we crossed over into South Dakota.
 One of those magical portions of the trip where you try to capture the essence of your surroundings.  You realize you'll never be here, at this portion of your life, again and you have to absorb as much sensory input as you can to remember the moment.  You can also take a lot of photos, which helps as well.
 South Dakota must have known that I was coming.  Just look at that great face!
 That evening we pulled into Wyatt's Hideaway Campground which is outside the town of Belle Fourche, SD.  This was a nicely run campground, set on 13 acres, which was setup to handle large crowds very nicely.  We picked this place as it was about 20 miles outside of Sturgis, and would allow us to get up the next morning and experience the rally.

 Next post, Sturgis pictures!!! Stay tuned.  Thanks for reading!


  1. Yay South Dakota! My domicile since '03, you know.

  2. Sure some pretty views from up in those mountains.

  3. @Dugg - It's a great state. The Black Hills offer some nice motorcycle riding roads. I'm sure it's a great place to explore on Bicycle as well.

    @Trobairitz - Amazing scenery! And those were just the places we pulled over to take photos:)

  4. Just checking in to make sure you two are still alive and well. Hope you are getting some great riding in before your hot weather hits.

  5. Sorry for no posts recently:( Real life has gotten a bit hectic. Hoping to finish this trip post soon. Thanks for checking in on us:)

  6. Happy New Year!! Hope things are well with you and the misses.

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