Our Own Private Mountain

Instead of heading north in Montana, we picked just a little west, into more mountains for elevation. We’re outside a tiny town called Elliston, which is near Helena, which is HOT. It’s in the 80s up here in the mountains, but that’s not bad; a record high of 106 was set in Billings yesterday, 108 in Miles City. As my local friend, Tom, and I were texting (he has to work outside in this), it seems like the end of times.

Except for the wildlife around here, which reminds us what’s good. Elk, trout. A hummingbird in the tent.

Squeezing into the Woods

To take full advantage of the cooler woods, we found, seemingly, the only wooded spot on this Forest Service road where we could fit the trailer, and we gently guided her in. Ignore Tracy committing a felony there by cutting a tree limb.

We are really close to the trees around us, but thanks to Tracy inching back the trailer as I stood directly behind giving directions, we made it.

Now we’re all settled in the woods, being more cognizant of the solar panels’ intake because we’re not in the direct sun. Which is a good thing.

Our Mountainside Happy Hour

We can walk out to the sun, though, and to what would be an incredible view if there weren’t so much haze from wildfires.

Sometimes you can see the mountain range in the distance; sometimes it’s like it’s not even there.

Each night we load up the beach wagon with chairs, table, beer and snacks and walk out to this hillside, set up our picnic area, and enjoy our retired happy hour, which goes from about 7 until 9 or 10. Happy hours.

Where Are We?

You know I keep that map of all the places we’ve camped (separate from this blog’s map), and Tracy keeps track of our exact driving routes. Here are our maps combined.

I’m using the Shelly calendar, which means my icons from our first year on the road are blue (except where we stayed first and second year, in which case they’re yellow), and all the second-year places are yellow. Tracy’s using the solar calendar, so his routes in red are from 2020; blue begins on New Years 2021.

Whatever. I understand it! If you care to decipher it:

We started in Virginia and moved northwest (follow the red line),

  • to Iowa and northern Wisconsin,
  • to the UP of Michigan,
  • down the center of the U.S. to Texas,
  • east to Florida,
  • then back up the east coast (relatively).

Then we started again from Virginia (follow the blue line),

  • to Iowa and Wisconsin again, then this time
  • to central Michigan and up
  • to the UP,
  • then straight west.

One thought to “Our Own Private Mountain”