Day 9

Starting mileage: 5861.2

The trains ran almost all night and when I say all night, I mean ALL NIGHT.  I’m wondering if that’s the reason why they don’t charge to stay at that campground.

When I woke up and crawled out of the tent, I found the fly was completely coated in ice.  My hands got so cold as I was packing up the tent that it took me probably twice as long because I had to keep shoving my hands into my armpits to regain feeling.  I put out food for the dogs but they just watched me struggle with the tent and probably added some new words to their already expansive vocabulary of curse words.  I had planned to make breakfast but decided to move on.

Pocatello is not too far down the road and we stopped at Red Hot Roasters.  I got a really good breakfast burrito and americano which I destroyed as we walked around the town.  I have a clip that I use for their leashes that allows me to go hands-free.  From the number of people staring at me, it seems that it’s an unusual sight to see someone double-fisting breakfast as they walk with three dogs.  The dogs were walking amazingly well so it made us look like superstars.

As we were driving down the highway, I saw signs for Frontier Pie.  I wasn’t going to stop.  I wasn’t going to stop.  Hang on…why are we in Rexburg, Idaho and why are we stopping at Frontier Pies?  Well fine, I can’t stop here and not go inside.  I mean that would be rude and as a Canadian it is my duty to be polite.  I ended up leaving with a slice of peanut butter chocolate cream pie for later.

I saw signs for Yellowstone National Park and my plan had been to cut through there but then when I saw a $30 entry fee, well same thing with all the other parks: if I’m going to pay that much money I’m going to make a day of the trip.  We took the highway around the edge of the park and found a parking area which let us hike into the edge of the park anyway.

It was a nice hike and we had not gone in too far when I noticed Jack’s attention was focused on something to our right.  It took me a few minutes to see the deer that was watching us.  I was able to get the camera out and snap a few pictures before it turned and bounded away. I wanted to let the dogs off for a run but decided that with deer and all the signs for bear, that would probably be a bad idea.  When we got back to the car, I poured out their water and ate my pie.  It was so tasty.

Jack knows there’s something out there.
New friend.
Too bad we didn’t have enough time to explore more.

We crossed into Montana and the first rest stop that we stopped at had a fenced in dog area!  While most rest areas have a designated pet walking area, most of them are unfenced and require the dogs be kept on leash.  Montana has had more fenced areas and nicer places than most states.  Bravo Montana!  We also made a stop to take in the fall foliage.  The bright yellow contrasted against the blue sky.  Stunning.

Had to stop for photos.
I could have sat here all day long.

A short time later as it was starting to get dark, we stopped at another rest area.  I saw signs for a pet area with an arrow off to the side that pointed away from the buildings along a dirt track.  I was intrigued and followed the trail along the side of the hill and up to the top.  There over the rest area was this wide open field with benches at one end.  The view from the top was incredible and with no one around and no one being able to sneak up on us, I let the dogs go for a run.  We lingered there until almost dark and I followed the paved path back down to the parking area.  And that’s when I found the sign warning about rattlesnakes.  Well it would have been nice to see that a little sooner.

Great view.
Out for a stretch.
Piper scoping the land.
Smiling Jack.
Leo looks like he’s planning mischief.
Professionals at posing.
We stayed long enough for this view.
Would have been nice to know this before we went up.

Remembering what the temperature had been the night before, I decided on a hotel and stopped in Mile City, Montana.  As I was checking in at the Motel 6, I asked if there was a good place for food and was directed to the Gallaghers across the street.  I popped in there and ordered the Rodeo Hoagie.  So good.

Piper decided that she needed some space and took up the other bed, leaving me to snuggle with the boys as we watched TV.  I discovered the show “The Last Alaskans” and stayed up late into the night before falling asleep.