Sunday, September 20, 2015

Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park, Montana


We left Beavertail Mountain State Park on September 16. We drove mostly interstate 90. We don’t normally travel in stormy weather, but we were ready to get moving and away from those trains. We ran into a pretty heavy rain storm just before Butte. We stopped at a rest area and waited it out. Kim was happy with my patience. I am doing better, really I am. We then went through Butte over Homestake Pass (Elevation 6375 feet) just East of Butte.

We left the interstate and followed the Jefferson River. We went through a narrow canyon. The rock formations in the canyon are very interesting. It was then just a 7 mile drive to the Lewis and Clark Caverns State Park. The scenery around the park is really beautiful.



We decided to stay here 5 days and get through the weekend. We wanted to go tour the caverns, but there is a .75 mile walk to get to the entrance and it rained most of the first two days we were there. It was also cold and we ran the heater each morning.

On September 18 the weather looked good in the morning, so I decided to take a hike up into the hills around the SP. I walked about 4 miles up and over a ridge and down to the fishing access area along the Jefferson River.


Here is a look back down to the campground.


As I walked there were a few signs pointing out faults and other geologic information.



The surrounding valley walls are very interesting.



The river looked like a great place to catch fish. The recent rain had the river very cloudy. I am debating about fishing while I am here. We would also like to do some floating in the kayak, but we would like to see it get a bit warmer and we need to figure out how to do a shuttle. Here are a few shots of the Jefferson river.



I walked along the almost empty road back to the campground. It was a very good hike. I loved the exercise and the scenery could not be better.



It stormed and rained much of the rest of the day, but we still had 4 days left and the forecast is for warmer and dry weather. We will take that tour of the caverns and see what else we can find to occupy our time.

In the mean time, we read. I have been enjoying a book that was written in 1963 and given to me by a friend we made this past summer. I had forgotten I had it. The name of the book is “The Two Ocean War” by Samuel Eliot Morison. It is a complete accounting of the actions of the US Navy in World War 2. I consider myself fairly knowledgeable on WW2, but this book has given me much more information to ponder and catalogue for the all important time when I next get to watch “Jeopardy”. We have not been able to watch TV since we left Gig Harbor September 2.

Enough rambling. Come back to see the photos from inside the Cavern and some other exploring of the area. 

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