When I looked for that Spearfish Canyon snow picture for the Blackberry Winter post, I realized I never did finish getting us home from our Oregon trip last fall. I left us somewhere in western Montana in my November 13 blog, 'Following the North Route Home'.
In some of the tourist literature I had read about Scenic Byway Route 1 between Missoula and Butte. The trail left the interstate and ran south along the Flint River and then hooked back into the interstate sixty-two miles later. The area was settled by miners looking for silver and sapphires. You can mine for your own gems at several places along the route or in the town of Philipsburg.
The middle store in this photo is 'The Sapphire Gallery' where you could purchase loose stones or ones already made into gorgeous pieces of jewelry. The restored buildings are beautiful. The town was once voted among the Prettiest Painted Places in America.
The same day we were there, the actress, Scarlett Johansson secretly married French journalist Romain Dauriac, at the nearby Ranch at Rock Creek Resort. (Something I just recently learned.)
We had lunch in the Doe Brothers Soda Fountain.
It was a good thing we ate before crossing the street to The Sweet Palace.
I have never seen so much candy and so many different candies in one place in my whole life. You could take a container and just walk around the perimeter of the store and load it with whatever you wanted. I think the price was around eight dollars a pound. The center glass displays held all the different kinds of fudge, pralines, caramels, etc. Those were priced by the piece - three and four dollars if I remember correctly. I resisted it all except the piece of huckleberry taffy I was offered as we looked around. But boy, is my sweet tooth humming right now just thinking about all that candy!
This sign explains the dangers of 19th Century mining in the area. Bud wanted to take these two photos for our friend 'Jonesie' back home.
The sculpture garden on a corner of main street depicting James Jones (also our friend's name) escaping the Nez Perce Indians.
Old homestead between Philipsburg and Anaconda. The scenery really was spectacular.
The town of Anaconda was founded when a smelter was built to process copper ore. The smelter was closed in 1980 after almost a century of mineral processing. Clean-up of hazardous waste materials began. This area is now the Anaconda Smelter Stack State Park.
From Montana to Wyoming. Cattle grazing along the Crazy Woman Creek. Bud and I both had our theories about the creek's name.
After overnighting in Spearfish, SD, we took an early morning drive through Spearfish Canyon - a favorite drive from a trip in the area several years ago. Then we traversed south to north. This time we would be going north to south.
We had barely entered the canyon when I called a stop to take pictures of Spearfish Creek and look at rocks. If I were still 'collecting' here are a couple that would have come home with me:
This photo was for the little blue forget-me-not growing between the rocks.
Bridal Veil Falls. One of several waterfalls in the canyon.
Roughlock Falls near the ghost town of Savoy. By this time we were seeing quite a bit of wet snow.
Trying to get Bud's attention.
Leaving the canyon. Heading home. One more night on the road. If you are ever in the area, Spearfish Canyon is one of the loveliest drives I ever been on.
Almost home. Adair county wind turbines.
There may have been snow in the Black Hills, but there was still some green in the soybean fields of southwest Iowa.
The one rock I did bring home. It is palm size and did not require Bud's help to get it into the car.
Sunset over the pond. It is great to travel and we had such a good time with Kari & Ken but it is always good to be back home. Now we're looking forward to this fall when we go east to see Mark and Juliet. No promises about how long it takes me to post pictures of that trip!