2013 Western Road Trip Day 18, June 16th

Today was another sunny but cool morning with a beautiful blue Montana sky. After a delicious breakfast at a local East Glacier cafe we were on the road to Yellowstone National Park.

Throughout the trip we have been in several Indian reservations. It is very evident that they all should have had the Blackfoot Indians do their negotiating. The Blackfoot reservation has miles of fertile farmland and beautiful mountains. Unlike those tribes who rely on casinos for revenue, the Blackfoot are heavy into agribusiness and cattle.

Blackfoot reservation farm land

Blackfoot reservation farm land

Blackfoot cattle

Blackfoot cattle

Mountain views from Blackfoot reservation

Mountain views from Blackfoot reservation

Reservation also has rugged beauty

Reservation also has rugged beauty

These figures sculpted in metal are at the entrance and exit of the Blackfoot reservation

These figures sculpted in metal are at the entrance and exit of the Blackfoot reservation

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We stopped to take a rest break at this little town just off of the reservation and captured this dinosaur Americana.

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We are spending the night at Gardiner, MT the northern portal of Yellowstone National Park. We checked into our motel before setting out to do laundry.

Our motel Absaroka Lodge. Our rooms were on the top floor, no elevators

Our motel Absaroka Lodge. Our rooms were on the top floor, no elevators

Jane noticed this cow elk crossing the bridge near our motel and Babs snapped these photos.

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Cow elk crossing bridge

Cow elk crossing bridge

After doing laundry we immediately ate dinner and then headed into Yellowstone National Park. Our first stop was the Mammoth Hot Springs.

This elk was grasing near the hot springs. They are almost tame.

This elk was grasing near the hot springs. They are almost tame.

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Mammoth Hot Springs Terrace

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Leaving the hot springs, we headed to the Lamar Valley area in search of bear and wolves. On the way there we “just missed” a black bear cub, but Denny saw a big black bear literally hugging a tree scraping the bark off. Unfortunately we couldn’t get a photo because “Ranger Rick” pulled up behind me, just as Denny was ready to snap a photo, and forced me to move along. The we were out until 10:30 pm and didn’t see any other wild life except for some buffalo and their calves on side of the road but it was too dark for a photo. I wouldn’t even have seen them except a calf bolted across the road in front of me. Anyway, here is a shot of the sunset.

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Tomorrow we will head south toward Old Faithful.

Babs Says: A blurry bear is still a bear.

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