My dad called me three weeks ago and said that he’d just bought himself a brand new Harley.
He was the one that got me into this mess when he rented bikes for all of the Weber boys last year. Little did we all know what would be happening just a year later. While watching my trip unfold, he was inspired to quit prolonging the inevitable and to grab life by the horns. I think he’s pretty excited to be a new Harley owner. If he feels anything like I did, I know he is.
So three weeks ago we are chatting about his new bike and he states that his goal is to meet me in Montana and to ride with me for a few days, if I’m up for that.
Of course! How many guys get the chance to ride motorcycles with their fathers across beautiful country? Or just doing anything adventurous? Do it while you can because time marches on and it will pass you by.
Since we made the tentative plan three weeks ago. It has been in the back of my mind since then and has been something we’ve both been looking forward to.
And here we are. We met today in White Sulphur Springs Montana. I came in from the west, and he came in from the south.
My route to get here today was pretty interesting.
Once again I did not sleep well. I was awake at 5am but tried to force myself back to sleep. Finally at 6:30 I’d had enough so I just got up. I rode out heading north and got breakfast in the little town of Hulett. The Sturgis motorcycle rally overflow reaches all of the way out to this town. I believe this is somewhere that most groups transit through on their way to the rally.
Anyway, from there I continued north through rolling hills and farmland until I crossed into Montana. Then it got monotonous.
Mostly flat and not much to see. I just set the cruise control and zoned out. I realized later that I hadn’t really been thinking about anything and that’s a good thing. There was plenty of opportunity there for something negative. I’ll take that as a positive.
I did stop in at the Little Big Horn. I got there just in time for the “Ranger Talk”.
That guy was amazing. He used to be a high school teacher and he was animated. He even had props. Seriously. Props. There were about 150 enthralled listeners by the time he was done, over an hour later.
This is a mass grave of over 200 cavalry Soldiers. By the time the Soldiers were originally buried, they were so decomposed that identification was impossible. The deepest grave dug at the time was Custers and his was only 18 inches. A year later the Army came back to find that animals had dug up all of the corpses. They were eventually all reburied here, at the top of Last Stand Hill. Custer and the other officers remains (what could be identified) were all reburied back east. This is a very solemn place to stand.
These are not actually tombstones but markers of where Soldiers bodies were found. The only one with a name on it is Custers, the one with black marking.
This is at the Indian memorial just north of Last Stand Hill.
I left Little Big Horn with a peaceful soul. It was good for me.
I headed on to Billings which I’ve decided is a town worth avoiding. I picked up a poker chip and had lunch. Then I got out of there as quick as I could. It didn’t help that it was 95 degrees there.
Next I just had to put it the miles and I’d be meeting up with my dad.
I didn’t count on the wind. Crazy wind directly from the side. It was so bad that it was literally lifting my helmet off of my head. Which was then in effect lifting me off of the bike. Which of course was blowing sideways hard enough that I changed lanes inadvertently once, despite my best efforts. It was downright dangerous.
My dad said he ran into some dangerous winds as well.
Now we’re hanging out in a little hotel in a little town and planning our trip for tomorrow.
We had a prime rib dinner at the joint next door and wondering where we’ll have breakfast tomorrow. Things are good.