Fort Benton to Great Falls- Cattle Drives and Luxury Kamping - Undaunted Porridge - CycleBlaze

July 8, 2018

Fort Benton to Great Falls- Cattle Drives and Luxury Kamping

Heart 6 Comment 1
Dee Fortecool pic!
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2 years ago

The librarian in Denton warned us a couple of days ago that the road from Fort Benton to Great Falls was narrow and congested. Fortunately she was talking about US Highway 87, which we were only on for about 4 miles. The rest of our route was on highway 228, also known as Highwood Road. Though most of the road did not have shoulders, the traffic was minimal and most motorists that passed us were courteous.

Heart 6 Comment 0
Which way is the wind?
Heart 3 Comment 0
The Missouri
Heart 4 Comment 1
Dee Fortethat's Missourah (how everyone says it that isn't from here).
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2 years ago

As we entered the town of Highwood, population 176, we saw a guy moving cattle across the road using an ATV and 2 herding dogs. Gay was at the back of the line of cattle and I'm pretty sure he helped the process by saying something like, "C'mon you damn cows! Move awn over!" We were happy to see this mini cattle drive because Sunday morning in Highwood was absent of activity. We sat on a bench at the closed service station for a couple of minutes and I took a picture of the guys in front of the Highwood Mountaineers charter bus that was parked there.

They have their own athletic tour bus
Heart 3 Comment 2
Andrea BrownKeep in mind that students come into town for school from ranches as far as 60-70 miles away. They start 'em driving at 14 out there.
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2 years ago
Ron SuchanekTo Andrea BrownYes it's interesting how some of the schools join to make teams because of low.atudent populations in individual schools or towns. And, as you know, they don't out towns too close together out here.
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2 years ago
Heart 5 Comment 0

A school teacher in Geraldine said that the students there join the Highwood students for athletic activities. They travel 46 miles back and forth between the towns for practices and games. I guess that's what the charter bus is for, but how many high school students could there be in a town of 176? Maybe their families travel with them?

Our  snack  breaks on the remainder of the 49-mile hilly route were brisk and no-nonsense to avoid roving swarms of mosquitoes. So when we arrived in Great Falls I was hangry. We stopped at Subway and Ron and I both ordered the highest-calorie item on the menu, the foot-long egg/sausage/cheese breakfast sandwich. 1,040 calories each. It tasted OK, but felt like a load of bricks in the stomach.

It looked better than it was
Heart 3 Comment 2
Steve Miller/GrampiesSince it looks really awful it must have tasted like s**t.
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2 years ago
Ron SuchanekTo Steve Miller/GrampiesHhaha! I hadn't thought about that. It was mediocre at best. I should have gone with my first choice, Black Forest ham.
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2 years ago

With brick-laden bellies we pedaled a short distance to our campground, the Great Falls KOA. We were all shocked and dismayed by the price to pitch our tents .. $43 for a shared site plus $15 for an "extra" person; a total of $62 with tax. That's some pricey kamping!! I tried to convince them that I'm 12 years old but they wouldn't believe me.

To KOA's credit, the sites were shady and had covered picnic tables and privacy fences. And they had multiple private bathrooms that were very clean and had showers with excellent water pressure. Still ... $62 for a kampsite??

After we got situated (like Ron's sister Dee Ann likes to do), we walked over to Walmart to get supper fixins. Spinach, bell pepper, apple, chick peas, and almonds for a salad. And a couple of chicken breasts and some garlic/herb bread with sharp cheddar cheese. Our kamping neighbor, Anthony, and his family, invited us over for s'mores for dessert. It was the kids' first KOA trip their excitement about the experience was very cute!

KOA opulence
Heart 6 Comment 4
Li LaAll the camping probably confirm for you that you can live in a little house (tuff shed style) which is the craze here in Portland. Be safe on the road.
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2 years ago
Ron SuchanekTo Li LaThat would be luxury!!!! You have room in your backyard, right?
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2 years ago
Dee ForteThis is nice!! And getting "situated" is very important.
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2 years ago
Jen GrumbyTo Dee ForteYes! Getting situated is always amongst the 1st things I like to do when we arrive wherever we stay.
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2 years ago
Cycle hoosiers getting comfortable
Heart 5 Comment 0

And then it was time for bed. Tomorrow we go to Simms. 

Today's ride: 51 miles (82 km)
Total: 1,226 miles (1,973 km)

Rate this entry's writing Heart 6
Comment on this entry Comment 4
Scott AndersonGreat Falls! You’re only a few days from the mountains. How are those climbing muscles coming along?
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2 years ago
Ron SuchanekI am still pretty slow but climb pretty comfortably at my own pace. Jen is faster, and over all we are both feeling pretty good.
And wait until the entry for today is posted ..... Rogers Pass and more FHWs. Holy crap, where's the Tylenol?
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2 years ago
James Fitch$62 for KOA?! I was so outrageous that I asked Google for motel rates in Great Falls. The Super 8, with free breakfast, was $63.
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2 years ago
Jen GrumbyTo James FitchNOW you tell me?
Yeah that is ridiculous price for a dirt floor. The main advantage to the KOA was proximity to the route. And free sugar cookies.
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2 years ago