I took highway 200, the Big Sky Back Country byway. It was. The drive was quite enjoyable, hardly any traffic, with an interesting variety of scenery. Here's what I saw leaving Choteau:
Cowboy with lasso sculpture
It clouded up later in the day, but you can see the area is appropriately named:
Big Sky country
I had looked online the day before for places to camp, and it was slim pickin's on the eastern side of Montana. There's a state park called Hell Creek, but it was up a 25-mile gravel road (my maps program said it would take an hour). Didn't appeal to me. Then I found a free campground run by the Kiwanis Club in Lewistown. We decided we'd head there and check it out. The reviews said it was basic but clean…They were right.
I liked it. But we got there about 12:30 and though I sometimes like to just hang out with Theo in Mac for an afternoon, I had just done that in the rain the day before, and there wasn't much to do here, plus did I mention that it was very windy? So we rested and had lunch and got online to see what we could find further down the highway. Besides, I was getting such great gas mileage with that wind, I figured I should take advantage.
lunching at the Kiwanis rest stop
I decided I'd have to go with a private RV park again. I called one that I found and a teen-age girl answered the phone with a "hullo?" I asked if this was the Hilltop Campground. "Yes." Me: "Are you open?" Her: "umm, I think so. Hold on, let me get my dad for you…" (then I hear a bunch of noise - probably wind!) - then she came back to the phone and said she couldn't find him, could she take my number and have him call back…OK.
Hmmm…not an auspicious start! So I called the other one in Mosby. Also got a young girl "hullo." But upon my request this one got dad right away. I asked if they were open. Yes. How much? $25 for full hook-up. "Sounds good - might see you in a bit." Hung up. OK, so we headed to Mosby, another 75 miles or so. More beautiful scenery along the way.
Well, Mosby consisted of just a few houses and I almost missed the RV park, but when I saw it I saw a hand-painted sign on a piece of old plywood that said "RV Park" and a bunch of run down buildings and one camper… I continued up the hill to a brand new rest stop to consider my options. Then I found there was zero phone reception. Hmmm..
Let's just say I wasn't "feeling the love" for the Mosby spot…Then a UPS guy came in and I asked him if he knew if the next town, Jordan, had diesel and had camping? He said yes to the first question and didn't know to the second one. OK, I decided to continue on, I was enjoying the drive, we were both rested and besides, there's that gas mileage : )
Jordan was another 60 miles or so. The hills became like long gentle roller coasters… then we came upon a beautiful sage brush prairie. The sage brush looked more blue than the photo shows it.
So I drove a block to the K & K RV park.
The office, which looked like it was in the mobile home of the family that owned the park, had a little neon sign saying it was Open. I drove up and a nice man came out and I asked if he had a spot for the night. Yes, $25 for full hook-ups. Great! I paid up. He pointed out the shower house to me:
Hmmm, I think I'll be sticking with the shower in Mac…
It turned out to be just fine. There were a couple other campers there, I have great internet reception, and there's a cute little park across the street with cottonwood trees, and a new hospital next door…but I did lock my doors just to be sure.
Theo likes the Cottonwoods
Incidentally, just after I arrived I was walking Theo across the street to the park and my phone rang. I answered it and it was a lady with the Mosby campground. She asked when they should expect me, I said since I didn't get a all back I decided to continue on to Jordan… She replied "No call back? My husband was expecting you." I apologized and explained that I thought she was the other campground… She seemed rather put out and said "Well, thanks for letting us know."
Gee! I didn't realize I had committed myself! : ) It was rather strange…and I never got a call back from the other place, of course.
So today we continue eastward. Looks like the west wind is picking up : )