Saturday, July 24, 2010

Day 8: Lewistown, Montana to Great Falls, Montana

Breakfast at the Calvert Hotel, quick car wash to remove the grasshopper swarm, and out to the site of the Spring Creek Coal Mine, where Sam Gebo once held sway. The creek is contaminated by PCBs and the fish are not good to eat, however this is now a rural wetland rather than a bustling mine and railyard. Photographed two old Datsun trucks by the side of the road.

Heading for Fort Benton we stop at the Shade Tree Cafe at Denton, very good second breakfast. We stop at Coffee Creek to photograph an old railcar parked in the middle of nowhere. At Geraldine we stop to see the railway station and grain elevators in the rain. At Fort Benton, the historic head of navigation on the Missouri river, we walk along the promenade past the Grand Union Hotel, built after the Civil War, and circle round to a thrift store. Annette is in Pyrex heaven - five lids.

On into Great Falls - the falls were dammed years ago - and I find myself in a Goodwill store listening to The Byrds' Mister Spaceman - after such an unpromising early life in suburban Surrey I felt like I'd finally arrived.
Quick shop at IGA, where Annette makes the dollars go farther, and supper in the hotel room at the Quality Inn downtown.
USAF planes frequently over fly Great Falls - Malmstrom base is nearby, - and mournful train whistles blow. You are in the west good and proper and Helena and Idaho are to follow.

No comments: