Midwest Trip: June 19 – Day 1

Ready to roll

Ready to roll

We left home at 4:30 this morning, with the goal of reaching Moses Lake by breakfast (191 miles). It was dark for just a short while  before the sun started rising over the Cascade Mountains which made it difficult for the kids to sleep.

Sunrise over the Cascades

Sunrise over the Cascades

We had Denny’s for breakfast and were able to use the coupon I’d gotten for signing up online for their ‘club’: 20% off our entire bill. It was motivation enough for us to eat there! The most exciting part was when the Dept. of Corrections bus pulled up outside the window – gave us a little something to chat and giggle about, particularly when the driver came off the bus and ‘hid’ at the front for a smoke.

Breakfast at Denny\'s

Breakfast at Denny

It wasn’t long before we needed a potty stop and started looking for a Rest Area. Jordan got good at spotting those blue signs! This stop was at a pretty spot on Lake Sprague is Eastern Washington:

Sprague Lake Rest Area

Sprague Lake Rest Area

Our next stop was Spokane for gas, then we actually made it to Missoula, MT for lunch – albeit a late one. We lost an hour as we entered Mountain Time, and had the priviledge of crossing the Continental Divide. It was something that sounded familiar to Willie and I as significant but we couldn’t recall why. Thanks to one of the many tour and state books I’d brought we learned that along I-90 at 6,375 feet elevation, the Continental Divide is the point at which the rivers and streams on the west side all flow into the Pacific Ocean, and anything on the east side of the Divide flow into either the Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic Ocean. Traveling it made it so much more real. Particularly with a fisherman on board who is fascinated by water!

We then made it to Butte for our next gas stop, and as the sun was setting we ran across Prairie Dog Town. We had been told about this spot by our friends, The Hunters, and despite the late hour we pulled off I-90 and followed the brown signs to a field filled with mounds, holes, and little prairie dogs all over the place. It was amazing! We opened the sliding door (side windows would have been easier!) and slowly drove along the road, oohing and ahhing all the way. We even saw a couple bunnies before all was done.

Prairie Dog Town in Central Montana
Prairie Dog Town in Central Montana
Prairie dog comes close to retrieve a Wheat Thin
Prairie dog comes close to retrieve a Wheat Thin
A cute little bunny roadside in Prairie Dog Town

A cute little bunny roadside in Prairie Dog Town

Once we finished at Priarie Dog Town, there were only a few more miles before we rolled into Billings and the Country Inn and Suites. It was a nice hotel with a nice, warm breakfast in the morning. Everyone was tired when we finally got to our room after about 850 miles on the road for our first day. I don’t even remember if we swam that night!
End of Day 1 - Bekah & Jordan tuckered out

End of Day 1 - Bekah & Jordan tuckered out

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