Friday, August 14, 2009

Lewis and Clark Trail

808 - 1234

Well, not all journeys go as planned. But while my itinerary today did not go as intended, it was the type of day I imagined for this adventure: most excellent.

Today I never touched the interstate, travelling north from Boise on Route 55 and then US 95 along the Salmon River, near Hell's Canyon. That brought me to the high plains, and then along the scenic Lewis and Clark Trail (US 12) to Montana. I knew I had a long way to go if I was to make The Tempest in Plains, Montana.

I just had to stop in Cottonwood, Idaho at the Dog Bark Park Inn. It is bed and breakfast that looks like a beagle. There I met the owner and builder, Dennis Sullivan, in his wood shop (named The Puppy Mill) where he makes wooden dog likeneses (his wife does the painting). Yes, I got a border collie, and ordered a beagle. I was greeted by Sprocket, his 7 month old golden, who was covered in sawdust. So, I got my puppy fix.

I spent a glorious hour sharing with Dennis. I got a full history of his building of "Sweet Willie," the beagle B&B (his crowning achievement was putting the plumbing in the tail), a slew of ideas on other places to see on my adventure, and his philosohy of life: namely do what you love.

Dennis was impressed with my journey and wondered if he could tag along. I told him "Then who would carve my beagle?" :-) What a treasured hour it was. He took my picture with Sweet Willie (that's me by the smaller beagle structure), and I took his with Sprocket.

The fire hydrant is a Port-O-Potty, and yes, I used it.

Few drives can compare with traveling Highway 12 along the wild and scenic Lochsa River. The two-lane highway winds through a narrow canyon between forest and river, with Lewis and Clark Trail interpretive signs along the route.

The journey was spectacular, but windy. Thus the "Winding Road Next 99 Miles " sign.

My adventure was being able to keep moving as I was on fumes when I finally hit a campground with a gas pump. Whew! Note to self: fill at a quarter tank.

This leg took quite awhile, so I missed the play, and chose to stay in Missoula for the night.

Tonight's beer: Bayern Amber, from the Bayern Brewery in Missoula, Montana. Excellent. They also make Dragon's Breath Dark Hefeweizen, and Face Plant Doppelweizen. I'm thinking those would have been interesting.

More spectacular scenery tomorrow as I go through Glacier National Park.


  1. Do you think Dennis could carve a boxer/pit bull mix?

    Sounds like a great day!

  2. Great story and photos Ted! Glacier National Park is the most beautiful place I have ever seen in my entire life. My mom was a maid in one of the hotels there, 60 years ago.

  3. Dennis does do a boxer. Check it out at

  4. Okay -- this is NOT working for me! I now get up every morning to check the blog, and this morning? Nuthin'!!! What's up with that? Surely you have something to report about Glacier! It's one of the top spots on Murray's list to go back to (he went 28 years ago!). So, come on!! Out with it!


  5. From Cheri: Glacier Park Lodge = deep in the wilderness, no Internet (gasp!) and only 1 bar on cell phone. And no Starbucks on the corner for back-up wifi.