Saturday, July 10 we finished winding our way through Yellowstone, which included a stop at Old Faithful to watch her erupt. It was incredible to see in real time how high up it shot. We meandered along and stopped at other geysers along the way. The array of minerals produces the most brilliant blues, yellows, pale greens, and oranges we have ever seen. We slowly walked the boardwalk over one such geyser field, allowing us a view right through the middle as we crossed.
Leaving Yellowstone, we headed north toward the National Glacier Park. Unlike the barren lands of Wyoming and New Mexico, the vast open range of Montana encompassed fields of deep greens, bright yellows, and warm golds. Cattle spotted the landscape for miles, reminding the observant traveler the heartbeat of life was carrying on even in the quiet.
Just south of the Glacier Park we stopped in Helena for the night, settling on a Howard Johnson's for $172. It seems the entire west coast thinks 'cheap' hotel is anything under $200.
We entered our room to discover humidity checked in before our arrival and the a/c unit was throwing out hot air. Maintenance brought us a fan and took a look. As he pulled the filter a giant cloud of dust was released into the room, coating everything nearby with a nasty film. He cleaned it and left. An hour later the temperature had only risen, so we told the manager we would need to check out, as they were fully booked.
While gathering our luggage from the room, she called to tell us that another guest had volunteered to switch rooms with us, as he wouldn't need it until after midnight and a fan would be enough for him. She also invited us to the hotel bar to buy us a drink and watch the UFC fight, as a local boy was fighting.
We walked down to the Overland Restaurant and Lounge for supper. We split a delicious NY Strip sandwich and fries before heading back to our room, which came with a brand-new a/c unit making sleeping cool and comfortable. We want to give our waitress Kendall, a shout out and recommend you stop in and check the service and food out the next time you find yourself out on the winding road.