S: Lone Mountain Ranch
FC: Lone Mountain Ranch
1: We headed for Lone Mountain Ranch in Big Sky Montana on September 17, 2011. The entire family came to the airport to see us off. FUN!
2: The Dining Room
3: Our cabin was the Bitteroot (Montana State Flower) | We realized that we did not get a key when we checked in. He said, "well, we can try to find it but I haven't handed one out in a couple of years". Funny.
4: Our first adventure in fly fishin'. | Our guide was Rick Reed. Thankfully he was a patient (and funny) man.
5: Fortunately the bottom of our boots were covered in felt because we had to cross the river, which was waist deep on Jeff, and we needed the traction! | Sunday, Day 1 The Gallatin River
6: We first had to learn about nymph fishing. Nymph fishing is replicating a trouts food source in the larvae stage. Yep, didn't help me much either.
7: I only made the mistake of calling it a "pole" one time. Rick quickly corrected me indicating that it was a "rod."
8: Good times!
9: Rainbow Trout
11: This picture just makes us laugh. It looks like a "Wheres Waldo" attempt.
12: SET! That meant you have a fish on your line.
13: Whew. Jeff was still going. I was worn out!
15: Day | Day 1 Hiking around the ranch View of Lone Mountain
17: More of the ranch
18: Jeff, and his horse for the week; Miss Betty | I rode Strawberry
19: Day 1 Horseback Riding | Lisa Marie was our horse wrangler on this trip.
20: Day 2, hiking at the ranch with Chris | Our heat apparently was not working last night. When we woke up it was 22 degrees INSIDE. Brrr.
22: Day 3 Hiking Beehive | Beehive was a 6 mile hike. It took us 2 hours to get to the top and 1 to get down. It was a very aggressive hike. | We huffed and puffed getting up there. On the last night we found out we were the only guests to make it to the top all summer. I was more than a little relieved. | The top of this mountain is where we are headed
23: Quote of the day "no gawkin' while you're walkin'!"
24: We saw our first glimpse of wildlife today. We saw a pika.
27: The view from the top!
28: The food here was amazing! This evening we had an artichoke and shrimp with greens for an appetizer, steak, mashed potatoes and asparagus as well as chocolate lava cake and ice cream. Its a good thing we exercised A LOT today!
29: I love the leaves, I do not know why. Is it their colors or how they fly? They crunch and crinkle Under my feet; I pile them up And take a leap! | I love the leaves, I do not know why. Is it their colors or how they fly? They crunch and crinkle Under my feet; I pile them up And take a leap! | After the hike up Beehive we were walking to the dining room. There were about 10 steps up. We both simultaneously stopped, looked up the steps and sighed. We were cracking up because neither one of us thought we could make another ascent.
30: Day 3 September 21, 2011 Horseback riding in Yellowstone National Park
32: It was a beautiful day! We started out very bundled since it was 30 degrees. We rode about 4 hours. When we got back it was in the 60's. We stopped and had a picnic for lunch. It was a wonderful day! Tiny was our wrangler today.
34: Day 4 was a guided bus tour of Yellowstone National Park. Randy was our fearless leader on this trip. We crossed into Wyoming and entered the West gate. | I called shotgun to ensure less likelihood of car sickness. I was also the official wildlife spotter
35: We wanted so badly to see a moose. Our friends on the bus laughed at me when I yelled "Theres a moose like creature." It was an elk. | Bison | We got to hear the elk bugling.
36: More Adventures in Yellowstone...... | Can you see the elk in the picture to the left? We wouldn't have seen it either if we hadn't heard it bugling. It was so neat!!
37: A Wyoming Traffic Jam | When white men came to the area they had never seen Bison. The only thing they could compare it to was the African Water Buffalo; thus the nickname of Buffalo
39: The state of Montana was formed in 1889 | Yellowstone Park was created in 1872 by President Grant.
40: We stopped for a picnic lunch with our new friends. Randy (far left) was our guide. Laura is next to Randy and then Norm. His wife Sue is across from Laura. Melissa and Janet are next to Sue. | There are 1k to 3k earthquakes per year in Yellowstone. The earth breathes fissures where steam escapes. There are an amazing amount of hot pools, mud pots and geysers in the park. Most of these smell horribly of sulfur.
42: Old faithful is obviously a geyser. It was interesting how quiet and almost reverent the large crowd was while waiting for Old Faithful to spew. | Our new friends Janet and Melissa Cornfeld. They are mother and daughter traveling together. Janet is from DC and Melissa is from New York City. They were lots of fun! | Old Faithful
44: Old Faithful Inn
47: I love the leaves, I do not know why. Is it their colors or how they fly? They crunch and crinkle Under my feet; I pile them up And take a leap! | I love the leaves, I do not know why. Is it their colors or how they fly? They crunch and crinkle Under my feet; I pile them up And take a leap!
48: Day 5: Fly Fishing on the Yellowstone with Rick Reed
50: Jeff had a great day. He caught some rainbow, white fish and a big cut throat trout......
51: ....he also almost filled his weighters up with water when he stumbled in the river.
52: These two were quite the comedians. Having never fly fished before Rick was yelling out orders; Jeff mend, Judy re-cast, then he says.....Judy raise your right hand in the air. Being the rules follower that I am I put my rod in my left hand and raised my right hand. I think Rick was part exasperated and part entertained. He meant for me to "set".......why didn't he just say that? | Done with fishin' and enjoying the ride
53: Jeff said the funniest part was the look that Rick gave him.
54: Day 6 | Hangin' at the Ranch | Lisa Marie took us riding today. She also helped us finally see a moose! We were at our cabin and she came running up and when I opened the door she yelled "there's a moose, hurry"
56: Day 6 | Fortunately this guy was stuffed and not moving
57: Lets just say its more slippery than it looks.
58: Autumn Leaves Are Falling Down | The Rest of Day 6: Horseback riding to the Mountain View
60: Tonight was Laura's 40th birthday. She was traveling by herself and we made fast friends. She ate most of her meals with us. On this evening we asked some of the staff to join us for dinner. It was a ball. We laughed and laughed. One of the funniest stories was that in the winter when you go to Wal Mart no one turns off their cars. There are about 75 cars with keys in the ignition and running. Cracked us up.
61: Randy | Laura | Lisa Marie | Patrick | PJ | Elise | Patrick
64: To our friends at the ranch: Wow....what an amazing vacation! Thank you for making us feel so welcome. It truly could not have been better; from beginning to end. The people were incredible, the food was incredible and the weather and new adventures were incredible. This was our first visit and we are already dreaming about our next one. This was just what we needed! This is truly a special place. We feel like we left with new friends. Thank you for sharing it so generously with us!