Day 23: Big Sky, Bozeman & Three Forks

The vet gave Tako the thumbs up; his cough is basically a puppy cold. But that means that he’s more susceptible to the kennel cough that’s running rampant in the valleys right now, so the vet gave us some meds to boost his immune system.

Since other dogs will be at the Alpine house — and their owner wasn’t comfortable having Tako around if he’s sick — we’re having to reroute and miss Tiffany’s fam. I’m really disappointed to miss her. I love that lady!

On the bright side, that means we’ll have time to hit Yellowstone twice! The Grand Loop takes so long that two days is really the minimum you need to see Yellowstone by car.

Someone told me I had to try caramel rolls while I was in Montana. I consulted the Googs on where the best place was, and it directed me to Wheat Montana Farm & Bakery, which happened to be 3 miles from my first planned stop! Kismet.

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Wheat Montana is pretty cool, by the way. They’re family-owned and completely farm to table, which is pretty impressive for a multi-store franchise that spans western Montana.

Caramel rolls are divine. They’re like the cinnamon rolls we know and love in California, but instead of icing, they’re coated in caramel sauce. There are no words.

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Sexy caramel roll photo shoot.

My first stop was to the Bleu Horses installation just outside of Three Forks, MT. It’s 39* horses, painted with blue and white stripes to give them depth, lazing around up on a ridge overlooking the highway. And from a distance they look incredibly realistic. They really did remind me of Grandfather Cuts Loose the Ponies.

Unfortunately, a few years ago, three of the sculptures were stolen.

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jimdolanart.com / bleuhorses.com

Now the installation is fenced off, and this was as close as I could get.

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A Google image search gives you a ton of close-ups though; go here.

At the turnout where you can view Bleu Horses, I ran into a couple of women who asked if I was a local. I said no, but we got to chatting about some other things, and how much we all like Jim Dolan’s sculptures. (Remember the Three Buck Truck at Red Ants Pants? That’s one of Dolan’s pieces, too!) They tipped me off to another Jim Dolan sculpture nearby at the Sacajawea Hotel. So Tako and I drove over there, and discovered that Three Forks has a totally cute downtown.

After that, I decided to head back to Big Sky. Did I mention how beautiful that area is?

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And how quirky?

Their laundromat is a bar. And those boot brushes are outside every storefront.

I spent most of the afternoon and evening with Whit, our AirBnB host, who showed me around Big Sky and introduced me to a few locals.

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We wound up playing croquet with these two.

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All in all, it was a glorious day that ended pretty early for me. I caught up on a ton of sleep, thank goodness.

I can definitely see why Burke likes Big Sky so much. It’s gorgeous, super outdoor-oriented, and full of down-to-earth people. I’m really glad I stopped here!

By the way, thank you to everyone who offered up some playlists for the road! It’s been so fun going through them.

 

High

Running into the ladies who pointed me in a new direction. I love the unexpected.

 

Low

Not being able to get up close and personal with Bleu Horses. I toyed with the idea of climbing over the fence — it’s a very small fence — and hiking up there anyway, but it felt a bit disrespectful, so I ultimately decided not to.

 

Breakdown

Driven: 4213mi

Hiked: 43mi

Written: 4k

Listening to: “Turn” The Wombats

 

 

*I don’t know if that’s 39 before or after the 3 were stolen.


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