Marie kept us very busy when we were parked at the Lumberjack Saloon outside of Lolo, MT.
One day we went to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Visitor Center. They seem to have a dual purpose of conservation and hunting, which I didn't really get. But they are trying to increase elk habitat so there will be more elk.
When Lewis and Clark came through here 200 years ago, 10 million elk roamed through North America. The Expedition subsisted on elk for much of their journey, killing and eating at least 375 elk. By 1900, only 90,000 elk remained on the continent. Today, there are about one million elk.
Something Lewis and Clark would have liked. They got a little tired of elk meat by the end of their journey.
Another day we went to Lolo Hot Springs. Lewis and Clark stopped here on their way West, and again on their way home.
I don't think it looked exactly like this, though...
Another day, we went for a ride through the Bitterroots, on the Lolo Motorway, a historical road built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). It follows the old Indian trail that Lewis and Clark used.
Lightning requently ignites wildfires, and we went through lots of burned areas. I like them because you have a better view and more wildflowers.
But when Lewis and Clark passed through here, downed logs, dense shrubs, and a multitude of small trees made travel through the Bitterroot Mountains very difficult.
When we left the Lumberjack, we went west through Idaho on Highway 12. It's a spectacular drive.
I had heard a lot of praise for Jerry Johnson Hot Springs, so I couldn't wait to get there. It's about a mile hike through the woods to the spring.
There are several springs located in a small meadow. We got there just as a group of bikers was leaving. They are biking from Jackson, WY to Florence, OR.
The temperature was just right!
This pool was farther along the trail at an upper meadow.
And one of the springs was along the side of the river. What a fun experience!