Thursday, May 24, 2012

The road less travelled

The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;

Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference

We got off the beaten track a bit this week.  Travelling south down I-15 over the years we have seen the sign for “craters of the moon” but I have never paid much attention to it.  Evidently Marilyn has been more observant because she remembered it as soon as we came on the crater area a couple of days ago.  We could have stayed on I-84 into Twin Falls and then headed north up I-15 but Streets and Trips kindly pointed out that Idaho State 26, 22 and 33 would be shorter.  Now remember it wasn’t that many years ago that Streets and Trips conspired with my stubborn lunacy to get us stuck on a mountainside between Bryce Canyon and Flagstaff, so I didn’t immediately embrace the proposed shortcut.  After some further research though it appeared that the route was safe and since we weren’t in any particular hurry we meandered our way through the heart of Idaho on some very pleasant 2-lane highways.  And that’s how we came to “Craters of the Moon”.

It turns out there is a geologic flaw in the heart of Idaho that has allowed lava to flow out periodically over the last 16 or 20 millions years.  I believe that somehow this flaw is connected to what causes Old Faithful but I wasn’t paying that close attention to the multi-media presentation so I may have that wrong.  I’m sure Wikipedia will explain it better than I can if anybody really cares that much. 

As we headed east out of the moonscape we hit some miserable winds.  Fortunately they were behind us so we were likely getting exceptional mileage but they were also causing a lot of real estate to change hands.  As we got closer to the interstate I thought it would be wise to stop and let the wind die down a bit.  There were times when the visibility was seriously impaired because the local farmers seemed clueless about conservation tillage.  So we ended up having a 1-1/2 hour nap in the rest area beside the scale shack on the side of I-15.  The wind was still pretty bad when we left but it was starting to abate and by the time we got maybe a half hour up the interstate it was back more or less to normal. 

Last night we parked in Skip and Maria’s yard outside Helena and had a great visit with them, their granddaughters, their daughter and their daughter’s great dane.  I love that dog and it seemed happy to see us again too.  Its like a medium sized domesticated horse.  This morning we lounged around drinking coffee and eating Maria’s fresh cinnamon buns.  Then we headed north and crossed the border at Coutts around 3:30 this afternoon.  Tonight we’re in our favorite campground – camp Wallyworld – this time in Lethbridge.  Tomorrow we’ll take a leisurely run up to Airdrie and by Monday night we hope to be back in Saskatchewan with the Malibu in tow.

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