April 2, 2014

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Last month E went to the Museum of the Rockies for a scouting day event (she's a Daisy). One project involved cutting pictures out of old magazines for a collaborative collage showing nature and things that can be recycled or reused. 

Since she's aware of the fact that Ludwig is quite old for a vehicle ("older than Daddy!") that gets used, naturally she used a picture of a bay window bus for her contribution to the 'reusable' category.

March 23, 2014

Ludwig Springs into Action

"Springs" is probably too strong a verb, but it is Spring. We took him to Missoula.

I can't drive but still, I would like to. 

 And I won't get out!


Doubters: it is possible to fit two--and I'm certain three--car seats in a full-bench Westy. More proof that '74 and '75 Westfalias are the best of the bunch.


Melissa drove there and back. 

March 20, 2014

Stinkerton, Ludwig. Ludwig, Stinkerton.

The other day our younger daughter got to ride in Ludwig for the first time.

 (Maybe I need a better internet name for her than "Stinkerton".)

View Stinkerton's First Ride in Ludwig in a larger map

March 13, 2014

Rerun: Fish Creek Road (Aug 2007)

Circumstances will soon allow us to take that long-promised picture of Stinkerton in Ludwig, I promise. In the meantime here's a rerun of a pre-kids post from August of 2007, new! and improved!! with a map. Also, I have no idea why the picture of Ludwig next to the bloated Eurovan is so pixellated.

My parents, one brother, and a niece came to visit us a couple weeks ago for a week. One day during their stay my dad and I hopped in Ludwig and headed down I-90 to see the largest (known) pine tree in Montana.

I-90 Westbound

We took the wrong exit and strolled around the banks of the Clark Fork River (full name: Clark's Fork of the Columbia) for a bit.

Back on track, we found the monster Ponderosa. It's located just a bit off the interstate at the Big Pine Fishing Access Site & Campground. Standing just shy of 200 feet, the 335 year-old Ponderosa would probably seem a bit of a yawn to readers who've seen Sequoias and other Redwoods in situ, but we native flatlanders were duly impressed. Say what you like: it's a damn big tree.

You could make two normal-sized houses with the wood from this tree (really).

The tree sits right next to Fish Creek, which is apparently a decent fly fishing stream. These guys are serious. (I prefer ice fishing, myself.)

Just for the fun of it, we decided to follow Fish Creek Road up into the mountains, to where it eventually meets
US 12. The road twisted pleasantly through meadows, pine forest, and deciduous forest, and past talus piles, never straying far from the creek--except for the final three miles, where it climbed up and over into the Lolo Creek watershed. Ludwig was happy to let us bounce along at a restful 25-30mph and enjoy the Bitterroots.

When we got to the highway, I turned East to head back to Missoula via Lolo. A few seconds later we passed milemarker 7, meaning that the state line was not quite ten minutes behind us. We weren't on any serious kind of schedule, so I asked Dad if we should turn around and head to Idaho. He was game--I don't think he'd ever been to
the Gem State.

Now he has.

At the vistors' center straddling the border, we parked next to this monstrous VW Eurovan. A lot more than just 30 years of technology separate Ludwig from this behemoth.
Something I found strange was that the visitor's center was clearly marked "5225 feet", yet I've got maps telling me the pass is at 5233' and 5235'. In any case, I erred on the side of caution when listing Lolo Pass on the list of mountain passes Ludwig has traversed.

Heading back into Montana, we stopped for a picture of this kind-of-balancing rock along the highway. The water is Lolo Creek.

This Summer has been exceedingly hot in Western Montana, but there were still a few pockets of snow up on Lolo Peak (9096') in late July.

All in all, it was a great jaunt through a chunk of the Bitterroots that I'd definitely visit again. Thanks to Dad for being a good sport, and for taking many of the pictures seen here.

View Fish Creek Road Aug 2007 in a larger map

March 5, 2014

The Last Best

somewhere in Montana