Outlaw Run 2011: Good Advice

After we broke camp, loaded our steads we rode back onto US 12. About a mile later we were back in Bowman. Part of my normal ritual is to get a big cup of coffee before putting down some serious miles. We stopped at the Kum 'n' Go gas station for some java. I have gotten into the habit of making small talk with the store clerks and usually they strike up the conversation as they are curious about where we are headed. We were fortunate enough to talk with Suzy. Suzy informed us that the highway 12 was unfit for cars let alone motorcycles between Bowman and Marmarth-I think the Little Missouri was over the banks but Suzy was very adament about how bad the highway was. Suzy recommended that we take US 85 north to I94 to reach Montana. Our goal was Miles City and US12 would have taken us directly there. Wyatt chimed in and asked where there was a good place for breakfast-and Suzy replied without hesitation,"The Trappers Kettle in Belfield." So now a plan "B" is being developed on the fly. As Wyatt and I are studying a AAA map of North Dakota were told by two separate customers to AVOID US12! They were very adamant about their advice and were not trying to be 'cute'. When I get good advice from the folks who live in the area I am smart enough to listen! Okay, this detour is actually going to be a great detour! Our new route is going to take us into the south unit of the Teddy Roosevelt National Park right into Medora where the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame is located! SWEET!EXCELLENT! I fold up the map and were rumble out onto US85 North. Shortly afterwards we are enveloped in thick pockets of wet fog. US 85 ebs and flows up and down through the green buttes and hills eventually leveling out just after the highest point in North Dakota, White Butte elevation 3,506 feet. The further north we push the fog starts to lift and the sun starts appearing. We roar pass cattle and oil rigs and drop into Belfield. Wyatt and I maneuver around Mad Max looking tractor-trailers as we locate a parking spot in the gray grit covered parking lot of the Trappers Kettle; we gingerly kick out our kickstands and carefully allow the weight of our steads to lock them in as we dismount.


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