10.26.2011

Outlaw Run 2011: Medora, ND to Wibaux, MT





Wibaux, Montana
No mountains out here!
The same sky and land Custer saw in '76.
I had a rough idea in my head for the route over to Miles City. And as is the case from time to time what you see on a one dimensional map does not always translate well into the three dimensional world. The afternoon sunshine was playing peek-a-boo with gray afternoon clouds. Chugging along on the gray colored super-slab that is Interstate 90 Wyatt and I made our way carefully through the candy-corn orange construction barrels and the "Work Zone" signage. Eventually we ended up at the North Dakota Welcome Center on the North Dakota/Montana state line. We weaved our way through more construction on the off-ramp and carefully made our way to the welcome center. I'm not sure why we stopped but we did and ended up saving us some heartache. I decided that I needed to speak with the gal working the "Information" desk to see if she had any insight to the road that I wanted to use. After waiting patiently it was my turn. When I showed her the route that I wanted to use and told her that we were on motorcycles her eyes widened a bit as she recoiled from the map, "I ride motorcycle and you would not want to go that way!" Her tone did not have the smugness of a local that knows-it-all, but one of genuine concern. So, the bottom line was that the route was not anything special and consisted of unfriendly gravel roads; we would be better off getting back on '90 for a few miles before hitting our goal of Montana Highway 7. It was good advice!
A few short miles we were crossing over into Montana and exiting off of '90 and onto MT 7. A few minutes later we were entering the town of Wibaux located in Wibaux County. It would be a 45 mile straight shot south on MT 7 to Baker where we would turn west onto US12. Some of you may not realize this but roughly two-thirds of Montana consist of plains with little islands of sand tables and very little mountains. The Montana that most see on TV does not start in earnest until you get well past Billings. Our ride from Wibaux to Baker was very mellow; we were riding on gently sloping land that is dotted with buttes with names like, 'Baird Butte', 'Horse Point' and 'Shell Butte'. Montana 7 parallels Beaver Creek almost all the way to Fallon County. MT 7 is well kept and a real pleasure to ride. I was starting to really zone out but some ranchers were bailing hay so I decided to stop just so I could see just how they make those huge round hay rolls. Very interesting it is! Wyatt and I continued on '7 over into Fallon County. Back in 1876 Custer rolled through here on his way to Little Bighorn...Outside of Baker I started to see and smell the oil and the closer we got the more industrial the landscape looked... 

2 comments:

  1. Enjoyed your pics from the road and read all your words, too. I'm no biker and am one of those crazy drivers in cars. But I've covered a lot of this same country and it's my favorite part of the world. Thanks.

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  2. Ron,
    Thank you for stopping by!
    I'm thrilled that you liked the post! I really enjoy your blog and find it very interesting! I can be a little loco on my iron stead LOL!

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