Saturday, July 21, 2018

June 2018 - Rappelling, Exploring, New Granddaughter, Sedated Grizzly Bear ...

It's been a busy spring here.  Fortunately it began and stayed wetter than last summer so the fire danger has at least been delayed a bit.

This little guy lives in the neighborhood.  He's been spotted several times.  Don't know if mom's around or not.  He is big enough to fend for himself if need be.

We ordered a small battery operated chain saw for trimming up the trees.  It wouldn't be much use for cutting a winter's supply of firewood but it works great for cutting the low-hanging limbs off the trees around the cabin.

We've been thinking about doing some rappelling. These are some climbing cliffs on the highway on the west side of Lake Koocanusa.  This is a "close up" of the person hanging on the cliffs above.

This is taken from the same spot without telephoto.  Yep, that's the cliff way up at the top of the photo. 
This is one of the rock walls near the highway.  There's a climber on it too!  This area is so popular that the highway department or Forest Service or some other organization set up a porta-pot for climbers to use.  A local climbing club installed anchors in the cliffs and at the tops of the most popular climbing cliffs which makes it much easier and ultimately saves the cliffs since people won't be pounding in their own all over the walls.

This was taken at the top of the cliffs in the photos above.  We used the trail to get up there though.  That's Lake Koocanusa below.  It was a windy day and the waves on the lake were impressive.  Normally it's placid and a deep blue in color.

Scott has been wanting to try some rappelling off of cliffs.  (He learned doing it down the side of our camper van.) so we found a location with a little more modest walls to try out first.

And ... over the top he goes!

And he obviously hates it!  Haha!  He climbed back up the wall (barefoot!) three more times before calling it an evening.  I only had to assist him once on the first climb.  (I was on top manning the safety rope.)

What can I say ... it's northwestern Montana!

The batteries in my GPS went dead and really corroded the battery compartment on my unit.  I found out that they clean up well with just soapy water and a toothbrush.  I love my GPS.  It gives me a lot more freedom to roam.  A compass is good and a map is good but our timber is tall and thick.  You can seldom see anything except trees ... no landmarks.  Even climbing to the top seldom helps because the trees are tall and thick there as well.  So I use the GPS to get a compass heading back to home or camp then use the compass to point the way.

There are lots of turkeys this year.  This guy was still trying to impress the hens tagging along.

I parked the car in it's usual spot then I noticed a couple of days later that the tire was flat.

When I got it off I noticed that the inside of the outer tread had been kind of ground off.  I have no idea how that happened.  It isn't alignment nor is it rubbing anywhere on the wheel well.  The good thing is that the new tires seem to be doing well on it.

Scott over playing with his brothers. Sand is always a good "toy" when kids are involved!

Out on our 4-wheelers doing some exploring.  We visited some areas where I used to get a lot of my firewood then we tried out a few more roads.  A lot of the roads are gated most of the year but some are opened up at certain times in the spring and summer.

Our neighborhood is in the valley below. 

An old clear cut. 
We spotted this rig for sale along the highway.  Our motor home is showing it's age so we've been kind of looking around a bit for a replacement.  We never looked at 5th wheels for various reasons, one of which was that we didn't have a truck to pull it with.  This guy was selling the truck and trailer together.  We bought it.  I swore I'd never own a 5th wheel camper or a rig with slide-outs or a diesel pickup.  Now I have all three.  It is a nice rig though and all set up and ready to hit the road.  Getting it home up our "road" was an adventure I hope to never do again!  We're getting it all set up for winter.  (More about that in the July blog.) We'll take it down south with us and leave it there in storage next summer. It's got us antsy to hit the road!

That's our son in the white T-shirt.  This is a grizzly that the FWP trapped and tranquilized at the golf course where he works.  It's getting radio collared and moved to a new location.  Saw a video on You Tube where they tried releasing a different grizzly from a culvert trap.  The bear was a bit angry and went directly for the game warden on top of the trap.  He had to shoot it with his sidearm to stop the attack.  It all happened rather quickly!  Usually they run away ... usually!

Scott holding his new baby sister at the hospital.  She has three older brothers to watch out for her.

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