Sunday, August 12, 2001

Hello from Glasgow, Montana!

Special note:  Today marks my being on the road for one month!  I began this journey on July 12, and have had an incredible month!

Start time:  0730

Start odometer: 7077

Weather: Sunny day

Another community based on agriculture, Glasgow has a population of about 11,000.  I find myself here due to the suggestions of the tour guides at a dam I visited today.  

I began this morning by continuing my conversation with the owner of the motel.  He told me more stories of the town, including a flood they experienced several years ago.  We also talked about his aircraft, and planned modifications and upgrades of the airfield.  I had a great stay in Culbertson, and the lodging was about the best I have had on this trip for the price.

On my way out of town, I drove by the airport to look at the aircraft owned by the gentleman running the hotel.  I wanted to see the pink spinner he mentioned on his Taylorcraft, which was rather unique.

I drove north on Route 16, heading for the town of Plentywood, Mt.  In one of my travel books there is mention of a farm to be seen in this town.  After driving through several small towns including Froid, I arrived in Plentywood, where I stopped at a gas station for directions.  This was followed by a search for the farm west of town.  I was looking for Dot and Lin's Farm of Exotic Animals!  Unfortunately there were no signs, as road construction and widening had made quite a mess of the area.  Finally, as I was driving down the road, I noticed some very small ponies, so I turned up the quarter mile long driveway.  I tried knocking on the four entrance doors to the house, but did not get an answer.  As I was walking back to my car, I noticed two people working on the other side of the barn.  I was able to get their attention, and they invited me into their field.  I met Dot, and she showed me around the farm, and we walked among the miniature horses.  This was an interesting place, and Dot told me of their breeding, showing, and selling of miniature horses.  There are two classes, Class A being a height of less than 34 inches, and Class B, being 34 to 38 inches tall.  It was neat watching these horses.  I asked Dot about the goats mentioned in the book I have, and she said they had sold all of them to someone in Michigan.  They were "fainting" goats, a small sized breed that when startled, would stiffen up, then fall over!  Dot and Lin had only planned on keeping them for three years, so they were gone before I even knew about them.  It would have been interesting to see them, though.

I continued west on Montana Route 5, then south back to US 2.  On the way, I saw a sign for a historical site.  I turned onto the short dirt road that lead to the display, and all of a sudden, grasshoppers started jumping on my car!  I immediately closed my windows and sunroof, hoping none got in beforehand.  I proceeded up the road, and counted at least 30 grasshoppers on the car!  It was good to return to the road, where I could go the 70 mile an hour speed limit (on the two lane road) to blow most of them off.  Even after a half hour drive, I still had about 10 left on the car!  

I forgot to mention yesterday that on certain portions of the the road, there will be a couple mile section of highway covered in grasshoppers.  As you drive, many of the grasshoppers jump and hit the car, and because there are so many, it sounds like heavy raindrops are hitting the car!  I went  to a car wash today to spray off some of the mess, but it will take a bit of scrubbing when the trip is complete.

I stopped for lunch in Nashua, as this was a turn to the south that lead to my next stop, Fort Peck Dam.  This is the world's largest hydraulic earth dam, built in the 1930's.  It is used to generate power, provide flood control, and created a lake that is 16 miles long.  As you drive atop the 4 mile long dam, the view is beautiful!  I stopped at the power plant visitor center, where displays of the building of the dam were presented.  I also took a tour, and our guide Carie was very knowledgeable and answered my many questions.  It was very interesting to see the place, as we were taken though many areas.  A curious event occurred when we entered the first room, which held the power creating portion of the generators, my digital camera failed.  After taking a picture from a distance, I approached the generators, and we were invited to touch them to feel the vibration and the heat.  I attempted to use my camera from the close range, it showed that it was turned on, but it stopped functioning.  I was unable to turn it off!  Removing the battery finally shut it off.  After we left the room, I turned the camera back on, and it worked as expected.  Of the many interesting facets of the tour, one exciting part was when we were able to see the shafts that were being turned by the water and creating electricity, and being able to actually feel the shaft as it spun.  During the tour, we were able to see all parts of the plant, and I found it interesting and educational.

At the suggestion of the tour guide and another staff member, I ended up in Glasgow, and had dinner at Eugene's Pizza, which was delicious.

Click on picture for larger image, hit back button to return to this page.

Donkeys on the farm.

Miniature horses.

This is Dot.  Sorry I missed the sleeping goats, but thanks for letting me visit the farm!

Many signs were along the Montana roads.  This one describes Wood Mountain Trail.

Wolf Point, passed by the Lewis and Clark expedition.

A sad story about smallpox in the area, and how it devastated several tribes.

This sign describes Old Peck Fort.

The road long the top of Fort Peck Dam.  Note the bug marks on my windshield!

Looking back along the road I just traveled.  You can see the towers in Fort Peck Lake that are part of the power plant.

This is a look slightly to the left of the previous picture, looking west.

This picture is from the same spot as the previous one, looking southeast.

This panel describes the spillway in the next picture.

The Fort Peck Dam Spillway.

An overview of Fort Peck Lake and Dam.

Diversion tunnel information.

A landslide occurred during the construction of the dam, and eight men lost their lives.

In memory of the lost workers.

A view of the generating facility.

A large tank in this tower holds water when the water flow is stopped.  This allows for reduced pressure due to the long tunnels that bring to water to the plant.

My car in the parking lot.

The tops of the generators.

This is the shaft that leads from the turbine below to the generator above.  We were allowed to feel the shaft as it was being turned by the flowing water.

Spare turbine guide bearing.

This panel describes the bearings in the generators.

Bearing parts

This is the water release area.

Another view of where the water exits the plant.

Our tour guide, Carie.

Another area of the plant with older generators.

Looking up at a tank in the tower.

Power transformers and station.

The tower from the east side.

Eugene's Pizza

A closer look at Eugene's.

 

 

 

Tomorrow I hope to get to Glacier National Park.  Thanks for checking in!

 

Routes traveled today: US 2 - Mt 16 - Mt 5 - Mt 13 - US 2 - Mt 117 - Mt 24 - US 2

Hotel: Star Lodge Motel -

 

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Copyright 2001 Igor N. Nikishin

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