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HooDoo Coulee to Marias River, MT
mini location map2017-08-07
41 by photographer avatartibber
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HooDoo Coulee to Marias River, MT 
HooDoo Coulee to Marias River, MT
Hiking avatar Aug 07 2017
Hiking2.00 Miles 272 AEG
Hiking2.00 Miles   1 Hour   25 Mns   1.56 mph
272 ft AEG      8 Mns Break
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Finally my trip to Montana began. We arrived in Gt Falls and picked up our rental... a Range Rover. Was supposed to be an intermediate car but this is all they had in that range, same price. Okay, we'll take it. However, this vehicle turned out to be a continual challenge and the back seats do not fold completely flat. A fellow Montanan even tried to help us figure it out at the airport but the seats just would not lay flat or we could never figure out how to make that happen. No big deal and off we went as Wendy read the manual on how to drive this thing. The shifter took us awhile to get the hang of but by the second week, we got it figured out :lol: .

You will have to see the photoset to get a play by play of the time leading up to the hike and after but here was the agenda:
Montana Club for dinner.
WalMart for incidentals.
To the Ranch.
To my old place.
To the old Taylor place.
Back by my old place and to the ranch.

Hike of HooDoo Coulee. Cousin Brian drives us away from the ranch to Highway 223 between Fort Benton and Chester. He drive us toward the Meisner (Circle) Bridge and points to the coulee we should be coming down if we find our way okay. He drives across the bridge and drops us at the start of the coulee and says "just hike down this and it should get you to the river". "It should take about an hour but I can't remember exactly. You should come out by the river and then come up to the gravel pit."

So off we went with my cousin Connie and MuShu the pug in tow as well. It's a little steep and slippery getting down to the coulee but then you run into cattle/game trails to follow for most of the way. We did try to stay in the coulee rather than alongside it however, there were a couple of drop offs we had to negotiate around and some rumpaging involved. There are wonderful hoodoos along the way to keep you entertained until you get to the treed and bushed part of the coulee. It gets a little trickier here as you do have to crash thru some brush but eventually it opens up.

The trails get a little fainter here and you keep waiting to hit the river based on the projectory we were hiking and a sense of where we thot we should hit the river. Well you know when you're following vague directions and you think you should be somewhere, you start looking at alternatives. We decided to get higher to see what we could see. Well even once we got higher we couldn't see the river but found the old gravel pit. However, we headed to the west a little more and wha la, there was the river. We just needed to keep going and we would have rounded a couple more bends to be at the river.

Nonetheless, I liked our perspective from here anyway. So we followed the old road down to the river where we could see it had just done a huge bend and that's why we didn't get to it sooner than we thought. We enjoyed some time down here though Connie had kept going up another path and we thot was waiting for us at the gravel pit under some trees. After getting some pictures and enjoying the beauty of the river we headed back up the hill to the road thinking Connie had done the same. But my cousin Connie had instead went up and over the hill and down to the granaries where she had texted everyone to let them know. I didn't even think to look at my texts after we couldn't find her.

Her nephew must have seen her as he was coming in from Chester and had stopped to talk to his dad so he picked her up and took her to the ranch. Wendy and I piled in with Brian who was amused at how this all turned out. It was a great couple miles and we enjoyed it despite a crazy ending. Not sure he will ever drop us off again though :D .

Back to the Ranch. (spring harvest starts)
Over to the old Homestead. (kittens)
Family cookout. (hunt for beer)
Harvest sunset and Harvest moon.

Here is a link to the video that includes some of the pics from my photoset and of course some movies:
Great Falls and visit around the farms [ youtube video ]
Hoodoo Coulee hike [ youtube video ]
Throwing a Wendy
Named place
Named place
Marias River
For me, sometimes it's just as much about the journey as the destination.
Oh, and once in awhile, don't forget to look back at the trail you've traveled.
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