Friday, August 21, 2015

Smoke Chasers

Now we've done it.  We drove the 550 miles across Montana on I 90 in three days with two overnights at Walmart.  We thought we were running from the smoke, but it seems we were running with it instead.

We began at Lookout Pass on Montana's western border where it was pretty pleasant.  I think we were above it all.  When we were getting ready to leave, some motorcycles drove in, one of which was something we had never seen.  It's a Polaris Slingshot and I looked it up to find the retail price starts at $21,199.

We had a lovely drive down from the pass.

Although is anybody else confused by this?

But the rest of the 221 miles to the Walmart in Butte was smoky, sometimes more and sometimes less.

By the next day, I think we were beginning to accept it as normal.

We stopped for another Walmart night in Billings after 219 miles.  We could have stayed at Cabela's, but I was afraid of what I'd buy next.

After our final jump today of 119 miles, we're at a State Park in Ranchester, just over the state line in Wyoming.  We might stay here a couple of days.  Wind is predicted for tonight with rain tomorrow.  I'm hoping what smoke doesn't blow away, will get washed away.

I've been following a very interesting website which shows the fires and smoke.  The link is

This is the map from yesterday morning.  Our overnight spot was about where the arrow is.  Grim, huh?  But we figured if we kept heading east, we'd get out of it

Well, I didn't count on the smoke moving with us.  This is last night's map with our overnight in Billings marked.

And this morning we started south to our current spot at the arrow.

Pulling out on the map, look how the smoke has spread across the country. The darkest area goes into Wisconsin and the light gray extends all the way to Ohio.

Early this evening, Ron and I were commenting how much better it smelled and noticed the sky was actually blue.  Then just a few minutes ago, I realized I was smelling smoke again.  Wouldn't you know that the only other person in this whole campground has a fire going?  Luckily he's all the way on the other side.


  1. And that's where we are headed. Oh joy. That is one strange looking bike.

  2. It was so thick in Medford today, hard to breath...or perhaps our lungs were just use to the clean pacific air we have been in the past few weeks!

  3. That's a lot of smoke. How nice that you got to enjoy even more at the campground with that campfire. Some days you just can't win! ;c)

  4. Dang that smoke is headed toward our route to go see my Uncle before we head West...I know you're glad to have most of the fire behind you now.

  5. There are 2 of those red 3-wheeled bikes in Canyon Vistas/Superstition Views. They are kind of strange, aren't they?

  6. That bike looks like something that Batman would drive ;-) Thanks for that Wundergrund site ... I use Wundergrund for weather forecasts but never really looked at what else is on the website.