The ride back over Champion Pass (7000 ft) west of Boulder went quick, cold but sunny weather unlike the trip over to Boulder. When I rode into Deer Lodge the temperature’s were in the 60’s. We put up behind the elevators of the Ranchers Argriculture Service in Deer Lodge. I had stopped there on the ride over and bought a sack of grain for the horses. I left 1/2 the bag there as I knew I would be returning via the same route. I must say, this is the first time I have ever rerode the the same route and it is infinitly easier to come back knowing where the good campsites will be, where the water is, and like riding into Deer Lodge, that I would have a place to camp and grain for the horses. Wade Murphy from Back Country Horseman stopped on the way into town. ” What do you need?” “Can I get you anything?” “Well I could use some salt and a couple of canesters of propane”. And sure enough he brought then out to me. Always so many that help. The grain elevators were a reminder of my childhood days when I would ride in the back of my fathers old farm truck to the “mill” to have the corn ground into feed for his herd of Holstein milk cows. The elevators, located next to the railroad tracks, at the west side of town were in remarkably good working condition. The smell, sounds and even the men working the elevators had memories chasing thur my mind as I picked up the 1/2 sack of grain for the horses and got an early start the next day.
So here I am back in Helmville, once again at the Geary Ranch rodeo grounds, 3 day stop over. When I rode into Helmville September 23rd I was greeted by several people coming home from the funeral of Dan Geary who was 3rd generation Geary clan the last of his generation. The Geary Ranch took root in 1867 or there abouts. Irish Catholic. The ranch is still owned and managed by the family. Bob and Dick Geary were moving cattle, sorting calves from cows, shipping out the yearlings the day I rode into town this time. It is always a loud commotion on these days with the cows ballering in protest. Life goes on. When I rode in last month Lisa Bignell was the “welcome wagon extraordinare.” I sent her a thank you card and said “… the smile that you greeted me with was as generous as the friendliness that fills the town of Helmville.” She not only made sure I had a place to stay, she also made sure I had a hot meal from the Copper Queen Saloon. Many Thanks to all of you in the town of Helmville that I met and who helped in one way or another to make my ride more pleasurable. I hope to be back in January for a slide show presentation.