Quiet night. Drove through Roosevelt Arch at 6:50 AM. Bright blue, cloudless skies & in the upper 50s. Four elk are bedded down near the Arch.
7:30 AM – turned onto road toward northeast entrance and into Lamar Valley. Large, glacier boulders are strewn through the area. We would say, “Boulder or bison?” Saw herds with many baby bison. Saw elk and deer. No wolves. Passed Soda Butte, a dormant cone geyser. Lamar Valley is vast & peaceful looking with sagebrush & winding rivers.
8:30 AM – exit the park & stop at nice rest rooms @ Chamber building in Cooke City. Last of civilization before the Beartooth Highway. Wild & fantastic scenery, dramatic drive!
The road goes up, up, up… switchbacks, cliffs & drop offs. Incredibly stunning views – pictures just can’t do it justice (but I took a lot anyway!). Turned around to return rather than going all the way to Red Lodge.
11:30 AM – Onto the Chief Joseph Scenic Byway which is another beautiful drive. Stopped for picnic lunch overlooking the Absaroka Mountain Range. It’s in the upper 70s – crazy, after being in SNOW on the Beartooth. Stop at Dead Indian Hill Summit & read several historical signs about the flight of the Nez Perce Indians.
1:40 PM – Cody, Wyoming! Drive through town & 13 miles out to Heart Mountain Interpretive Center. Small, interesting museum that tells the story of the Heart Mountain Japanese Internment Camp during WWII. Over 10,000 Japanese-Americans shipped here from the West Coast after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Not a proud incident for the USA.
3:30 PM – checked into The Beartooth Inn (on outskirts of town on 17th Street). Huge room with fridge, coffee maker & microwave. Chill in room a bit – temps now in high 80s. Stroll around downtown area & watch the free ‘shoot out’ skit in front of the Irma Hotel. Walk down a block to Adriano’s Italian Restaurant. Good dinner.