Montanta. Big, wide open sky. Cowboy poets. Part mountains, part prairie sprinkled with scenic rivers and expansive farms and ranches and wannabe ranches. We passed one earlier in the day boasting its name: ALMOSTA RANCH. I loved it. Best of all, we may have finally discovered the best way to enjoy a driving vacation.
Set yourself a limit of 300 miles per day, little more or less, have a pre-planned stop and hotel/motel room waiting for you, then arrive around mid-afternoon while there’s still plenty of daylight. After you have time to rest a bit, maybe have a cup of coffee and check out the breakfast digs for the next morning, head out into the town. Ask the locals you run into what they like about their town, what they’d like to see if they were new in town and only had about a day to see it all.
Butte started in the late 19th century as a mining town where they first mined for gold and silver. Then the discovery of electricity led to a demand for copper. And Butte had plenty of copper. So much copper they used it in everything. Even the trashcans on the streets.
Somebody must be using those trashcans too. Locals pride is evident in the clean swept streets, as well as flowers in hanging baskets on almost every street corner. We toured the court house; copper everywhere from the ceilings to the revolving entry and the elevator doors. It was evident everywhere that copper was once king in this old city.
Now we’ll go on briefly to a photographic entree of other things that made, and make, Butte unique.