Monday, November 9, 2009

Red Rock Lakes ...

I paid a quick visit to Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge a few days ago, making the long, dirt-road drive from Monida and then over the pass to Henry's Lake in Idaho. It was a blustery autumn afternoon, and it was easy to see that it wouldn't be long until the place was snowed in for the winter. But it was gorgeous.

The refuge is in the high Centennial Valley, just north of the Idaho line in Beaverhead County. The valley was once a primary route for stagecoach travelers headed to Yellowstone, and homesteaders later settled there, but hardly anyone lives in the valley anymore ... it's too remote and the winters are too long. Much of the valley floor is used as summer range for cattle, while the Refuge occupies the eastern end. It was established in 1935 to protect habitat for migratory birds, and was a key part of the effort to save the Trumpeter Swan from extinction. Beautiful country, and well worth a visit.


  1. I never tire of Montana clouds. I've been other places, and don't remember what the sky looked like there. And when I went to L.A., I lost the sky completely. But Montana changes her clouds constantly, and always impresses me with her choices.
    Thanks for the glimpses of the mountains!

  2. Yep, I absolutely agree. People who don't really know Montana always thing the whole "big sky" thing is just tourist marketing ... but it's definitely not. We have the biggest and most amazing skies anywhere. And I never tire of looking at it.

    The very best ones, though, are definitely out in your part of the world. :)