Illinois Pioneers

Guest Bloggers: Cris Kenny and Lori Dickens

Napervilians on Buck Trail Ridge

My name is Cris Kenny.  Jim asked me to write a blog post about our recent trip to Montana.  The trip included best friends since 6th grade, Lori, Denise and myself including our husbands Jim Darrin and Ron.  

Many songs have been written over the years to tell a story.  During this trip, one of our favorite things to do after each day’s action-packed adventure was to lounge about Pete’s cozy cabin. We would sing along with requested favorite songs (most often from the seventies), on Spotify, managed by D.J. Jim.  We would like to attempt to use some of those songs to tell our story.

Our first Big Sky adventure was to the Gallitin National Forest.  We were definitely not Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay (Otis Redding) when we went fly fishing on the Madison River.  Each couple had a boat and guide and competed to catch more fish than the master fisherman, Jim Dickens.  At the end of the day, Jim got 20 plus while the rest of us caught 2-5.  The winding river and vast vistas more than made up for our paltry catch. After a long day we worked up a “Big Sky” hunger and thirst and headed to the Gallatin Riverhouse Grill where Jim touted the best $7 Fried Chicken dinner we would ever have.  Nobody got the chicken but Jim. We all Drank Another Beer (Luke Bryant) and became best friends with our waiter Sean.

Our next full day found us driving The Long and Winding Road (The Beatles) in our ATV’s up Buck Ridge Trail. The trails were definitely windy and bumpy.  Once again, Big Sky did not disappoint. The views were incredible including the sighting of a black bear running through a meadow.  We wrapped up the night at Olive B’s where we dined on local delicacies including bison (fresh off the range).

Speaking of bison, our third and final day was spent In a Daydream (Freddie Jones Band) meandering through Yellowstone National Park.  Soon after entering the park, we came eye to eye with a big bull bison walking down the road causing a massive traffic jam behind him. While we couldn’t miss a visit to the iconic Old Faithful, we all marveled at the beauty and grandeur of Artist Point, and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.  Our newer visitors were surprised and impressed with the piping hot geothermal pools.  We saw some of the best Yellowstone had to offer, but all agreed another visit would definitely be in our future.  We headed back to Big Sky and decided to finish our trip at the Gallitin Riverhouse Grill where they serve the best $7 chicken.  Jim was the only one who got the chicken . . . again.

We ended the night back at Pete’s cozy cabin snuggled up to each other making our requests of our favorite songs to D.J. Jim and realizing, Life’s Been Good To Us So Far (Joe Walsh). 

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