My Adventure Story
The beginning of our great Alaska adventure includes flying from our home in Rochester, MN to Olympia, Wa to meet up with our group. Evan, freshly graduated from Mayo High School and one day after his last game in the state baseball tournament, and I left very early on Saturday morning (6:30 am). 4.5 hours later we landed in Miles City, Montana, flying over a low cloud layer for much of the first half. The clouds cleared just in time to get a look at the Missouri River near Mobridge, SD. We were on the ground in Miles City only long enough to fill the tanks, empty the bladders, and check the weather for the big event of the trip -- crossing the Rockies.
We climbed thru a thin cloud, layer then proceeded southwest along the Yellowstone river toward Billings. As we approched the city, we could begin to see the high mountains in the southern and western horizions, as well as the gap into which we planned to fly. Our course took us west to Livingston, northwest to Helena, west to Missoula, then across Idaho to Spokane. Much of the course was over I-90 and the valleys and canyons that decorate its path. We dodged some building cumulus clouds and briefly got spattered with ice pellets beneath one of them before crossing the last ridge at 12,000 ft then descending into western Idaho and eastern Washington. 3.5 hours after leaving Miles City, we were ready for a late lunch and some rest before completing the west coast journey tomorrow morning.