Day 8, Monday, July 23, 2018
After I left Bannack, I meandered through the back roads to make my way to Bozeman. There are so many beautiful pretty back roads in Montana!
In Bozeman, I had just enough time to visit the Museum of the Rockies before they closed for the day. Admission was $13 with my AAA discount. I started out with a movie in their planetarium – Faster than Light, which explored the technology required to get to the next closest planet of the next closest sun that could potentially have the right criteria to be able to support human life. It boggles the mind to think about it! The journey now is so far outside of a human lifetime, but scientists are still working on the technology to make it possible.
The museum has an incredible exhibits on dinosaurs! The area that is now Montana had conditions that were near perfect for fossilization, so there are a lot of dinosaur fossils found there. It was so neat to see the variety of dinosaurs that walked the earth. I loved the fossil Triceratops skulls that they had there – seeing them up close really shows how big these animals were. I had no idea that there were two different species of Triceratops! They lived about a million years apart, and one was a descendant of the other. I learn so much in my travels!
The Museum of the Rockies also had exhibits on the history of Montana and the Bozeman area. They even had an exhibit on different types of guitars from around the world, including an “air guitar”! It is nice to see museum curators who have a sense of humor.
Outside they had a historic pioneer home on the property that you can visit, but it was closed when I was there. The Tinsley home was the second home of the Tinsley family, who homesteaded in Montana and raised eight children in a one room cabin. The house was built in 1890 and was moved to the museum in 1986. I was a little disappointed that I didn’t get to go in the house, but I did see a cute Magpie hopping around though!
I went to Ted’s Montana Grill in Bozeman for dinner. I was really hungry at that point, and it seemed easy and familiar since I have been to a Ted’s Montana Grill before. I had the steak salad and it was ok, but I regretted not getting the bison burger! I paired my salad with a Red Lodge Bent Nail IPA. After dinner I had to drive to the next town over – Livingston, Montana, because I wasn’t able to find a campground in Bozeman. That was one of the only times I wasn’t able to find a tent site in the town I wanted to be in. The place in Livingston was decent, it was right on the river, but the tent sites were pretty small and close to the neighbors.
At the campground, I did laundry for the first time and talked with a kind, elderly man who was on a solo trip with his RV. He was 79 and still traveling with his motorhome; he was trying to get back into it after his wife passed away the year before. He was friendly, and we talked for a while about solo travel – he said his kids worried about him, and I could relate! It was nice to just spend some time talking and watching a movie on TV with some company.
What a fantastic (and busy!) day!