Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Glasgow, North Dakota

August 10 - 11, 2016:

We continue east on route 2 which follows the BNSF Railroad (the High Line) all the way to Glasgow, Montana.  It is an interesting drive that passes through several small towns that have seen better days.  I had to stop at the towns of Malta and Saco to do a quick tour around the block and take a few photos. As I’m driving, I turn on the radio and channel surf, cycling from Native Indian music to church evangelists to new country music to cattle price reports.   I don’t particularly like any of it, but this is small town America.  At Glasgow, Montana we turn south onto route 24 for 18 miles to the West End Campground on Fort Peck Lake.  It’s a Corp of Engineers campground and rather nice except for the very unlevel campsites. 

This place must have some stories to tell

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid were here

They may have spent time at the Palace in Malta

Or thought about robbing the Malta Bank

Grain is king in Malta

Saco main street

The Big Dome Hotel

Storm clouds over the hay fields

Route 2 also runs parallel to the Missouri River and is known as the Lewis and Clark Trail since they traveled and camped on the river and noted much about the area in their diaries.  They wouldn’t recognize much of it today, since the River has been dammed and turned into a giant lake. 

The shores of the current Missouri River

Fort Peck Lake is actually a reservoir formed by the damming of the Missouri River and they say it’s the largest man made Lake in the World.  This earthen Dam and Power Plant was built in the 1930’s during the depression and was a huge undertaking.  The Dam Spillway is a mile away and is a pretty incredible sight and as viewed from the bridge overhead.  There are several campsites on the Lake as it is a popular boating and fishing spot and several of them are free dispersed campsites.

It took a lot of muscle back in the 1930's

The Dam with the Power House in the distance

The Dam Spillway

View of the river on the other side of the Spillway gates

Downtown Glasgow is another railroad town and an Amtrak station stop. It’s a little on the rough side with many vacant buildings and a few remaining gems from the past. There doesn’t seem to be any real attractions in town or much of anything to do.  We went into the Montana Bar which which has that faded, neglected look of a place that is barely paying the bills with old faded race car and rodeo photos on the walls and no draft beer on tap.  It’s mainly farm and ranch country, immence wheat fields that appear to go forever.  The wheat farmers are not having a good year as the price of wheat is so low they are barely breaking even.

The Casino looks to be redone but is now closed

Montana Bar looked better on the outside

Main Street view

Meth is a dead end

The nicest building on town with great tile work

Grain Elevators and Freight Trains seem to go together

Grain fields as far as the eye can see

They even bale hay on the sides of the local roads

We are sort of rushing through this area, leaving in the morning for another oil and gas bonanza boom town, Williston, North Dakota;

Twinkles and Slick

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