The Road Home

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After weeks of packing and the anticipation of moving back to our home town, we finally headed out of New Hampshire on May 1st. I have to say, that even though New Hampshire is beautiful, the people are wonderful, and we enjoyed our stay there over the past almost two years, I had absolutely no regrets leaving. Not even a sprig of emotion.

We had a couple of neat stops on our 6 day trek back to Washington State. We’re in our home town now and boy does it feel wonderful. Crazy, and busy, and surreal, but amazingly wonderful. It even smells like home. I didn’t realize until we returned, that nothing in NH was familiar. Even the smells. And I didn’t realize how nice familiar is. A wonderful feeling!

Niagara Falls, NY

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Yes, that’s ice floating in the water. The east coast had what seemed to be, a never-ending winter. It was 38 degrees when we left on May 1st.

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This is looking over at the Canada side and below is a big iceberg.

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Getting closer to the wide open spaces we missed so much!

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This was our 4th trip across country by car, and the three prior trips were all done on the same route. This time I wanted to make sure we visited Niagara Falls before leaving the east coast and then we decided to head toward Wyoming and drive through Yellowstone through the east entrance. In the east entrance and out the west entrance.

It was not a disappointment, but Yellowstone never is.

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Yellowstone Lake, still frozen solid in May. In many areas around the east entrance there was still 5 feet of snow.

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A little thermal pool off to the side. I kept thinking how wonderful it would feel to slip right in there and soak for a while. However, thermal pools in Yellowstone have a very unpleasant sulfur smell. Not to mention that many of them will burn your skin off. They have warnings that tell of stories where children were walking where they shouldn’t have been, fell through the crusty layer and were burned to death.

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There were more Bison in the park than any other time I’ve visited. They are HUGE. Just their heads alone are an incredible sight.

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This time of year they are grazing and wandering around with their babies, very relaxed. Evidently come Fall, it’s rutting season and they are not pleasant to be around. One of the park officials told us, “that’s when people get gored”. Eek.

This little sweet thing was looking right at me.

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A geyser I can’t remember the name of.

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Our selfie while we waited freezing for Old Faithful to faithfully blow.

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It blew, we watched, we took pictures…then we raced back to the car to the heater and the dogs.

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Surprisingly, the park had only been open a few days, and there were still a lot more people than I would have guessed. It was fun to listen for accents and languages and try to guess where everyone was from while we tried to ignore the cold.

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This guy looked like he had a rough winter.

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You would not believe how close people were standing to this Grizzly.

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The park rangers say stay away 100 yards, but people were being people and it sure looked to me like they were a lot closer than that. Bears can sprint at over 30 miles an hour people, remember that. Yellowstone is not a zoo.

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I stood on the seat of our truck and stuck my head out the sunroof.  I’m fully aware of the fact that I can’t run anywhere near 30 miles an hour.

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This Bison looked at me so intently it made me a little nervous. But I took the majority of our pictures through the safety of the sunroof.  This time of year they meander and they could care less that the road is full of cars and people are taking pictures. But like I said, Fall may be a different story. Not only that, but if you visit in the Fall and have young ones, you may be explaining the birds and bees a little sooner than anticipated.

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We creeped along for at least 15 minutes.

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This family crossed the river. They were very cautious and slow and I was impressed that the one in front was clearly their leader and they trusted him.

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It took them about 10 minutes to cross. A neat thing to watch while we were waiting for Buffalo to make their way down the road.

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This is Earthquake Lake, located in Southwestern Montana. In the 50’s there was an earthquake and then a huge landslide that did not turn out well for many campers.

It’s beautiful now, but still kind of eerie.

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That area with the snow and no trees is the site of the landslide.

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Once we hit Montana, it was starting to feel more and more like home. Abigail couldn’t wait to get out of the car and run through the wide open spaces. In case you don’t know, New Hampshire is very dense and in the spring and summer it’s like a jungle. There are mountains, but people from the west coast would call them tall hills. Even the dogs were happy to see the mountains and get a fresh breath of wide open spaces.

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Always excited to sniff around.

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And finally, back in our home town, reunited with our favorite kid in the world.

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The dogs were elated to be back on their old stomping grounds.

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Happy, happy, happy.

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