We had breakfast at Brush Creek and then we were off onto the next leg of our adventure. We saw some Sand Hill Cranes, at least Steve did, my eyes for bird watching are not as good as his are.
Then to add to our excitement we had a moose cross the highway in front of us! I was in such shock that I didn’t have a chance to take a picture of the moose! While we were discussing our near accident, we decided to check our luggage and make sure that the mule deer shed (antler) was secure. Nothing like having a pointy flying projectile ruin a wonderful road trip!
Lo and behold, it turns out that two of our large suitcases were missing. The fool wrangler at Bruch Creek who was assigned to put our luggage in the van didn’t bring everything down. So we had to turn around and go back to the ranch.
We then drove to Rock City to try to find wild mustangs. One of the staff at Brush Creek told us that it was a very interesting park. Seeing a gopher hole and Pilot Mesa was easier to find. We did find 4 out of the 1500 wild mustangs. The wildlife preserve was over 250,000 acres. So we were really lucky to see any.
To get this close to the horses you need to have a four wheel drive vehicle with plenty of road clearance and lots of free time. This we didn’t have so it was back in the van again.
Once on our way again we stopped at Flaming Gorge. Steve had vacationed here once with one of his brothers for a fishing trip. The dam impounds the Green River.
There were lots of boats that are launched here every day. The fish are constantly pounded by anglers of all kinds. Steve did not enjoy fishing on the Green River at all.
The dam rises 500 feet above bed rock impounding the Green River. It was created in 1964 to supply hydro electricity and supply water to the Colorado River Storage Project. An added bonus is the recreational aspect of boating and fishing.
Then we passed through the little town of Dutch John. Summer residents total about 250, and 150 in the winter.
Next stop was our trip to Dinosaur National Monument.
It was hot again and we were tired and cranky and had a long way to go so we only saw the movie. We did achieve a magnificent find of an Alaska license plate! We likely won’t get all 50 as Hawaii is really hard to get.
Our final stop of the day was Grand Junction Colorado. We had dinner at a great restaurant. Unfortunately I can’t remember the name so it will remain our secret.
I started with greens with feta cheese.
I had scallops with a vegetable spring roll while Steve had beef with french fries.
Dessert was called “The Bomb”. Chocolate mousse with a layer of something and then some chocolate stout beer foam. We finished it all!
When was the last time you saw a moose cross the highway?
I’m back! Did you miss me? I am continuing our road trip west.
Today would be our last day at Brush Creek Ranch. As usual I had breakfast by myself. Steve would be off fishing. I would do some riding. Buffets always yield unattractive plating!
Here is Steve’s guide checking out the water. You can tell that he is the guide as he has the net. Also if the guide were taking the picture he would either have the sport centered in the picture or on the left of the frame looking toward the river. I should stop complaining, and just be thankful that I have a picture of the beautiful stream!
While Steve fished I rode. I bought two shirts and one pair of jeans to wear while I rode. This shirt is a white buffalo plaid. Buffalo plaids are usually red and black. A new fun fact for you!
Below us you see the Artist Colony and some of the creek side cabins. We stayed in one of the Creekside cabins on one of our stays. Brush Creek invites artists (musicians, composers, photographers, painters) to stay for the season and create.
Now would be a great time to talk about the couple from last night, S and R. They live in the Denver area. She had an absolutely magic voice. Very cultured, with a very interesting accent. While we were waiting to start our ride I told her to keep her eyes out for one of the other guests as she had a three carat diamond. I was very impressed with the ring. I love diamonds. Even larger diamonds on someone else’s hand. There is a joke that a diamond can only be too big if it is on some else’s hand!
She smiled and told me that the ring was nice, but that the ring from her first husband was a 6 carat flawless stone. At that, I shut up but of course the wheels in my head started to spin. How would I be able so get the background story out of her? What was the backstory? Why would she dump him? Did he cheat on her? Did she find out he liked to play with the members of the other team? Was he dead?
I pondered this all afternoon on my next ride. I did lots of pondering as you can imagine!
Here is a beautiful fish from Steve’s fishing.
This is a rainbow trout. I think that it is a close up of the same fish, but who knows? Only Steve and his guide know! Steve caught 46 fish that day!
On my afternoon ride I found this beautiful deer shed. I am happy that we were going to drive back home as I don’t think that I would have been able to fit it in my suitcase!
Steve and I met back for dinner. This was my entree. It looks like it was polenta with elk tenderloin. It could be something else entirely also!
Dessert was a berry crumble.
So we met my new friends from my ride at the saloon before dinner. I asked them to join us for dinner. I have scrambled their faces to preserve their privacy. We met a new couple also. The couple at the far end of the table run a travel agency that specializes in hunting trips. Brush Creek has much to offer for those that like to shoot and hunt. The ranch used to have bison that were available to hunt , but the bison kept escaping and got in the neighbor’s fields. The neighbors were not very happy at that as the fences were ruined and the cattle were bothered. Bothered cattle do not bring happy cattle prices. So that very pricey hunting option had to be scrapped. The couple on the right, S are the couple that we met last night and I went on the ride with today. S is the owner of the six carat diamond.
Now for the tale of S and R. (Which I found out about during cocktail hour at the saloon, this was not something that was discussed at dinner. Who discusses their ex-husband during dinner?) R, the husband, was a senior Vice President for a very large mining, gas and oil development company. They live in the Denver area. He has traveled all around the world managing projects. S was studying to get her degree in social work. She was not in her twenties so this must have been a second career for her.
Now for the story. You will notice that I kind of jump right into my questions. That’s me! Some might think I am brusque, but I prefer to call it an efficient strategy.
“So how did you get a 6 carat flawless engagement ring? Was it a family heirloom?”
“My first husband was a Saudi Prince.”
Yes, even I can be rendered speechless.
No, I did not ask if she was wife number 1, 2, or 3. Remember I do not ask every question I might want to know the answer to! Nor did I ask which Saudi Prince she had been married to. There happen to be 15,000!
Somehow the answers to some of my divorce questions came out (I did not ask what caused the divorce! It appears that not all of the Arab sheikh style of Harlequin romances have a happy ending in real life!) S lived in Switzerland for two years while the divorce was finalized. That is where her accent came from. It was a combination of upper crust English and a European component. I don’t know why it took two years, but the divorce did. As someone who has been happily married for over 40 years I don’t know nothing about divorces!
S kept all of the jewelry, and keeps it in the vault. She takes it out when she goes to black tie events. As the jewels are not from her current husband she is uncomfortable wearing them on her normal activities. I remarked that S might have been married to a prince, but now she is married to the Real Prince in her life! Isn’t that a romantic phrase? Perhaps I should write romance novels afterall!
Thus endeth our stay at Brush Creek Ranch. Remember how I mentioned previously that I stay in touch with some of the people we meet on our trips? On a trip years later, Steve and I did meet up with R and S!
Do you have any buffalo plaid shirts in your house?
Are you married to a Saudi Prince?
Instead of a third question I thought I would show you what a six carat diamond looks like! This was not her ring, I found it on the internet. You might be wondering what the price point for a 6 carat, D colored internally flawless diamond is…about $550,000. Now I don’t know if her diamond was internally flawless or not. That is still some hunk of change for a ring.
Today would be a special day for me as Steve was going to spend the whole day with me! After breakfast we were going to the gun range and then we were going to go to Robber’s Roost on a trail ride.
This was the set up for the rifle shooting. The rifle was placed on the little bean bag for stability.
Here is Steve getting instructions on how to shoot at the fake prairie dogs.
Next it was my turn.
Steve is getting instructions on the shot gun.
Here is Steve shooting at the targets with the shot gun. As my shoulders couldn’t lift the shot gun, only Steve did this.
My turn with the long guns. We didn’t shoot at the closer targets with these long guns. The closer targets were used with the pistols.
Next is was Steve’s turn to shoot the long range rifle.
Here is a better view of the targets. I think they got painted every night.
These are the types of guns that were available, and the corresponding ammunition.
I enjoyed using the pistol. It is much lighter than the other weapons! Our first year the instructor let my use his personal pistol. It had a laser which made it a lot easier for me to aim at the target. I still did very well with the pistol.
Here we are all done with our shooting lessons.
It was nice having lunch with Steve. Usually I am on my own.
Cookies for dessert!
Here I am all saddled up and ready to ride with Steve. Of course you wouldn’t know if this picture was taken after our ride and I was using the fence to hold my self up!
Here is our guide retelling the story of how this lookout got it’s name. I think any high point gets the name of Robber’s Roost out in the west!
The view from the top of Robber’s Roost is tremendous!
Trying to get the horses to poses for a picture can be difficult!
Here are some nice pictures of Steve and I coming down the mountain.
Dinner tonight was Creekside. There was a big barbecue. It was much different than previous nights as the weekend crowd included a lot of families. We had been spoiled with the ranch being mostly adults only the previous days.
Nevertheless we had a fun time. We met a couple from Denver. They had very exotic accents. Hopefully I will find out tomorrow where they are from!
Do you think Steve should grow his beard back?
Do you think I will find out more about the couple we had dinner with?
No breakfast pictures today. Instead it’s straight to archery. I think this is where I really realized how bad my shoulders are. I couldn’t draw the bow back at all to shoot. I had fun watching though!
Then it was back to the lodge for lunch. Salad, salmon and wagyu sliders.
Dessert was Apple Brown Betty and lemon bars.
Then it was off for a ride with a male wrangler. All comments are kept to myself! Although I might add that he had a nice seat. Ha Ha!
We forded some streams.
Then on the way back we saw the yurts where you can have a massage in the middle of the meadow.
Then it was back to meet Steve for dinner. Steve had a bit of a slow day and only caught 4 fish. None were picture worthy, so no pictures for you!
Caesar salad for a starter.
Then chicken for our entree.
No dessert pictures for you!
Was this blog post too short?
Are some posts too long?
Do you have arthritis in your neck shoulders and hips like I do?
More from our 6500 cross country road trip in 2015. Enjoy!
Breakfast with a view. The main lodge at the ranch has music going through their sound system every morning. This is my favorite set!
Breakfast. A little of this, and a little of that.
Breakfast is served on the patio outside. The heat lamps are nice in case it gets cold.
I went for fishing lessons with Trey. Steve had fished several times with Trey before and found him to be a great guide. Steve and I agreed that it would be good that instead of his trying to teach me someone else should try to help me with my casting. After I got the hang of it Trey went to another part of the pond to try and catch some fish himself. After noticing that he was getting no action whatsoever I told him that we should go back to the lodge. I figured that if he was not catching anything, then surely I would not also! Nil for the morning. I am hoping that shooting will be easier. Just aim at the target and fire!
Back at the lodge I had lunch by myself.
Meanwhile Steve was out with his guide. He caught one beautiful fish.
He had lunch here.
There are tee-pees for kids to play in when there are group dinners.
It is a pretty spot to visit.
Here is another large fish that he caught after lunch. Steve ended up catching 18 fish for the day. The two largest fish were 17 inches.
After lunch I went riding.
Later we had cocktails at Falcon Peak. This duo plays at many Brush Creek evenings. They are married and have great voices. Singing together a long time they harmonize well.
Don’t we make a cute couple? The answer is “Yes!”
There were lots of shrimp and crab legs to eat.
A sundown picture.
This one is a little better.
Back at the lodge we had a lovely dinner. Dinner included fried polenta and smoked prime rib. It was served buffet style.
The good-watermelon, the bad-fried bananas, with caramel sauce and whipped cream which looked a little bit ugly.
I scraped my plate clean.
Then it was to the campfire for some s’mores.
If I worked outside the house I could have this picture on my desk!
Perhaps Steve would want this picture on his desk.
Steve wondered why I didn’t talk about last night’s dinner. Here is a short recap:
It took us quite a while to find the house as it was in the middle of nowhere. Well to begin with , Sheridan Wyoming is in the middle of nowhere to start with! Directions were good, we only had to turn around once as we overshot the turn for the driveway. It was all on one level and a stream ran right through the back yard. Poor Steve didn’t go fishing, you can be sure that he would have loved to try to wet his fly line!
The couple we had dinner with were so nice to invite us over. They had just moved into their new house, and hadn’t even finished unpacking! We had a delicious steak dinner. The couple also have a ranch that we didn’t visit, but I would have loved to have visited it as on the farm they have a giraffe! I think they must have bought it from a traveling zoo that went out of business.
It was time for breakfast, but first we filled the car up with gas. Making sure that your car has a gas tank that is never less than 1/2 full is always a good idea.
After getting my picture taken in front of the buffalo at the gas station it was time to look for breakfast.
Due to the Labor Day holiday, most places were closed. The famous Mint Bar was closed as it serves booze, not breakfast. Although I have heard that many people do enjoy booze at breakfast. In fact at a recent doctor visit I was asked if I recently had alcohol at breakfast. I told her no of course, but also asked how many people did admit to that!
Anyway we did find a place for breakfast across the street.
We even spotted a real cowboy who war wearing spurs on his boots! That would be the guy with grey hair, not his little wrangler!
Steve had the bison and elk sausage egg platter.
I had the strawberry and banana french toast with whipped cream. Where else can you get that?
After breakfast our final stop was to wave good bye to the The DaVinci horse. As I told you yesterday our good friend GG was in charge of the project design. Kim L was the local businessman who spearheaded the project. There were many statutes all around town. Kim and a group of other civic leaders thought it would be a good way to bring tourists to the area and to also encourage city pride.
Then it was time to head south to Casper Wyoming.
A drive through Starbucks! Ordering was via the drive through or walk up window! This would be the last sign of civilization for while!
We headed up and over Casper Mountain. There are no pictures of this as I was scared to death. There were few guard rails, and I was holding onto my seat while Steve kept us on the road. The elevation topped at 8000 feet. Sheridan Wyoming’s elevation is 3800 feet, and then Casper Wyoming’s elevation was 5000 feet so we had quite the steady climb!
Last night at dinner we were told to take the Shirley Basin route to Saratoga Wyoming where Brush Creek Ranch is located. We were told that although the route is quite deserted it was a very interesting way to Saratoga. Once over the mountain we headed downhill toward Shirley Basin.
Years ago Uranium was mined in the town of Shirley Basin. It is now a ghost town as the uranium mine closed shortly after the Three Mile Island accident and the price of uranium plummeted.
Once over the crest the road narrowed to a dirt road that we drove on for 25 miles. This road looks pretty rough!
Is heading down a good sign? Let’s hope so!
Pavement! That means civilization is not far away!
I was so happy to see cars heading in the opposite direction again!
We emerged onto the High Plains where we remained at an elevation of 6500-7000 feet. There were views for miles with mountains in the distance.
I don’t know how the pioneers lived back in the day. The conditions were brutal.
We didn’t see many cattle. Did you know that it takes 10-15 acres of range land to feed one head of cattle. No wonder the ranches are so big! The weather is a sunny 75 degrees.
We finally made it to Brush Creek Ranch. We decided to try the hotel style units in the main lodge. I was hoping that they would upgrade us and put us in a cabin, but no dice.
While we were discussing our activities for the coming week at the Activities Barn I started to feel a touch of the swoons. It was a stylish swoon, as although I took off my hat, I kept my sunglasses on!
We headed back up to the room and I laid down with my feet up to rest. Elevation here is 7600 feet. Here we were hoping that by driving out west I would acclimate better to the higher elevations. Guess that didn’t work out so well, now did it!
We had made prior arrangements to have massages at the spa. As I don’t like to be in the same room as Steve when he is having a massage I requested two rooms. I was disappointed when we were assigned the same room. Oh well. To make matters worse, my massage therapist was wearing cowboy boots, and was clomping all over the floor during the massage. I had to ask her to take the boots off. So far, not a good start to our stay!
Soon it was time to head downstairs for dinner. I hoped things would improve!
This was our entree.
We had a lovely wine with dinner.
Chocolate desserts always make me feel better, and this one did the job. For awhile at least!
Our room had a view of the courtyard and in the courtyard is the Saloon. Unfortunately it was Karaoke night at the Saloon that first evening. It was very loud. I got really pissed as there were other rooms available in the main Lodge that were facing the mountains. Why did they put us in such a room that we would be hearing all the booze hounds in the bar? While Steve thought it not so bad, and promptly went to sleep with a pillow over his head I continued to stew. So I wrote an e-mail to the Vice President who is in charge of managing the ranch. We had met him on our previous visits and he told me he always enjoyed my opinions about the ranch. So I gave him a very detailed account about our stay up to that point in time. After I sent it, I got an e-mail back stating that Mike was on vacation. Oh, well!
How radioactive are you?
Do you like couple massages in the same room? Or should they be two singles?
Do you perform Karaoke, and are you a booze hound?
Why do I have a picture of a Ford Mustang car as my first picture? Well, there was a car rally this weekend in Sturgis, South Dakota. This is from the parking lot of our hotel. The guy driving the red Mustang wasn’t really trying to make much noise. I wish I would have gotten his real vroom vroom sound. Steve wouldn’t have been. It was bad enough I was questioning theses strangers at 7:30 in the morning! Sturgis is famous for their annual motorcycle rally’s. Hundreds of thousands of people attend.
Here is a little of a vroom vroom. I asked the driver what they did at the Mustang Rally. It is basically a bunch of people showing off their cars and all the modifications that they do to the cars to make loud noises!
Due to the Labor Day holiday we have problems finding someplace to eat. After trying two recommended breakfast places from Trip Advisor that only served coffee and granola we settled on a Perkin’s. I warned Steve about his future heart attack with his breakfast. Mine was bad enough with the fried egg and sausage.
Steve had the scrambled eggs, sausage hash browns and gravy covered biscuit!
After advice from my cousin Larry who lives in the Denver area we decided that we might have time after all to explore Spearfish Canyon on our way to Devil’s Tower. We got Steve his fishing license in less than five minutes at the Minit Man gas station. We passed a pretty waterfall and then Steven picked a spot to try. Success! Steve got his first trout in South Dakota. No pictures though, you will just have to believe him!
Then it was on to Devil’s Tower Wyoming. Remember Close Encounters of the Third Kind? People actually climb Devil’s Tower. Over 100,000 people have climbed DT and there have been only five fatalities. I think that is because they only let people climb it who are well vetted.
Look how buff this couple is!
We didn’t climb DT of course, we just strolled around the base!
If you zoom in on this picture you can see some of the people climbing!
Then it was onto Sheridan Wyoming. We wanted to see the DaVinci horse sculpture that our friend G was involved with.
Steve is going to get in trouble for touching the horse’s hoof.
But since M, G’s wife only reads my current blog post and totally skips the old posts G will never know!
Here is K , who was the impetus for the sculpture garden in Sheridan.
We had dinner with K and his wife M. They had just bought a new house and we had dinner there. They had lots of light switches along with lots of lights and I had fun helping M figure out what switch went with what light fixture!
Would you have been as accommodating as I was and let Steve try to catch a fish in South Dakota?
Can you hear the music from Close Encounters in your head now?
My posts of my excellent adventures of the past are much different than my current adventures. I now take many more pictures of the food, and what the rooms look like. It makes the old ones easier to post as they are shorter, and have less pictures so the loading is faster. However I have to scour my old emails to friends and family that detail the interesting tidbits about the people I met. I also have to wade through 20,000 pictures to find the correct pictures to illustrate my posts. Sigh, what I do for my fandom! Ha Ha!
Today while Steve fished, I rode and then took a tour of the property with my RAZR to almost the highest point on property. Here is a lovely view of the ranch and the valley below. Isn’t it peaceful?I saw some lovely wild flowers along the road. We are getting closer to one of my favorite colors. Here we are, a deep pink. I liked these guys the best. My dear daughter likes to bring me pink roses. She is such a sweetheart. One last view and we are done for the day.
Our second to last night at Brush Creek we had a barbecue at Creekside. There was a roping demonstration and Steve tried to get that little calf head on the bale of hay. He almost got it! You don’t want to see the video of my attempt. It was very bad. How those cowboys rope those moving animals, while riding on a horse I will never know! But they do! Every year, this country trio plays. They are fun to watch. Here we have a couple of doctors who were on there honeymoon from England. They were having such a good time! The next morning we took a ride to the gun range. Here I am posing, if Steve were in the picture it could have made a great holiday card pose! Here is Steve lined up with his pistol. You may not see it, but believe me, he was toting some action! I liked the guns with the laser sights the best. It made it much easier to see the targets.
Then we tried to shoot the fake groundhogs. Well, that’s it for Brush Creek. We were off to meet friends in Vail Colorado. But first we got to stop at the Continental Divide sign. One spit in one direction and it will end up in the Pacific Ocean, spit the other way and it goes to the Atlantic. Unless it dries up first.
Here we have the lovely S and S. We are on a stroll in Vail. I should have had my picture taken with them, but “Oh well!” No more for this trip!
Next up in my posts is my current trip to Delphi Club, in Abaco. Yay for those that want current stories, although I do think even past trip reports are worthy! Take that, complainers!
I spent the morning riding and observing while Steve went off fishing. Steve fished on the North Platte and caught 20 fish. They were all wild and very healthy. The North Platte hadn’t been stocked in over twenty years. A much different experience than the ones he has at home on streams stocked by the NYS DEC in April.
Steve and I went back to the ropes course in the afternoon to do the Zip Line Experience again. Here are two young guests going on the zip line walk to the first platform. There had been a bear sighting near the Ropes Course and a bear trap was brought in. Once the bear got in he didn’t get out. We never did find out if the bear trap was successful or not.
The ranch had a small herd of buffalo. Buffalo are large and mean, There were warning signs to be aware, and to make sure that you closed gates securely after you left the pasture where they were held. As the ranch was a destination spot for hunters also, it could be arranged to shoot one of the bison. It was expensive, but could be done if you were willing to spend the big bucks. The bison ended up being nothing but trouble as they had a habit of escaping and wandering off onto the highway or neighboring ranches. As they couldn’t be transported back to the ranch they had to be shot.