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Tag Archive | "Montana"

The Post travels—everywhere!


The Post traveled all over the world this year, including the old walled city of Lucca, in the Tuscany region of Italy, where Steve and Judy Reed visited in September. Photo by J. Reed.

It was a great year for our “Post travels to” feature in 2017. The Post traveled far and wide. It traveled as close as Traverse City, and as far away as New Zealand. Other places the Post traveled included: Weidman, Mich. to see Dr. Pol; Canada, the Danube River in Hungary and Germany; Great Britain; Peru; St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Tenn.; Beartooth Highway in Montana and Wyoming; the Bahamas; Beijing; Big Bay, Mich.; Branson, Missouri; California; China; Cozumel, Mexico; Disney World; the Dominican Republic; Los Angeles; Fort Myers; Hawaii; Italy; Kentucky, Ohio; Shipshewana; and Spain.

We have run out of Post travel photos, so if you have one, please send it in! (See details in other Post travels story on this page.)

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Post travels to Rocky Mountains


The Post traveled to the top of Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, 11,800 feet, well above the timberline, with Mary Ann Misner and John Cornell, both of Cedar Springs. This was part of their two and a half week trip exploring the Rocky Mountain region – from Mount Rushmore, South Dakota, to Salt Lake City, Utah, to northern Red Lodge, Montana, to Durango, Colorado.

They drove over several mountain passes that were above 10,000 feet, including the million dollar highway of Durango through the mining towns of Silverton and Ouary. One of the hightlights of the trip was watching a horseback rider and two dogs on top of a mountain above the timberline in northern Wyoming, herding a large herd of sheep (approximately 500) across the road in front of them. They also saw wild mustangs in Montana before traveling over Bear Tooth Pass into Yellowstone National Park, and about 200 buffalo in the park. Arches National Park was also beautiful, with the evening sun shining on the arches.

The most dangerous part of the trip was dealing with a herd of free range cattle in the middle of the road after dark. Unlike our Michigan deer, their eyes didn’t shine in the headlights and they didn’t dash out of the way. The cattle have the right-of-way there, and if you hit one you have to pay the rancher. The cattle seemed to know this. At night time, they recommend driving slowly or not at all, if you ever have the chance to visit free range country in this beautiful area. 

Thanks so much for taking us with you!

Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

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Michigan DNR wildfire fighters help battle western blazes


Michigan Department of Natural Resources wildland firefighters are on the scene in Montana to help with fires around the state. Michigan personnel on loan in Montana include two three-man engine crews and an incident management team. Photo by Michigan DNR firefighter Cory Mallory.

Helicopters fly over a burning hillside in Montana recently as firefighters work to control a grass fire. Two Michigan Department of Natural Resources wildland fire engines staffed by two three-man crews as well as an incident management team are in Montana now helping with fire suppression efforts. Photo by Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Surrounded by smoke, constantly watching the wind and trying to tamp down fast-moving flames, Michigan Department of Natural Resources firefighters using two specially equipped fire trucks have been helping battle grass and forest wildfires in Montana since mid-July.

They may do what firefighters call “black lining”—purposely burning a strip of grass to deprive an approaching wildfire of fuel and stop it in its tracks.

Or they may “wet line”—dousing combustible materials in the path of a fire to keep a blaze from spreading.

Or they might, during a breather from work, do what any of us would: whip out cell phones to shoot a quick video as a low-flying tanker plane releases a belly full of water over a hot spot of burning trees, brush or grass.

“Statistically, it’s the grasses that are the most dangerous. They move fast and burn quick,” said Ben Osterland, who led one of two three-man teams that drove the Michigan fire engines to Montana.

Fires have consumed more than half a million acres across Montana so far this season, and Michigan wildland firefighters are playing critical roles in helping put them out. The engines remain in Montana and a third set of crews rotated into the fire zone this week.

In mid-July, Osterland and Cory Mallory each led an engine team, driving the massive, four-wheel-drive vehicles from Michigan to Montana on a 20-hour trek at speeds that maxed out around 64 miles per hour to work long days and live under sometimes primitive conditions.

“Montana absolutely loved our people and they love our trucks,” said Lee Osterland, who also worked on an incident management team in Montana this summer. “It’s a really good opportunity to help another state out.” Michigan firefighters also are serving in Oregon and Washington state now and spent time in Arizona and British Columbia earlier this summer.

The four-wheel-drive fire vehicles are equipped with brush guards and a winch. They carry 800 gallons of water as well as a pump and two reels of hose.

When laying a wet line, the driver may drive slowly along while another firefighter walks alongside, spraying water, and the passenger sprays water from nozzles controlled from inside the cab. Then they set a fire between the wet line and the advancing fire.

“You burn the fuel in front of the fire, so you are essentially fighting fire with fire,” Mallory said.

Firefighters might stay in hotels if the blaze is close to a big-enough city, but they often camp near the site or even sleep in their trucks.

“Where I was, we slept in the dirt,” Ben Osterland said. “We were in tents every night. Some nights, we were on the night shift and we would sleep during the day, when it was the hottest.”

For several days in a row, his crew ate only prepackaged military meals; they also went 10 long days without a shower. But living conditions weren’t the hardest part, he said.

“We were away from cell phone service and you could go days without talking to anyone back home,” he said.

“At the same time, you meet a lot of great people when you’re out there. I’ve created a lot of friendships from those trips. I have met a lot of great people.”

Mallory also says the hardship is worth it, especially when you’re talking to a rancher whose cattle might go hungry if the fire spreads.

“You know you’re making a difference,” he said.

As they work in other states, Michigan firefighters gain valuable experience and earn additional certifications. For example, Mallory started his firefighting career as a key man – a temporary, on-call firefighter – during the Upper Peninsula’s Duck Lake Fire in 2012. Since then, he has worked fires in Georgia and Missouri as well and earned certifications to become a crew leader.

“I was a little nervous when I first got out there, I didn’t know what to expect,” Mallory said of being a crew leader. “But when you work with a team you can trust, it gives you peace of mind.”

The Department of Natural Resources is fully reimbursed for all costs associated with sending firefighters on out-of-state blazes. Learn more about DNR firefighting efforts at michigan.gov/firemanagement.

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Post travels the Beartooth Highway


We asked our readers on Facebook to tell us how they celebrated the Fourth of July. Shannon Maurer said they took the Post with them to celebrate the holiday! “We are enjoying our holiday on the Beartooth Highway and we brought the Post with us,” she wrote. “It is in Montana and Wyoming.”

According to Wikipedia, the Beartooth Highway is an All-American Road on a section of U.S. Route 212 in Montana and Wyoming between Red Lodge and the Northeast entrance of Yellowstone National Park, passing over the Beartooth Pass at 10,947 feet above sea level.

Thanks so much, Shannon, for taking us with you!

Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

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The Post travels to Montana


n-post-travels-montana-art-smith

Art Smith brought along his Cedar Springs Post while on an elk hunt in Montana with his brother Steve Smith and other family members. Art rode 8 miles on a mule to a tent camp, and hunted in the Lewis & Clark National Forest in the Bob Marshal Wilderness. He said that one elk and two deer were taken in the camp.

Thanks, so much, Art, for taking us with you!

This year the Post has traveled all over the world with our readers, visiting locations with our readers such as various cities in Arizona; the Adirondack Mountains; Atlanta, Georgia; Bay City, Mich.; Boston, Mass.; California; China; Colorado; Florida; Hoover Dam; Makcinac Island; Montana; New York City; Pictured Rocks; the Ryder Cup; South Dakota; Washington D.C.; West Virginia; Wyoming; Colombia; the Caribbean, Panama; Germany; Italy; France; Greece; Turkey; Haiti; Japan; Iceland; Nepal; Scotland; and Sweden.

Where will we go next year? It’s up to you!

Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

 

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The Post travels to Montana


N-Post-travels-to-Montana-George-fcDan George took his son, Hunter, to the Pintler Wilderness of Montana for some “outside the classroom” education, and they took the Post with them. This was Hunter’s first trip to the West, and his first elk hunt. Dan has hunted the area for years.

“I don’t think he really understands how much this means to me,” said Dan, “but he will when he takes his boy or girl some day.”

Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

 

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