Chief Looking’s Village – Sonali’s Garden

Bismarck, North Dakota.

In August, 2015, Lynn and I were in Bismarck for a Civil Air Patrol activity. While there, I decided to scout around for a place to capture the sunset. What came of that evening’s exploration was an image of the Missouri River Valley captured by my cell phone. I’d gathered other images with my Nikon, but the cell phone capture above ended up being my favorite. The majority of images captured that day were featured in a blog post on macro photography as I spent some time in a small garden that was ablaze with summer flowers.  Continue reading

Buckstop Junction – The Buck Stops Here in Bismarck

Bismarck, North Dakota.

It’s harvest time in North Dakota and one of the annual activities of the season for a dozen years now, is Applefest, a celebration of autumn and a fundraiser for the Bismarck Cancer Center. Applefest this year was September 22 and 23 and as in years past was held at Buckstop Junction, a recreated pioneer village on the southeast end of the Bismarck metro area. Activities included everything from a pie eating contest to a 5K run and many more. Having recently stopped at a frontier village at Jamestown, on our way to Bismarck, we decided to check out Buckstop Junction. It was our good fortune to be there during Applefest 2018. Continue reading

But I Digress – Louis L’Amour, Favorite Son of Jamestown North Dakota

Jamestown, North Dakota.

One of the more interesting attractions in Jamestown’s Frontier Village (see last week’s Travel Tuesday post,) is the building known as Louis L’amour’s writing shack. The building has nothing to do with where he wrote as he left Jamestown as a teenager, but is instead an homage to his prolific writing. Born the last of seven children in the midwestern farming community of Jamestown, North Dakota, Louis spent the first fifteen years of his life there. Though he never finished high school, he was a self-educated man, for a short time a prize fighter, a hobo riding the American railroads, and eventually one of the most successful and prolific writers in the 20th century.  Continue reading

Frontier Village – A Drive Down Louis L’Amour Lane

Jamestown, North Dakota.

Over the years in our travels, we’ve stopped at recreated villages and historic towns in the old west from Goldfield and Tortilla Flat in Arizona to Deadwood, South Dakota and Cheyenne, Wyoming. North Dakota has a collection of villages that are great historic stops along the I-94 corridor. Bonanzaville in West Fargo focuses on the Bonanza farmers and homesteaders in the Red River Valley. Buckstop Junction in Bismarck highlights homesteaders and settlers put down roots in the Missouri River valley. Not to be left out, the largest community between Fargo and Bismarck has its own historic village. Continue reading

Cellpic Sunday – Rainbow Circles

Somewhere over North Dakota.

Yesterday I attended a meeting in Bismarck. This trip, I was a passenger and I left the flying duties to Chad, a flight instructor and head of our flight standards department in North Dakota Civil Air Patrol. The sun was behind us, still low in the sky, when we departed Fargo early in the morning aboard a Cessna 182. Reflected on the clouds ahead of us, we saw a circular rainbow. Over my two decades of flying, I’ve seen a few circular rainbows reflected on clouds below us. We were on an instrument flight plan which allowed us to remain at our altitude and fly through any clouds that happened to rise above our flight level. As we approached one of these higher cloud layers, I saw something I’d never seen before. We could clearly see the shadow of our aircraft on the cloud directly in the center of the circle. Continue reading

World’s Largest Buffalo – a 60-ton Giant in North Dakota

Jamestown, North Dakota.

Travel along the southern edge of our home state and unless you shun Interstates, you’ll find yourself on I-94. Crossing the Red River from Minnesota to North Dakota at Fargo, I-94 travels through Valley City, Jamestown, Bismarck, Dickinson and finally the small town of Beach where in just a few miles, it travels across the Montana border. Many years ago, we were westbound with the family and we noticed the giant buffalo on the southern edge of Jamestown. We pulled off the highway so our children could see the giant concrete sculpture. standing 26 feet (8 m) above the ground and high on a hill, it is an imposing work of art. Continue reading