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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Turkey Day trot, with pictures

Tall man says a Thanksgiving howdy from the exact spot, including the exact trees, of the original tall man picture, about 7-1/2 miles into this circumnavigation and summiting of Mount Helena.

Here are three deer I met on the way down — survivors of the city of Helena's purge-by-gunfire of the urban herd.

Here's the pre-dawn view north from Mount Helena's peak, toward the locally famous Sleeping Giant on the far horizon.

A pre-dawn view eastward up the Missouri River valley from the top of Mount Helena on Thanksgiving morning.

The first two not-very-nice women who showed up right after my arrival at the peak chug up the Hogback Trail before dawn.

I'm writing this a couple of days after the fact, just because I didn't have a picture-handling computer in Helena, but I did my own Burn the Bird run on Thanksgiving: A circumnavigation of Mount Helena, with a summit about two-thirds of the way through.

As my two or three loyal readers know, I have had a cold/flu thing going on for the past week, and so haven't run — and have given up on my string of 10 or so 100-plus mile months.

Even so, I got up at 6 a.m. or so, at C's sister's house east of Last Chance Gulch, and headed up the hill. I met no one on the way up, but a couple (not particularly friendly) arrived minutes after I did, and three older (my age) women and two dogs showed up a couple of minutes later. They were 50-60-year-old hags (sorry, but they were singularly unfriendly, even dismissive). Watching a gorgeous sunrise over a fog-shrouded valley would seem to me to be a shared, pleasant experience. Instead, they were in a bitchy discussion of the po-folks who go out and shop on Black Friday, while they, the enlightened rich, I'm guessing (first clue: a tartan wool body shroud on the yippy little dog that showed up first), were outside, doing meaningful, life-preserving activities.

The little dog seemed eager to share my gorp, but its mistress advised me against sharing. I did watch the sun rise while atop the mountain. The "ladies" acknowledged it, but seemed more interested in shopping gossip. The only thing I would credit them with is hiking to the top of the mountain before dawn. Otherwise, even though we're of similar ages, I'd dismiss them as petty pigs. Actually, one woman lagged the other two, and she seemed nicer. I'm sure the other two diss her as a laggard.

Anyway, I did make it to the top without walking, and I enjoyed the morning immensely. Ran into three nice little deer on the way down, and had a perfectly wonderful (as usual) holiday, including meals and watching a great Husker game, at my "in-laws" home in the capital city.

8-1/2; 8-1/2; 60; 1318-1/2
Posted by Mose, 5:16 PM


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