I woke up at 4:00 a.m. the morning of June 20. The wind was rocking the truck. I tried to look out and all I could see was white. It was a blizzard. The wind had been blowing so hard that it pasted the snow on all of the truck windows. I was sleeping in my truck this trip, because it was warmer.
I took an ipad with me on this trip, so I checked the weather. There was a pretty big snow cloud above the top of the mountain where we were. I started to worry if we would be able to get out. Not that there would be that much snow (although at that time I did not know how much was on the ground), but that it would make the roads impossible to travel on. The roads down the mountain get very slippery when if just wet a little.
I mentally went through my list of things I had with me. Yes, I had enough food if I was to get stuck up here for another night. The one thing I did forget on this trip was my camp stove. I do not like to make a fire when I am on the mountain. The wind comes up so fast, and the chance of a campfire going out of control is great. So I never do it. But, I thought if there is snow on the ground, I may be tempted if we were stranded. A cup of hot coffee would be good.
After spending a while worrying, I decided there was nothing I could do (or see) so I went back to sleep.
I woke up with the sound of Linda pounding on my window. I think it was 6 am. She said the horses were starting to run right past us and head down the mountain! I put on my boots, grabbed my camera and jumped out!
It was a magical sight! The sun came out for a short time and made the light against the snow and horses beautiful!
I had only seen Cappuccino and his band once this trip. It was late one night, so I did not take any photos of them. It was nice to see them again in the daylight.
Every band that came by was full of energy. They all seemed to be heading down the mountain, to get out of the snow and wind.
Next to come running by was Coronado and his band.
I was worried that Dove was not with the band. But she finally caught up to them.
Next was Tecumseh and Gringo and his band. Gringo allowed Tecumseh to get pretty close to his old band before he finally drove him further off.
We started to pack up camp. We were debating if we should wait a while, or head down. The dark clouds were all around us and the wind was cold. It was 31 degrees with 20 mile an hour winds. We decided to head down the mountain after we checked on Lakota. After all, we had had an amazing 4 days on the mountain. We could stay there and try and find the horses. It seemed most where heading down the mountain to stay in the trees out of the snow and wind. We decided why bother spending a cold day looking for horses when we had seen every band on the top over the last 4 days. Plus, it also seemed like a smart thing to do with the way the weather was.
As I finished packing up the tent, I looked down the road towards Penn’s Cabin. I could see 4 horses working their way towards us. It was the Forest Service Boys! Hamlet, Hernando and Inali. They had one more with them, Irial.
The first thing we did when we got down off the mountain in Bridger, Montana was get a hot cup of coffee!
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