Okay, so, the Frank Zappa reference aside, I was poised to make my way to Montana.
The weather for the entire trip, thus far, has been perfect, and that would hold true for my drive from Buffalo to Missoula. I hit the road at about 9:30am, headed west.
This drive was proving to be one of those drives that you make only because you have to. It's the only way to get from Point A to Point B. Occasionally something of interest pops up, but the fact of the matter is that it's just not an exciting drive.
One thing that breaks up the monotony of the drive, though, is Little Big Horn Battlefield National Monument. This wouldn't be my first visit here; I'd stopped here back in 2013 during a cross country drive from Portland, Oregon to Pennsylvania.
Little Big Horn is, of course, where General George Custer's 7th Cavalry made its final stand against warriors of the Lakota, northern Cheyenne and Arapaho nations during the infamous "Custer's Last Stand".
|The monument atop Last Stand Hill marks the final place of over 200 U.S. Aemy troops... |
The majority of the battlefield is a wide expanse of land, pockmarked by marble markers. These markers, despite their appearance, aren't gravestones. They're simply where they are to mark the approximate site where either an Army soldier or native American fell. The ones marking Army soldiers are white, the native American are a dark pink, almost maroon color. Also, the native American markers contain the name of the individual. Army markers do not.
Also located at Little Big Horn is the aptly named Custer National Cemetery. By "national cemetery" standards it's quite small. Approximately 5,000 people are buried here:
|Custer National Cemetery|
Finally, there are wild horses to be found at Little Big Horn. I've never been close enough, but I'm told they can be quite nasty. Instead, rely on a long telephoto lens to get photos of them. They're pretty spectacular.
So, if you happen to find yourself driving along I-90 in Montana, take the opportunity to visit the site of one of the most storied battles in American history. It's worth the time, effort and money, and it's only about 1/4 mile off of the interstate, so it's very road trip friendly.