Sunday, June 28, 2015

Three Forks Swimming Hole - Jefferson River

We were running low on groceries and it was time for me to go shopping at the local market.  Gerry still didn't feel like going so she wrote up a list and trusted me to fill it at the store.

I decided to pick up a few geocaches somewhat along the way to the market and off I went.  All in all I found 4 caches in a short order.  One cache was on a bridge, but when we went there a couple days ago the bridge was full of teenagers jumping into the Jefferson River.

It was more crowded today and most of them were families with not so many on the bridge.  It looks like the river is fairly shallow in this area and the two people wading in the middle would be a good gauge.

 This is the bridge where the cache was hidden and it was clear so I casually walked out and took some pictures to cover up what I was up to.  The GPS was spot on and the cache was hidden in the beam on the left.  One of the easier finds of the day so I was happy to grab it.

 This is a photo of the river on it's way to meet the Missouri river about a mile downstream.  The Gallatin, Madison and Jefferson rivers meet up to form the Missouri river.  Lewis & Clark camped at the confluence of the three rivers and had to make a decision on which river to continue their trek to the Pacific Ocean.

 Farming and railroading are the two main industries in the area. This old grain elevator on a railroad track combine both of these functions.

 The old caboose is the home of the tourist information center.  It was in very good condition and well maintained. 

The Sacajawea Hotel is a grand place nestled into one of the most important places in the history of Lewis and Clark. Three Forks, the Headwaters to the Missouri River, is the place where Sacajawea was reunited with her brother and afforded the Lewis and Clark Party the opportunity to continue their journey by providing goods and safe passage through hostile territory. Long after Lewis and Clark were gone and the west was being settled, the town of Three Forks emerged as an important stop on the Milwaukee Railroad at the turn of the 20th century.

In 1910 a purchasing agent for the Milwaukee Railroad named John Q. Adams, built the hotel as a rest stop for passengers and train crews on the railroad that ran from Wisconsin to the Pacific. The core of the hotel is the old Madison House, which was built in 1882 in Old Town Three Forks, closer to the headwaters. John Q. Adams ordered a contractor to drag that building into New Town Three Forks by a horse team. Local legend has it that the construction of the hotel was held up when the contractor  lost his horse team in a poker game. The Madison House eventually made it and was split in two, and Bozeman architect Fred Wilson designed the rest of the hotel around those two halves.
From the early 20th century to the 21st, the Sacajawea Hotel has weathered economic hardships, snow, and many different owners, trying to bring life back to the old hotel. In 2001, the Sacajawea was closed, boarded up, and sad. However, recently the Sacajawea Hotel has been brought back to life with a top to bottom renovation. The Folkvord Family, a three generational farming family in the valley, purchased the hotel in 2009. The Family had high hopes of restoring the amazing building to its fine grandeur of the 1900’s, combined with modern amenities, reviving the hotel to her original glory. The renovation took 8 months, and now proudly boasts 29 luxury guest rooms with spa like amenities, two full service bars, meeting space, wedding venues, and Montana’s finest new steakhouse, “Pompey’s Grill”. The Sacajawea Hotel is rapidly gaining a reputation as “one of the finest historic hotels in the west”. Nominated as the only Montana property to join as a member of the Historical Hotels of America, as well as receiving the 2011 Historic Preservation Award of Excellence. Elegant and tasteful furnishings combined with the friendliest staff to be found in Montana, the experience at The Sacajawea Hotel is one not to be forgotten.

I found it easier to copy the history of the Sacajawea Hotel rather than to describe it myself.  It is a very impressive building sitting on Main Street.  

The market was very well stocked and had reasonable prices for being so far out in the country.  I managed to find everything on the list and as a special treat for us, a Key Lime Pie found it's way into the market basket.  It was great when we sampled it later in the evening.  Almost as good as Public grocery store's Key Lime Pie,  -- Almost.

We managed to arrive here in Three Forks during their hottest week of the summer with temps +20 degrees above average.  Great!  Notice that yesterday was 110 degrees.

Time to get out of Dodge -  Three Forks that is.

That was our day how was yours?

1 comment:

  1. I just can't get over how hot it is up there. The only good thing about it is the cooling down at night. I don't consider 89 as a low as cooling off.