We wound up finding this isolated rest stop about 40 minutes into Montana. Apparently (found this out later), Montana is known for their rest stops. Calling this rest stop epically awesome is an understatement. Not only was it spotless, but it had individual bathrooms so every person could have their own bathroom with a toilet, sink, baby changing station, baby safety seat, trash, electric sockets, hand dryer, and a LOT of space. Also there were electric sockets in the main hall area, as well as water, vending machines, a big map, and trash. Outside were picnic tables and an incredible view. Did I mention how clean it was? It was so clean it is worth mentioning twice.
The only thing creepy about it was we were the ONLY people there all night, and it was in pitch blackness. The wind was whipping around and the temp dropped down to 40ish. Since we couldn’t see the landscape, it felt like we were on top of a mountain (we weren’t but we were at about 8,500 ft. so close enough). I actually slept pretty well (we Yamped), but I did wake up about 8 times convinced I was about to be eaten by a Sasquatch.
Obviously we weren’t eaten. In the morning though, we did take advantage of the electric plugs in the building and heat up some ginger chicken soup I had brought with us (one of my canning experiments) on our $8 electric burner. We had a nice sink shower as well and got to really clean up nicely with the soothing hot water from the pristine Montana sinks.
Montana Rained on my Parade
The only bad thing about this whole stay is that it was freezing and pouring rain. While it made for some pretty cozy weather since we both love rain, it did throw a wrench in our plans for the next few days. We were supposed to go up to Glacier National Park and see… well.. glaciers. The weather forecase for the next four days or so though was rain, and aside from being really nasty up there, the visibility was really low. We decided to flip our trip around instead and head straight to Washington, and then make a special trip back to Glacier instead of driving through Oregon. (Sorry Oregon 🙁 )
So, after a nice rest, we got back on the road and headed to Washington – whooeee! We made some stops in Montana along the way to shoot some pictures and talk to locals. I spent about an hour at a gas station talking to a really interesting woman. We visited some ghost towns as well and scenic overlooks. Gahh Montana is so beautiful, even in cruddy weather!
Then we power drove and made it through Montana, Idaho and into Washington by nightfall, where we decided to stay at an actual brick and mortar location. I had dosed up on some Vitamin C and that plus the soup were helping, but I still felt like I was fighting a bug and wanted a good night’s sleep to help my immune system kick it before I actually got full blown sick. We stayed at the Top Hat Motel which I highly recommend. It was impeccably clean, in fact I have never seen a motel so clean in my life I think. The rates were extremely affordable, and the showers were glorious, with nice hot water, and ample pressure. Also, they only had a double queen room left, so we got it and decided to both be queens and take a bed each for ourselves. I’ll tell you what, there’s nothing like sleeping in a Toyota Yaris for a few days to make you appreciate spreading out in a queen sized bed, mmhmm.