Sunday, October 12, 2014


Click pictures to enlarge 

Come over for dinner tonight she said, we are having Fleischkuechle. These were the words of Deanne Finken the day before we were to leave their farm in Douglas North Dakota. Those of you that know me know that I am more than a little bit picky about what I eat. My initial thought was “Hell no, if I can’t pronounce it or spell it, I ain’t eating it!” Then I reminded myself that Barb and I vowed to live more adventurously and step outside of our comfort zone once in a while. Deanne went on to say that Fleischkuechle (Flesh-Keek-Luh) is a German pastry that has been made in her family for years. I “googled” it to learn how to spell it and found this description: “Fleischkuechle is a Germans from Russia meat pie that is popular around the Dakotas. It is so popular in some places that you can go to a local Dairy Queen and get it, I hear it even outsells hamburgers.”  The picture below is exactly how Deanne’s looked as well.  Regardless of the fact that I still cannot spell it and can barely pronounce it, it was delicious!
The next morning, after a little over a week on the Finken farm, we packed everything up for our trek to Medora North Dakota. Bob, Deanne, Dillon, Chris and Holly were great hosts and we truly enjoyed our time with them.
The four hour trip to Medora was a little longer than it needed to be as we decided to take out time and try a little more scenic route. It is interesting to see the terrain change from prairie potholes to rugged hills and bluffs. Arriving at the Cottonwood Campground in Theodore Roosevelt National Park we set up our campsite and had an early afternoon cocktail. As we were sitting there we realized…..this is the first time we have been alone since we were in the Blackhills last April! Since then we have either been staying with friends, family or had been up at Pasha Lake Cabins in Canada. With no place to be, no one to visit and no one looking for minnows, it was quiet, peaceful and kind of surreal. Barb and I had a toast sitting outside the rig watching the sunset and enjoyed the moment. 

The campground itself is very nice. Situated along the Little Missouri River, there are quite a few pull through campsites. However, there were probably only 6 that would fit our 40’ rig. There is potable water located at the entrance to the campground and with no power, we relied on our solar battery bank for all our power during our stay. Cell service was limited but we were able to get a couple bars and 3G with our Millenicom Jetpack. Being off season the daily rate was only $5/day which was a definite bonus.

The following day we were on a mission to explore the park and look for some local geocaches. There was only one problem, they don’t allow geocaches within the park boundaries. We were able to find some “virtual geocaches” within the park that provided clues to the next one and eventually led a geocache outside the park boundary. Each of the virtual locations led to scenic areas within the park, then you had to use the coordinates of that location and add some numbers provided in the clue to get the coordinates to the next location. It took us a good ½ day to find and walk to these locations but we had planned on seeing as much of the park as possible so it was time well spent. We saw some spectacular scenery and quite a bit of wildlife. Buffalo were quite abundant and were on the road several occasion. On one occasion we actually had to navigate through a herd on the road that would not move out of the way. Barb was sitting on the roof through the sunroof taking pictures.  Most of the buffalo could care less if you drive by them but there was one bull in particular that was not happy that we were within a couple feet of him and kinda growled as we went by. For a moment I thought he was going to ram the truck! By early afternoon we had visited all the virtual locations within the park and had the clues necessary to figure out the coordinates for the actual cache outside the park.

That big one in the middle was not  happy when we passed him!

"Almost got Honey, just one more step back"
After lunch (and watching the Gophers beat Northwestern!) we headed out to find the geocache outside the park. It was along a lake about 16 miles from our campsite with a trove of treasures located inside a metal ammo box. People put the weirdest things inside geocaches, this one had; the log book, a pair of pliers, a tape measure, a matchbox car and a few business cards. According to the log book it had been placed there in 2003 and had only been found twice in the past year. We added our name to the log book and added probably the most valuable thing in the cache to date…..a free drink chip to the Thirsty Otter in Balsam Lake Wisconsin!

Tomorrow we pack up and head south towards the Black hills, where we will stop is anybody's guess. Barb is doing some research on where we will stop tomorrow as I write this and watch the Vikings getting whooped again!
Wild horses in the prairie

I want a backrub too!

Who wants a backrub?

Win Canyon Sand Sculptures


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