Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Ousel Falls

Ousel Falls is a set of waterfalls near Big Sky, Montana. All of them spectacular in their unique way. The highlight of this spot is the main falls which is accessible by a set of stairs. That alone makes it awesome. So many falls out here are off the side of a mountain, so you can't get right up close to them nor can you hike down to the base of the falls. Like another one of my favorites, Grotto Falls, you can get pretty close to these falls. And the views are just gorgeous. The overall hike is about two miles, but I had a hard time being in a hurry. I climbed up the trails that follow the rivers edge above the falls and found a rock to sit on and just photographed the water for about an hour. All I wanted to do was sit there and take in the breathtaking view around me.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Bannack State Park

About a week ago I mustered up the nerve to go down to Bannack State Park. One, it's quite the drive, and while adventures are fun, striking out such a distance on one's own can be a bit daunting. More importantly though, this is a ghost town which is preserved by the state. The site is supposed to be haunted, so I would have been happy to have a little company. I had been talking to some friends and was under the impression that there were some park personnel around at least. Not so when I showed up. Deserted. Not a soul in sight. Just as spine tingling spooky as I thought it would be.

An entirely deserted ghost town is great for atmosphere, but not so great for steady photographs. I will admit to sticking close to the main street. You can walk around back and view even more buildings, but I didn't feel comfortable doing so. Also, I was confused as to whether the place was open or not. (It's technically not until Mid-May.) Some buildings were locked up tight and some had their doors wide open. That was not helping my nerves any either.  No, I did not fall for the invitation and walk into those empty buildings. A) Not sure I was supposed to. B) Didn't know who had left the door open.  Ghosts or humans?  Either way, I wasn't about to satisfy my curiosity.  I figured some things are better left alone.

I really liked the decorational piece above the door on this house.  I had trouble identfying the property using the guide book, though.  I think it is the site where the first governor's mansion was.  However, I don't believe this is that house.  The guide book states that the governor's mansion burned down and the governor and his wife spent the rest of their stay in Montana in a small sod roofed building.  That building is still present behind this one.

This is the masonic building / school house.  The plaque above the door states that the Masonic hall is on the 2nd floor and the school is on the first.

This is one of the more striking buildings in Bannack.  Before it became the Meade Hotel, it was the courthouse.  Apparently it is haunted, but I didn't spot anything.

You can find out more about Bannack State Park at the following links:

Welcome to Bannack State Park

Legends of America - Bannack

View Larger Map