Jim Hicks: It Could Be Another Crowded Summer On The Bighorns

If early numbers are an indicator, this may be another record year for campers locating in just about every conceivable place on the mountain.

Jim Hicks

June 03, 20214 min read

Bighorn mountains
(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

BUFFALO = Most years Memorial Day weekend is a “sure thing” for cool and raining weather on at least one day.

But the 2021 version produced some perfect conditions for all kinds of activities. And, if you happened to drive around some of the local recreation areas, it was evident people have broken out of COVID isolation and restrictions in droves.

Camping at the Mikesell-Potts recreation area was packed full and kids were enjoying the beach in the bay there in spite of some cold water temperatures.

Campers and recreation vehicles seemed to be all over the mountain.

The Bench Sitters are wondering why the Forest Service is allowing campers along the road to Gross Mountain just west of town. That is no doubt the most photographed wild flower meadow in the Bighorns (with the snow-covered peaks in the background). But not any longer.

Some say it’s because they have access to internet signal.  A few years ago, no one camped there.

If early numbers are an indicator, this may be another record year for campers locating in just about every conceivable place on the mountain. If you thought the invasion of out-of-state campers would disappear after the COVID restrictions were lifted . . . it may turn out that was just the beginning.

Last week about 30 members of a local classic car club make a tour to Jackson which included a stop at newly opened National Museum of Military Vehicles at Dubois. Carl and Lois Madden were in the group and they tell us it is a “must see” attraction with over 450 vehicles from Jeeps to tanks.

They recommend calling ahead and signing up for a guided tour.

“Just amazing,” they said.

And from the mailbag this week we wanted to share a few musings by Wes Buckmaster, a retired attorney who lives in South Dakota. If you have a few grey hairs, read it slowly and for most it will generate some personal thoughts.

When older there is an urge to yell at the top of the voice.

Yell for the things gained and lost.

Yell for loss of the things never gained.

Yell for the opportunities squandered.

Yell for the accomplishments realized and then lost.

Yell for the loss of values held dear in the past.

Yell for the worthlessness of long allegiances misplaced.

Yell for the confusion caused by a dimming trail where past aspirations have since dissipated in the mist.

Yell for the weaknesses which left footprints exposing reasons why things are as they are.

The reasons, yes the reasons, some having been in our control.

Some that never were.

And finally, this week we need to share some lines from the late Phyllis Diller sent our way from former residents Ken and Nadine Gross.

As your beauty fades, so will his eyesight.

Housework can’t kill you, but why take a chance?

Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing up is like shoveling the sidewalk before it stops snowing.

Best way to get rid of kitchen odors — Eat out.

I want my children to have all the things I couldn’t afford. Then I want to move in with them.

Most children threaten at times to run away from home. This is the only thing that keeps some parents going.

We spend the first twelve months of our children’s lives teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve years telling them to sit down and shut up.

His finest hour lasted a minute and a half.

I asked the waiter, ‘Is this milk fresh?’ He said, ‘Lady, three hours ago it was grass.’

You know you’re old if they have discontinued your blood type.

That last one gets big laughs at the Senior Center.  Get ready for a hot summer and we’ll write again next week.

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Jim Hicks