Double Spring Community founded late 1700’s


The following few pics are from a scouting trip and serve as introduction to a small little community in the mountains of Tennessee with a lot of history. Stay tuned for some more pics as I explore the area and learn more of its history.

The double springs for which the community was named are still there near the John Jones house one of the old pioneer families. The double springs were used by Cherokee and other Native Americans and used against them when Colonel William Christian camped there using the springs as his base in a campaign against the Cherokee who allied with the British during the American Revolution October 1-4 1776. He also made one of the first peace treaties between the Cherokee and settlers on the Long Island of the Huston River nearby in Tennessee.  He went on to found with his wife Ft William which protected Louisville KY from Native American raids and in 1785 settled on land awarded for his service in the Revolution He only enjoyed his land for a year before being killed in action against the Wabash Indians in 1786. Across from his campsite is the Double Spring Missionary Baptist Church founded in 1786 to serve the settlers already living there in this very old community just a few miles from my house. Below is a picture of the church with its unique bell tower.

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Following are two scenes one of a ranch and a second of a small farm little changed from pioneer days.

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Exploring the Frontier–Havre MT to Miles City Montana


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A beautiful sunrise in Chinook Montana to start my exploration. Everyday of the journey was amazing and everyday started with something special. This beautiful sunrise the 1st day, the bald eagle flying up from the roadside on the second day, and something awesome each day. The journey covered 3,275 miles and 12 states. It was a journey to find myself, my faith, and my country and share the spectacular beauty and people of America with my followers in the USA and around the world. Also I hope to inspire people to overcome fear and misconceptions and follow their dreams where ever they lead you. To many of us avoid doing what we want or need because of anxiety and fear. Fear of the unknown is one of the greatest most challenging fears we must overcome in life. Follow my story and may it inspire you to follow your own path no matter what the challenges. Open your hearts and minds for new adventures and experiences and follow along and be inspired to create your own adventures.

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The above scenes are from the James Kipp recreation area where the mighty Missouri River flows through the Charles M Russell Wildlife Refuge in the Missouri Breaks area of Montana. Before the bridge over the Missouri was constructed in the middle of the last century ferries where the only way to cross the Missouri. They were dependable providing the water wasn’t to low, to high, or frozen over lol. James Kipp was a fur trader and steam boat captain born in 1788 in Montreal. He explored this area of Montana in the 1820’s and established in 1831 FT Piegan on the Marias River to trade with the Piegan or Blackfeet Indians in the region. I thought it was awesome for this modern day explorer to stop and have breakfast at the site where a pioneering explorer camped.  Just south of this area along the Musselshell River was also Ft Musselshell. A short lived fur trading fort where Sioux and Assiboine Warriors would often take shots at unwary whites. SONY DSC SONY DSC  One of the many old pioneer homes one can discover throughout the west. A symbol both of the harsh conditions facing the early pioneers and of the struggle of many frontier areas to maintain their populations in modern times. SONY DSC The historic Garfield Motel in Jordan Montana. Jordan is the most isolated county seat in America. The county has a population of around 1,200 which is nearly 3 times the size of neighboring Petroleum County MT with a population of 412. If you find yourself in Jordan stop at the Jordan Coffee and Gift shop. Friendly people good coffee in all varieties. Its one of the reasons I love Montana. Where else can a sophisticated lady by herself a chai tea while browsing the latest styles of concealed carry hand bags, in newest Aztec motif 🙂  Good advice for life at a sign on this store. Picture of a handgun with the words “Stay calm and carry” below it. Reminds me of the old pioneer saying: “Trust God but keep your powder dry” SONY DSC SONY DSC These two pics are the Angela Post office still in business and an abandoned early 1900s church at Angela Montana. When its 100s of miles to the next community of any size the post offices, churches, country stores, and bars become the center of many of these small frontier communities their life lines to connect to each other and the world.SONY DSC I love that the Cohagen Montana Bar, only one of two buildings in Cohagen has a squirt soda sign as its marquee. It also has a payphone across the street. It is many long miles to any where and any one else I wonder if you are stuck out their and need to use the payphone who do you call?SONY DSC SONY DSC SONY DSC SONY DSC The first photo in this series is the Yellowstone River as it flows through Miles City Montana. The Yellowstone is the longest free flowing river (undammed) in America. The horses are grazing behind the Range Riders Museum in Miles City. Well worth the stop the museum has an amazing collection of frontier buildings, pioneer objects, Native American Artifacts, and a stunning collection of 400 historic firearms. The last 2 photos are from my campsite along the banks of the Tonque River which flows into the Yellowstone River at Miles City.

Its been said that generally at the end of your life you will regret far more the things you didn’t do in life then the things you did. This has been the case in my life, but I decided that before I got to old to have adventures I was going to seize the days and have adventures and go exploring and overcome my fears and find my faith and when I am old at the end of my days I will have at least great stories to tell. Hope everyone enjoys this and has fun following my adventures.

Exploring Frontier America Travel Adventure


So everyone keep me in thoughts prayers and good wishes. I will be starting on a new cross country tour October 24th.  I plan on a year long exploration of America. Its small towns and backroads and scenic places. Other than a small stay with family through the holiday season I will be out on the road exploring rural America travelling camping sightseeing.  I want to see if its really hell to live in Hell North Dakota or if the people of Paradise Kansas have found their own slice of heaven. To know if Stinking Water Creek really stinks or why Bad Axe is called Bad Axe or why Two Dot isn’t three dot or no dot. To see the historic spots that dot our countryside not just read about them. To man up and have adventures and test myself.  To see all the wonderful parks and scenic areas of our nation. To explore the frontier areas of are nation, those counties with less than 5 people per square mile and talk to them and find out what its like where they live. I already live in a frontier area in Montana. Mostly I just want to see and experience America and talk to the people and write their stories and share my photos. Look for new blog updates starting at the end of the month.

Email me or comment on here your thoughts and any suggestions you have. I am interested in out of the way places and small town rural America. 

Roamin the Back Country


Saturday was sort of like the plot for Gilligan’s Island, it was supposed to be a 3 hour tour lol but I just kept thinking oh I’ll go a little farther and 7 1/2 hours later I pulled into home. I was just going to drive out to Judith Landing on the Missouri River so I’ll make the first set of pictures the route from Big Sandy Montana down into the Upper Missouri Breaks at Judith Landing. The first are some farm scenes from along the route. This is known as Judith Basin country a large string of valleys and plains between several different mountain ranges. The two ranges seen in these photos are the Bear’s Paw and the Highwood Mountains. Its harvest time for wheat and hay.

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Next are some scenes as you descend from the high plains down into the Missouri Breaks the canyons and ravines carved by the Mighty Missouri River. Judith Landing and the surrounding area have a lot of history. It was a meeting spot for Blackfeet and Gros Ventres native peoples, Lewis & Clark camped there as well. Below is a picture of one of many pioneer little houses on the prairie and an abandoned schoolhouse near Iliad Montana.

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Heading down into the breaks.

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Some info on the history of the area and some more pioneer buildings. You may have to click on the sign pics to make them big enough to read but its easier on me than retyping all that info lol.

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The Missouri River at Judith Landing, a popular canoe, float drop off and pick up point.

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Horses!!

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The view from Clangon Hill 3900 feet heading up the other side to the top of the rims and some of the views on the next section of the drive from Judith Landing through Winifred. Haha anytime you see this type of sign you know you are on a great road for adventure.

The first pic is from the top of the hill looking down at the Judith Landing bridge and the Missouri far below. The mountains in the background are the Bear’s Paw…the mountains in the background of the other scene are the Judith Mountains. A few shots are from the little town of Winifred Montana founded in 1913 I will be back through there hopefully before the weather turns because the other route out of Winifred you can cross the Missouri on a ferry which I think would be cool. I like the old pioneer log cabin in these shots, it was a fancy one multiple rooms and two brick chimneys.

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The next shots is a scene with the Judith Mountains in t he background another area of Montana I want to explore more. There are shots of the square Butte Montana, the actual butte is a lacolith a dome of lava that welled up from its source Volcano some 25 miles away but never erupted. The town of Square Butte has a nice little restaurant the Square Butte country club which has great food and friendly people. The route I followed from Lewistown to Ft Benton through Square Butte and Geraldine was along the old Arrow Creek Stage line which was advertised as a pleasant 13 hour daylight stage coach trip 🙂 It takes an hour or so by car now lol. The school and jail you will see are in square butte the school was built in 1918 the jail in 1915.

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The picture on the right above is Square Butte on the left is a scene of the Judith Mountains.

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many of my photos are available for purchase on my website www.zazzle.com/shadowriverphoto

Year in Review –Favorite Shots


Its been just over a year since I started the blog and I just wanted to do a post reviewing some of my favorite shots and adventures.

This is my signature gearing up for adventure and whatever comes my way!

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Early 1900s 1 room schoolhouse at Loma, Montana

Early 1900s 1 room schoolhouse at Loma, Montana

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The above two shots I like because they show the two dominate historical cultures in Montana. The cliff painting from Montana’s First Peoples and an early one room schoolhouse that served the pioneers.

Next some of the scenery and wildlife of Montana

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Wildflowers of Montana

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Farmin Ranchin Rodeo faces and places of Montana

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Montana history from old pioneer homesteads to small towns to an unfinished command post designed to be a command and control post in a post Nuclear war rising on the empty plains of Montana.

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Favorite Drive though Hungry Horse Hollow


I love taking the 30 miles of dirt roads that run though the mountains between Havre and Chinook Montana. They have great names for one thing: Sucker Creek Rd. Clear Creek Rd. Hungry Horse Hollow. Crown Butte Rd. It has beautiful scenery as you run through the pine forests following the ridge line looking down at the ranches that dot the narrow valleys or dive down into the valleys following the creeks that run along the aspen groves. This is a winding sometimes narrow dirt/gravel road that runs through the mountains use some caution and common sense when driving it. Heavy rains can send those creeks over the roads, cause rock slides, and it is an open range area which means there may be cows or sheep on the road. Blaine County did a great job of clearing the wash outs and the rock slides from the flooding a few weeks ago. I do wish though they had put the following signs up so travelers could see them from both directions specifically the direction I was driving lol.

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Personally I think this is generally bad advice. Yes if there was a rock slide already in the road driving slow would let you stop better but in most other situations driving fast is better for example:

rock slide starting to happen:  faster is better to get out of the way 😉

muddy area: slow + mud = stuck trust me just gun it and go

water over road: don’t go fast or slow turn around its just not safe

deranged animals or people: faster is better!!

zombies:  faster

I mean really if you are in a danger zone why would you want to go slow and stay in the zone longer. Silliness I say!!

It is a beautiful series of valleys and mountians

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A great area for wildlife watching..I wish I could have gotten the pic of the largest golden eagle I have ever seen but he was over the ridge and gone before I could.

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Here are some of the sheep to which I had to yield the right of way too.

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If you love history there is a lot of pioneering history hear and several old barns and homesteads and other items.

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I love this shot of the windmill on the range. There is an interesting story to the aeromotor windmills. The company was founded in 1888 in Chicago. It is still in business today located in Texas and 80% of the windmills in the USA are aeromotor designs. They continue today with philanthropic works the founder of the company started with a trust that provides funds, scholarships, or grants to over 40 colleges and universities.

Following are some old barns and homesteads:

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I am sure before automobiles and roads there were some hungry days for horses and men back in hungry horse hollow 30 miles from town.

The last pictures are from the town of Lloyd Montana where the general store and post office were founded in 1890 and named for “old man Lloyd” a prospector and one of the first explorers of the area.

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