What Kind of Future for Our Children

It was Tatonka Iyotanka better known as Sitting Bull of the Lakota people who said: “Let us put our minds together and see what life we can make for our children.” That questions comes to us today what future, what life are we going to leave for our children. outofdarknesstohope  That link goes to my go fund me page to help me continue serving others and making a better future for our children. I have spent most of my life in service to others. I have worked on conservation issues in Florida. Worked with the Homeless in Montana. Worked against health disparities on Native American Reservations and with hunger relief in Tennessee. I have chances to keep serving.  In Nebraska I have an opportunity to work preserving wildlands, helping a town convert to 100% renewable energy and against the effects of the keystone pipeline. Or in the Dakotas and Montana working on Hunger Relief and developing food sovereignty programs with Native American peoples. What stopping me is the money it takes to relocate: rent utilities moving itself although i am a minimalist so my possessions will fit in my car lol. If you can help even in a small way please do. I love helping people, I am passionate about making this world better for our children, Its where my heart is. If you can help even if its just resharing this post or offering words of encouragement please do. Its awkward asking for help believe me. Thank you for reading love, peace, and happiness to you all. If you don’t wish to help this way please find a way to serve in your own community and make the future bright for children everywhere.

Hiking Pow Wows and What I’ve been Up too

Sorry for the long delay between posts. I am finishing up my schooling in Forest/Rangeland Wildlife Management, Preparing for an Appalachian Trail Thru Hike in April of 2017 and working full time. My days are work, hike, schoolwork, sleep, and repeat lol. I have found some time for seeing Native American Dancers and Exploring beautiful hiking spots here in Tennessee here are some photographs from the last few months:

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Phipps Bend Wildlife Area–by never completed TVA nuclear plant.

Located along the Holston River near Rogersville TN Phipps bend is a small refuge with a gravel  hiking trail with interesting wildlife, scenery, and eerie ruins of an abandoned nuclear plant. Here is the start of the trail.

DSCN0499 DSCN0500 DSCN0502 Next is a pond whether it is entirely natural or was dug or enhanced to be part of a cooling pond for the nuclear plant is unclear.

DSCN0503 either way it is a pretty spot.

Here rising like some modern age Stonehenge is the ruins of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) nuclear plant construction was halted in 1984.

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The deer don’t seem to care though I saw 8 white tail on a 4 mile hike so 2 deer a mile isn’t bad.

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and it provided for some interesting shots along the way.

DSCN0508 DSCN0514 looking up at the high tension lines the framework of the towers looks like a star shape.


Scenes from the Tennessee Mountains

Scenes from Warriors Path State Park

DSCN0270 DSCN0273 DSCN0275 DSCN0276 DSCN0277 Next Scenes from the Cherokee National Forest around South Holston Lake-Jacob’s Creek and Little Oak Recreation Areas.

DSCN0361 DSCN0371 S. Holston Lake with Iron Mountain Range in background DSCN0375 DSCN0377 DSCN0378

Being in nature always restores my soul. I love the happy light heartedness of the doe with twin fawns, the ancient timelessness of the mountains and the cool serenity of the mountain lakes with their amazing shades of blue and green water.

Day 2 Miles City Montana to Ft. Robinson Nebraska


The above photos are from the sunrise as I left out of Miles City Mt. Also the 10 minutes of light sprinkles was the only rain I saw on the whole trip not bad for late October travel.   It was an amazing trip God was so good the more I travelled the more my worries melted away. As St. Paul said to St. Timothy “where does this spirit of fear from not from God!” Fear keeps us from doing so much in life, keeps us from so much joy and excitement and wonder. God said He came to give us an abundant joyful life and to set free the captives. Don’t let fears and worries hold you captive and keep you from enjoying life.

SONY DSCThis shot shows the entire town of Volborg Montana. Post office, General Store, and Dance hall all in one. Just as in frontier days in many of these small isolated towns these buildings are the heart of the community. Its where relationships are made, communities bond, and life happens.

SONY DSCThe Powder River outside of Broadus Montana. If you were a fur trapper, explorer or a cowboy on the long cattle drives from Texas you know you had reached the Montana Territory when you crossed the Powder River.

SONY DSC SONY DSC On the left is the little one room schoolhouse, many of which are still in operation throughout the west, by the roadside picnic area I stopped for breakfast. It was a pretty spot to relax. The soft ever present sighing of the wind on the high plains and the honking of hundreds of geese on a nearby pond. The geese were doing what I was doing taking a break from the trip as they made their way south before winter. On the right is the main attraction of Alzada Montana the last town in southeastern Montana before you hit the Wyoming border. Its the Stoneville Saloon who advertises cheap drinks and lousy food 🙂

SONY DSC A little abandoned church in Northeastern Wyoming where the Black Hills creep across the border into Wyoming. One observation on this trip: Far to many abandoned churches and schools in communities while the bars thrive I think it speaks to the moral and educational decline we see in our country.


Above our some nice pics from my stop at Devil’s Tower. Well worth the 10 dollar admission price. Truly a remarkable site and beautiful park. Awe inspiring. Met lots of nice people and took pics of a family and they took pics of me including the awesome photo bomb by the daughter! 🙂

SONY DSC SONY DSCTwo of my favorite pics from the trip. I love how the Tower looks in black and white. It reminds of scenes from the old cowboy movies I watched as a kid. I got to have a good conversation with Hans a German tourist about faith and  life in the American west. He also was learning that out west  just up the road can mean a drive of several hours not a few minutes like in Europe hehe.

SONY DSC The Pine Ridge Community Church in Wyoming’s Black Hills a more beautiful setting to worship God is hard to imagine.

SONY DSCCourthouse in New Castle Wyoming. the whole town is just that pretty take time on your trip to stop , explore, and say hello

SONY DSC SONY DSC. Ft Robinson state park Nebraska. The view from the long porch on the 2nd floor outside my room. It was beautiful and peaceful writing my daily travel journey and reading from the good book as the sun set and the coyotes began to howl. The park was closed when I got there but my reservation was taped to the office door with a warm note from the staff that my key was in the room the lights and heater were on and everything was ready for me. Bet that doesn’t happen in a big city. No one has taught western Nebraskans that you can’t trust everyone and I hope its a lesson they never have to learn. I helped an older couple who pulled up after dark when everything was closed and they weren’t sure where to go or what to do. I showed them where their reservation was taped like mine on the door and showed them where there room was. I was reading from the bible when I saw them pull up and wonder around confused. It just shows if you approach each day saying God show me how to be helpful and show Your love to someone there will be an opportunity. They were so grateful. They like me were tourists from out of state and thought everything was closed and they were going to have to drive unknown roads in the dark looking for a place to stay. Ft Robinson is a beautiful fun spot, a must visit for anyone especially with kids. More pics and info about the park in the next post.

Relaxing Drives and Peaceful Spots

Last weekend it was a quest to find a peaceful spot in the mountains close to where I live. I think I succeeded it was very relaxing by the little beaver pond and as a bonus ripe wild huckleberries to pick.

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This weekend it was to take some relaxing rides down roads I had never been on before I found two of them one between Rudyard and Big Sandy Montana and the other between Chester and Ft Benton Montana. Bonus find the Dancing Beagle Cafe and Bakery which just opened 2 weeks before and has great food and friendliest staff around!! If you are travelling Hwy 2 across Montana pull off into Rudyard and eat that Dancing Beagle –isn’t that the best name for a cafe 😀

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many of my photos are available for purchase at my webstore at www.zazzle.com/shadowriverphoto