Taking highway 130 south of Saratoga, Bill rode to the Rendezvous Lodge. We met some great people there. We were planning to camp at a Forest Service campground we saw on the map. The first thing we asked was, "Can we keep a horse here." At first it appeared we could stay, but the volunteer host made us aware of strict park regulations against horses; there are plenty of animals in the forest, but horses aren’t welcome. We did see some new seedlings planted to fill in the grassy areas, but we would not set Blackies pen anywhere that was environmentally sensitive.
Luckily, Brenda drove down the road and was able to find a great little place along the road called the Rendezvous Lodge; set in a high valley. The people we met there were very welcoming and let us camp there. Blackie enjoyed the tall mountain grass. We enjoyed good company and a meal complements of a man from Nebraska, Tim Blythe (mule man & buck skinner).
In the morning, the manager of the Rendezvous Lodge brought us some groceries from her own home. Along with the elk meat we received from another resident, we made a tasty stew in our Dutch oven a couple days later. The cook from the Rendezvous Lodge bought us into his home to cook breakfast before Bill saddled up. Bill talked to the cook’s father for a while and learned some of the history of the buildings in the area. Many of the homes here were once civic building such as his house, which was formerly a school. We were told that this area is ranked 3rd in the world for snowmobiling. We also found out the many dead trees in the area are the result of a heavy beetle infestation brought on by aging trees weakened by drought. (sorry guys I never got your names, if you read this please email me)