Yesterday was a day where I should probably reimburse my paycheck. It was my first trip to Watford City, and I'd long heard about the beauty and hospitality found in this western town ... but I grew up near another "W" town on the opposite side of the state!
It wasn't long after I turned north on Hwy 85 that I stopped the car to take pictures of the red-dirt roads and the oil wells. I'm certain that I passed more than three-dozen operating pumps yesterday. And there's something about them that's just cool.
As I neared the North Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, I was stopping left-and-right (well, mostly right) at all the scenic overlooks, snapping pictures and even texting my husband with shots. (Which I now realize was probably quite mean.) I saw pronghorn, mule deer, bison, and even a turtle. I was so overcome when I saw these mule deer along the road that I forgot to pull-over before slowing down. (Sorry drivers.) The North Dakota Badlands are so majestic and green. Wow.
That brings me to beautiful, hospitable Watford City. Entering town, you're greeted by waving American flags and the gorgeous new Long X Visitor Center - complete with a display of the largest petrified tree stump ever found in North Dakota. I attended meetings with approximately 40 great gals representing community businesses and visitor services and then enjoyed a scrumptious tortellini lunch at Outlaws Bar and Grill (I was in the grill side) and a little shopping.
I took in a bit of the Killdeer Scenic Byway on the drive back to Bismarck, stopping at the Little Missouri State Park, Killdeer Mountain Battlefield State Historic Site and Medicine Hole. What an absolutely perfect Thursday in North Dakota.
I didn't have time to visit the North Unit of TRNP - but I know I'll be going back in just three weeks. Yea!