Camping at Yaak River, the arrow of the bow

Friday, July 21 (continued)

Our campsite at Yaak River Campground, Route 2, northwest of Troy, Montana

I tether the crew at our new campsite so  I can set up our picnic without concern for them.

There go the Camp Inspectors, on the job!

Quickly I retrieve the red-checked oilcloth from the Perfect Tow Vehicle and spread it out on our picnic table.  I go inside and wash my hands and then bring out the rotisserie chicken.

Ooh-boy, it smells good!

“Hey there, Roger!  Are you as hungry as I am?”

He’s about to have his second rotisserie chicken.  I think he likes this part of his new life as a member of the canine crew!

I bring out the table setting, my drink, and things to prepare our fee payment envelope.

“Reggie honey, it’s good to know you’re keeping an eye on our lunch!”

I cut up tender morsels for the crew and dive in.

Mmm…. delicious!

“Here ya’ go.  One for the Reggie Man and one for Roger Dodger.”

After lunch, we take the fee envelope to the pay station.

After that we walk the long way around the campground loop.  We pass a cute trailer with attached room.

Is this a T@B trailer?

As we pass each campsite I speak to Roger.

I’ve found that a higher pitch of my voice brings the best results.  You know, that exaggerated sing-song tone, “Be a good boy, Roger.  Be a good boy now.”

He turns his head so I know he’s listening.

Roger has progressed to the point where he usually can stay quiet if he’s given advance warning.  When he’s startled, he responds with barks.  Can’t blame him for that!

A forty-ish couple come around their trailer to greet us.

With them is a black dog.

Roger reacts with a couple barks and, when they come close, immediately stops barking.  I scratch him behind his ears.

The canines get to know each other with their noses.

The man asks the breed of the crew and tells me their dog is part rat terrier and the other part I forget, darn it!

The man is remarkably interested in Roger and Reggie.

He sits cross-legged on the pavement, reaching to stroke them.

Wow, this man loves dogs!

Drawn to his gentle, open manner, Roger and Reggie climb all over his legs, happily soaking up the love.

The man asks their ages.  Roger lets him pull back his gums to inspect his teeth.

“He’s not very old.  Teeth are in great shape.  Oh, and I see he has an under bite.”

He fusses over the dogs for several minutes while we talk.  

His wife stands to the side, joining in the conversation.  I explain how Roger was a stray, afraid of people, until he met Reggie a short while ago and then Reggie brought him to me.

“Now he LOVES people!  So much that he gets super-excited and barks.  He’s learning not to do that but he needs time and socializing to overcome the habit.”

We talk a little more and they tell me where there’s a path going to the river.  Before continuing on our way, I thank them both for the attention they gave Roger and Reggie.

“You helped Roger a lot with his training.”

Back at camp I work on the groceries I bought in Libby.

The crew and I aren’t getting as much exercise as we used to.  Mostly because of the heat, our walks are short.  All things being related, I have to give up things like huckleberry ice cream and berry pie.  Time for an eating adjustment!

Using my small colander, a big bowl, and a jug of water, I wash the blueberries and cherries and pack them in zip-loc bags.

After that I trim, wash and pack the vegetables, putting an assortment in each bag.  Baby carrots, tiny cucumbers, cauliflower, broccoli, radishes, and snow peas.  These make a nice lunch or snack with dip (yes, I know… fat and salt… I go easy with it.) and having them prepared like this is handy.  I have lean turkey slices from the deli, too.

When the sun is low, I take the crew down to the river.

As usual, Roger leads the way.

This section of the Yaak River is wider than the photos make it appear.  It’s hard to get a good pic when almost at the same level as the river.

Boulders line the bank on our side.

I sit on one of them with my feet in the water while watching Reggie and Roger climb and jump.

The crew isn’t interested in going in the water.  

I can understand that.  The sound of the big rapids a short distance downstream is enough warning that this is no placid pool where we sit.

That might be a good place to wade where these folks are positioned.  

I’m content just to take it all in and imprint it on my memory.

The sun sets behind the hill on the opposite side of the river.  The train, ubiquitous to northwest Montana, passes by with a rumble and a roar, bringing our first day beside the Yaak River to a close.


Did you know . . . ?

According to British Columbia’s Geographical Names Information System, “Yahk” is a Kootenay word meaning either “arrow” or “bow” and referring either to the Yaak River or the Kootenay River. The southward curve of the Kootenay River (from Canada into the United States and back into Canada) is said to be a “bow”, with the Yaak River possibly being the “arrow”. . . . — Wikipedia



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60 Responses to Camping at Yaak River, the arrow of the bow

  1. suzette in TN says:


  2. Gail from Buckeye AZ says:

    Looks like a Beautiful spot to camp. Boys are looking good!

  3. Pat from Mich. says:

    What a lovely spot! And R&R are cute as ever!

  4. suzette in TN says:

    I love this post. So packed full of lots of good things!

  5. Jeannie from WA says:

    Wow Sue, you make me want to rush to the nearest store to pick up a chicken for dinner. Looks like you’re in another beautiful place. Hope you aren’t getting too close to the wildfires. Stay safe.

  6. Reine in Plano (when not camping) says:

    How fun and what a lovely spot. Enjoy

  7. Reine in Plano (when not camping) says:

    How fun and what a lovely spot. Enjoy

  8. Jan says:

    Are you in Canada? I hope so and that you intend to go across
    Canada. We can never find places to camp for less than $
    $30 a night and hoping you might find a few places for us
    We love reading about you and the dogs.

    • Joyce sutton says:

      I echo that. The provincial parks there were 30 with no hook ups. Course that was Canadian $. I had heard you could pull up anywhere and park beside the highway even but didn’t find any of those places where I was in BC. One place a nice city park in Slocum next to a lake and fishing docks had a sign no overnite parking but I was parked there with the boys swimming and the man in the next house told me everybody does. I had a campsite already just in the edge of town with a double waterfall right on front of my camper and only 2 other rigs in the campground. Free wifi yes it was $30 but worth it

  9. Cinandjules 🌵 says:

    What a great day! The rotisserie chicken looks marvelous! Roger Dodger how cute!
    Have a great weekend!

  10. Geri in the FL panhandle! says:

    What a beautiful spot you bring us to today! Love the nice shady camp you have. So Rog has learned the treat of rotisserie chicken eh? Hahaha! How good that you meet a nice couple that help with Roger’s social manners. Reggie is always so sweet! What crew you have now Sue. Your chicken looks really good, now I am hungry!

  11. eliza in illinois says:

    I love the tab trailer with the side tent. Sort of have my heart set on one. And love the creekside camping you are showing us. Love everything about this post, but now I want chicken and huckleberry ice cream to go with my trailer!

  12. Virginia620 (AL) says:


  13. millie says:

    Lovely photos again and that chicken looks delicious. It’s good that the boys are well behaved and wait for you to serve them 🙂

    Yes, that is a T@B…we have the little sister to the T@B which is a T@G. The T@bs you can stand in and most have showers & toilets and an inside kitchen. Our T@G is the non-standee version. It is a queen bed on wheels with a clam-shell hatch that opens with the kitchen on the back end. Prior to our T@G we had the even smaller MyPod which I lovingly referred to as an Easter Egg on wheels since it was a fiberglass shell with a full bed inside – no kitchen. DH started calling it the “people microwave” after our July stay in Moab, UT a few years ago 🙂 We took the MyPod – officially dubbed Roswell since our white version looked like an alien with big black eyes – to Yellowstone a few years back. We lived in it for 3 weeks and put 5,600 miles on it.

    The following year we could not pass up a good price on a new T@G and traded in “Roswell” for “Mercury” (our T@G is silver with white trim). Mercury went to Acadia NP with us two years ago. We haven’t been out on the road much in the last year, work and life has gotten in the way, but we do have two nearby rallies that we’ll attend this fall when the NC summer cools just a bit.

    I’m hoping in a few years, once we retire to upgrade to a Casita and hit the road. But for now the T@G works well and we can keep it in our garage, saving all those storage fees since our community will not allow anykind of RV to be parked in the driveway…don’t get me started 🙁

    Anyway, we’re really looking forward to taking Mercury out again in September/October. There are some great T@B/T@G owner groups that have regularly scheduled outings. Where we all get to show off our “babies”.

    I can very highly recommend the T@B/T@G family of campers, they are Amish build by a company in Ohio (nuCamp) and having toured the factory and personally met the owner and many of the folks who build these units I would recommend them to anyone looking for a lightweight, well made camper.

    disclaimer: I am not affiliate with nuCamp other than being a highly satisfied owner of their product 🙂

    • Karen in Pacific NW says:

      There is a fairly recently made travel trailer alternative for you needs of parking it in a garage but still having standing headroom while camping. It is lightweight for towing. It is called the Meerkat. It only weighs 900 lbs so it can be towed with most 4 cylinder vehicles and you can roll it around by hand for moving it in and out of the garage!

      • ApplegirlNY says:

        That Meerkat is adorable. How fun. We do love our on board bathroom, though – especially in the middle of the night. LOL!

    • Pshorten says:

      We are taking our Casita to Acadia in September. Please send me any thoughts you have on things not to miss seeing.

  14. Karen in Pacific NW says:

    There are hundreds of quick and easy to make — with a few basic ingredients — low fat, low calorie veggie dip recipes online 🙂 No cooking required!

  15. AZ Jim says:

    Another fun post Missy…

  16. Great post Sue, sorry, pore Internet for us, have a great weekend and stay safe and give Reggieman and Roger Doger a huge hug from us,,,Rusty n Piper

  17. Sue,
    You make a good point about ‘regular’ dip, mostly sour cream + some flavor… Not bad but consider using Cottage cheese instead of sour cream. If the appearance of CC is a bit too lumpy, a bit of a spin in the blender – or use of a whisk will solve that straightaway.

    I was introduced to this (cottage cheese as dip) by a couple of very nice DoD school teachers while living in Korea. Still eat it to this day….

    The veggie mix looks to be a treat.

    As always, thank you posting the photos of the campground/river. I’m jelious of the folks camping right next to the river. What a way to see the outdoors.

    Best of luck in your continued travels.

    • Mostlylost says:

      Man, I love cottage cheese and carrots! You can also whip some feta cheese with equal parts cooked squash as another slightly healthier dip for veggies. But they are doing an ice cream social at our RV park tonight, so you know what I will be eating instead! 😀

  18. Deena in Phoenix says:

    Lovely day you have given us…friendly couple with their pet, gorgeous river and train views, rotisserie chicken and all the fixings, the best camp inspectors and the blogorinos…Thank you!

  19. Anna from NC says:

    Great post and comments have good info….still dreaming of a TT or RV for my husband, pups and me. Just started reading about the T@B….looks promising due to size, towability etc. Still collecting info.

    Been following you for a long, long time. But enjoy your posts so very much!!! Thank you!

  20. Renee from Idaho says:

    Livin the dream for sure, Sue!

  21. Elizabeth in WA says:

    Lovely spot again, Sue! Your eating ideas sound great in this hot season!! It IS hard to eat enough veggies, etc sometimes…we are working on that issue too…
    Finally the smoke has lifted…enough at least…we went with daughter and kids to the country fair…very small one, but was nice being up close to all the animals and seeing the handiwork of other folks, etc…and of course, a bit of good eats!!
    Glad to hear Roger is doing better…and is learning to listen to you…that is half the battle, getting dogs to listen to our requests…we watched the 4H kids show their dogs today too…fun!

    • ApplegirlNY says:

      Our county fair is next week. I love to go. Love the animals and quilts and arts and crafts. Midway – not so much. Such a great way to spend a summer evening.

      • Elizabeth in WA says:

        Our kids used to do 4H for a few years…so it is fun to us to go see what new breeds are out there…or at least breeds we never knew about before…and yes, I do enjoy seeing the handiwork of the kids and adults too…fun!

  22. ApplegirlNY says:

    What a lovely, relaxing post. Meandering river, mountains, and a lovely campsite. I’m really falling in love with Roger. What a delightful addition to the crew. He and Reggie have years of fun ahead of them thanks to you, Sue.

    Sun is shining in the Adirondacks – for now. It was quite stormy last night, but after the storms came clear, cool piney breezes. Life is good.

  23. Steve says:

    I notice you and I have “classic” taste for fine glass. We both have the same glass from Walmart, 88 cents … great size (30 oz) for iced tea.

    RVsue, I cannot publish the story or reason why but please not my website address below … my blog has moved and I remember you saying that you stop by at times.

    Other blogarinos that see this are also welcome to check it out. I am not trying to get traffic, just letting Sue know of the change.

  24. Leo says:

    In a time long, very long ago, I was a refugee from my erroneous perception that urban society was about to collapse and the only way to survive was to have a homestead as far away from a major city as possible.

    Mother Earth News magazine was a different deal back then in the late 70’s, and in the classifieds in the back there were hucksters selling land. My wife and I dealt with one and he had some logged over land about 10-15 miles up the Yaak River from this campground.

    We had a VW camper van and in late spring we went to this land and tried to stay the night. But… no-see-ums chased us out! At midnight – or close enough – we drove away from the land up the Yaak and into this campground.

    Momma had not got dressed and was sitting on the fold-down bed just wrapped in the sheets and blankets as I drove away from the tiny bugs that came through the window screens.

    Reaching the campground we drove in looking for a place and a Sheriffs Deputy followed us in. Remember, this is NW Montana and it was ‘enjoying’ an invasion of counter-culture refugees, i.e., hippies, and the deputy was leery of a bearded guy driving an old VW van with a naked woman in the back.

    Well… it turned out OK that night and we did not buy the 20 acres up the Yaak. The bugs decided for us.

    Just a bit to the NW is the Idaho town of Bonners Ferry where we did find our Shangra La, although we had to vacate that as the recession of 1980 took hold and all jobs in the timber industry disappeared with the 20% interest rates of the time. We left north Idaho for eastern Washington and a steady job for the next 22 years.

    Good memories for me in that part of the world – Thanks Sue!

  25. Lynda H says:

    I love all of your posts, but this one just made me smile with contentment. All seems well in the world. And I love your line “I’m content just to take it all in and imprint it on my memory.” We should all learn from this moment. Hugs to you all.

  26. Funny that I’ve been absent from your blog for many months, and return in time to see a T@B :). Work , family, grandbaby hitting the scene have interrupted my blog reading. I also help admin the T@B Facebook group “T@B camping trailers”. It has grown by leaps and bounds and keeps us on our toes. My T@B is now 11 years old, and a much more basic model than the new ones with their wet baths, holding tanks, and Alde hot water system. We have a great group of owners who plan events rallies, beach hops…I love my little yellow T@B dearly. I have the Thermarest add-a-room, which is no longer made. More than doubles my space if hubby or a grown child wants to tag along.

    I am headed to Glacier a week from Tuesday. Will meet four other T@B friends there. I’m excited. Besides CO, I haven’t spent time in the west. I will in retirement, you can bet your bottom dollar.

    I couldn’t stand not knowing how you obtained Roger, so I scanned back and read that story. Love it! He’s the perfect little guy to join the crew. Enjoy MT!

  27. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    This is a beautiful site. The river looks so relaxing, I could just take my lounger down there and take a nap.
    I love when Reg & Rog meet new friends. Such easy going pups.

  28. Rover Ronda says:

    Isn’t that picture of Roger looking up over the edge the table precious? 🍗

  29. Denise -Richmond VA says:

    Hi, Sue,

    I love this camp! The flowing river, a site that offers shade and sun, and a picnic table for the red-checked tablecloth, boulders for the boys to explore, another learning opportunity for Roger, and Rotisserie chicken. Just about perfect! That chicken looks delish, and the radishes so fresh. The sight of them made my mouth water!

    I agree with Barbara from Nashville; you and the zoom-zoom brothers seem very content – love it! 🙂

    Enjoy the rest of your weekend where ever you may be. Thank you for letting us tag along! Sending you and the Crew love and hugs from me and Gracie pup! 🙂

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      I meant to reference Lynda H’s comment about the contentment…not Barbara from Nashville… apologies!

  30. Dawn in Asheville says:

    Lovely spot and great pics of the crew – so glad to read that Roger is progressing – they keep you hopping that’s for sure!!! Just love hearing how your travels progress. Always breathe more deeply after reading one of your posts.

    Last month to go on my renovations and classes start soon (although this semester they’ll be remote so I can start planning next semester’s fieldwork) so pressing hard to get everything together. Mid-September I’ll be on the road.

    Not everything is going to get done, but most of the critical things to make her liveable and a “home”.

    Right now, just going to be putting in some long days 🙂

    Safe journeys to you and the crew!

  31. Mona from West Texas says:

    August 21st is quickly approaching, have you thought about camping on the path of the solar eclipse?

  32. ValGal (westernWA) says:

    Roger looks pretty interested in that chicken. Lol. It’s only the second?

    The ubiquitous train along the camping route in Montana and in BC/Alberta brings back some of my very favorite camping memories.

    Hope everyone is doing well!

  33. Katy in NH says:

    Hello fellow blogarinos,

    I recently cooked radishes in a beef stew instead of potatoes.

    They have the same basic texture as potatoes. Not the same taste, but a good substitute as they take up some of the flavor of the stew.

    Katy in NH

    • ApplegirlNY says:

      Great tip. I’ll give it a try. I’ve used turnips often, for the same potato replacement. They do the same thing, with a nice peppery zing.

  34. Rhonda Patrick says:

    Just want you to know Sue that we have often been to Yaak and back many times. Yaak is a small hamlet in southern British Columbia near the border. Enjoy your column and have visited many of the places you write about in your blog.
    Rhonda from Golden B.C. and Az.

  35. Giving up pie and icecream ooooohhhhhh noooooooooo. Ok I tried it this summer and was a failure.:-)
    Hope you do better. I drove to Haines was hard to leave. Looooove BC also.

  36. Is the road to the town of Yaak paved? I was told to go that way to see it.

  37. Archae says:

    Love this post and the comments. Thanks for the tip about cottage cheese and the story about finding your own shangri la. These are especially fun for me. Thanks to all the blogorinos who take the time to offer comments.

  38. weather says:

    Oh my gosh, those pics of Roger looking at the chicken and Reggie keeping his eye on it are simply precious! I just love reading “…our picnic…our lunch…” , and that you three eat meals together,sharing food. There’s such a warm and loving quality about that. Your treating the boys as part of your family, not pets that you own, speaks volumes to me …

    It’s hard to tell from just one photo what the black dog’s breed is. Maybe a Manchester terrier and rat terrier mix? There’s all kinds of reasons to appreciate that couples behavior and their contribution to Roger’s training. I especially like the man’s having sat on the pavement. That is such a relaxed and approachable position. Animals don’t automatically understand our words. Using a pitch in our voice they respond to, a welcoming and non-threatening body language, and letting them see our facial expressions at eye level, are great ways to help them relax and enjoy learning.

    At that campground you showed us an Airstream, R-Pod, vintage trailer and that T@B with it’s tent. It really does make me happy knowing the last one on that list is still my favorite. Thank you for including it. I wouldn’t trade my T@B and tent for any other rv. It just has everything that I want, no more , no less.

    Love the Did you know segment! I did a web search to find a map showing both rivers . It really does look like an arrow and bow.

  39. Laura - Illinois says:

    Wow Sue, you sure have some wonderful sites to visit and I truly love your updates on your fur babies! How are you doing with finances lately? I bet I could search your site and find updates somewhere, but I am not good at searches and that might take me some while to find. Are you still able to travel/live with in your defined expense wish list? (not sure if defined expense wish list is the correct way to explain this) I sure hope so! Thank you for continuing to share your life story with so many! I am learning so much from your blogs!

  40. Laura - Illinois says:

    Hi Sue AND all those who follow Sue’s Blog!

    Just a gentle reminder… all of you who follow her blog, IF and only IF you shop on Amazon, please take a moment and first come to her blog, follow the link she has here on her blog to Amazon, if you do, she gets a small percentage for sharing the Amazon link, so this is one way to say thank you to Sue for sharing her ups and downs and wisdom. I am about to shop for a cat waterer thingy and a new insulated lunch bag for work… going through her Amazon and then will shop, hopefully will find something I like and will smile to myself cause every little bit helps Sue, even if it is only a buck or two, each little bit adds up to a little bit more! Huggles to all!

    • Casitagirl from NY says:

      OR, just go to Amazon from here, bookmark it, then you can skip the step of coming to the blog first. The bookmark will take you to “Sue’s” Amazon.

  41. Rhonda says:

    New to rvsue 🙂

    • Rover Ronda (WA) says:

      Welcome Rhonda! So glad you’re here!
      What state are you from? There are several Rhonda’s with the h and 2 of us Ronda’s without an h. It will help us get to know you if you add your state or some nickname descriptive of yourself. Look forward to hearing more from you. Do you RV with dogs? How did you find Sue and crew?

  42. Diann in MT says:

    Yaak, Montana. Good you visited, Sue. This is the most remote place most Montanans will visit. The people you encounter are “out-of-staters” because it is so close to Idaho and eastern Washington.
    I look forward to your next travels, Sue. I am betting you follow US 2 into Idaho.

  43. Always wonderful to find a human who’s willing to give back to little doggies as much as they give.
    I really have to put together some easy, healthy snacks – great idea!

  44. Renee (North Ranch/Datil) says:

    We spent a month in Libby last year exploring all around the area. Even included a short jaunt up to Bonners Ferry. Really beautiful area around there. Enjoy!

  45. Shirley Altenes says:

    We had a Tab trailer before we bought our Casita. I kind of miss it but I do like our Casita better because of the bathroom. I really liked the awning on the Casita because the way it attached, we could leave our campsite and not really worry too much about it blowing off in the wind. It was very strong and sturdy. We hardly ever put out our awning with the Casita because we don’t want the wind to rip it off. We use an awning made by Springbar tents that are made here in Utah. It has never blown away!

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