Enjoy a true story!
I was driving along some of Montana’s highways years ago, westbound for Missoula. The winter trip had been a challenging one with snow-covered roads along the way, especially as I traversed the mountains between Great Falls and Seeley Lake.
Highway 200 became my route after leaving Great Falls. Rogers Pass loomed ahead, and the road was covered with two or three inches of snow. I was wondering where the snowplow might be as I continued on my way.
Following the tire tracks in front of me helped keep my car going straight and safe in its direction. My driving speed was further slowed by a large tractor-trailer truck looming up ahead. I was thinking to myself, “Let’s just keep all of us moving along slow and safe.”
Passing an historical marker set back off of the road didn’t help my thoughts to warm-up much. The sign informed any and all about the Arctic temperature recorded in 1954 in the pass when the thermometer crash dived to -70F. The record temperature remains the lowest ever recorded in the United States, outside of Alaska.
After reaching Seeley Lake, the road conditions improved dramatically. The snowplow had been busy in making the road surface much safer here. Soon I would reach Interstate 90 and be heading into the Missoula area.
As I journeyed along the freeway, road conditions were becoming worse by the minute. More snow-covered patches caused me to slow down and use more caution.
Finally, I was just a few miles away from my final destination. The roadway was free of snow and just wet in places. In the distance, I could see a set of flashing lights along the left shoulder of the road.
My road-weary eyes spotted a tow truck along the interstate highway, and then I could see another vehicle buried in the median’s deep snow. Beginning to brake and slow down my speed, my curiosity was taking over.
The tow truck driver was digging around the car in an effort to create a clear path to pull it out to safety. You ask, where was the driver of the buried car?
Standing off to the side and watching (more like supervising) was a highway patrol trooper. His marooned patrol car was buried in the deep snow, unable to move out and needing a tow. The look on the trooper’s face was one never to forget . . . not too happy and certainly feeling embarrassed!
As I drove the final couple of miles to Missoula, my mind was filled with all of the stories and teasing the trooper would likely have to endure about his thrilling drive along Interstate 90.
But wait . . .
As American radio commentator Paul Harvey used to say, here is the rest of the story!
Stay tuned for the finale to this true story!!