HWY 2 Day 5 - Rugby, ND - Williston, ND
On the west end of Rugby passed by the Northern Lights sculpture this morning. Talking to a local last night was told the city wanted to build a monument to the town. Had the bright idea to build a sculpture which could light up the norther sky. Built the sculpture, fired up the lights...didn't have much affect. So much for a bright idea.
The other big landmark in Rugby is a stone cairn marking the actual geographical center of North America. Met a family traveling from Texas. Shared a smile and wave. Never know who you might meet at the exact center spot of North America.
HWY 2 twists up and through a hundred miles of gentle hills residuals of the great Ice Age glaciers. Along the way old villages whiz by. Huge grin elevators along the road look more like spacecraft engines.
Beautiful Sunday morning. Had the road all to myself. Began to think how smooth the road felt. Like sailing over the landscape at 65 mph. Suddenly no warning...no signs...quick as a blink...was sliding first right...then left...then right again on loose gravel covered with oil. It was a Sunday morning moment with the Sportster. Closed the throttle, held the bars straight. Found a line with a bit less gravel. After a mile finally a orange sign. "Loose rocks and fresh oil for next 20 miles." Long 20 miles. Sportster rode like a solid pony. Gave the tank a warm pat at the end of the 20. We were one.
Stopped in Stanley looking for the 1902 Rexall Drug Store that was listed in the road books as still serving whirl-a-whip at an old fashion soda fountain. As Bob Dylan said so well..."the times they are a changin' ".
Forty miles east of Williston HWY 2 crosses the Bakken Formation. The Bakken Formation is a rock unit from the Late Devonian to Early Mississippian age occupying about 200,000 square miles of the subsurface of the Williston Basin, underlying parts of Montana, North Dakota, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The formation was initially described by geologist J.W. Nordquist in 1953. Here the plains give way to man camps, oil platforms, pump sites, with orange plumes of flaring dotting the landscape. Energy for America.
Williston, ND once was a classic, just big enough, one movie theater town. It has a long history as boom or bust. Once know for wheat growing, today it is a hub for oil-pumping industries.
Kickstand down Williston. 230 miles.
be strong, be safe, Carlan