Arriving back in the now familiar Missoula, we stopped by the Missoula Massive’s house to find nobody home. Leaving a note on the front door we headed back towards the scene of the breakdown to locate the secret swimming hole everybody kept talking about.
Nimrod spring isn’t too far out of town heading south along interstate I-12. The place is a bit of a local spot so we promised we wouldn’t give the exact location, but the Missoula locals are pretty friendly so we encourage you to go meet them and we’re sure they’ll happily point you in the right direction. As we arrived and parked up under the old ‘No Parking’ sign, everybody else appeared to be leaving for the afternoon, so we ended up having the place to ourselves. Cracking a couple of Mt Begbie Brewery Tall Timber Ales (great beer by the way) we spent the next hour watching bright red dragonflies flit across the water and enjoying the clean, unpolluted spring, just a stone’s throw from the I-12 traffic roaring past oblivious to our contented presence.
As the fish jumped in the water, sun setting to our right, moon rising to our left, we contemplated the misfortune with which fate had brought us to Missoula, and were thankful we’d had the chance to spend time in such a magical place that would have otherwise passed us by. Finally accepting of everything that had unfolded in the past week, we dried off and keyed our next destination into the GPS to depart Missoula. Or so we thought.
If only that cheeky GPS didn’t take us straight past the mall where the Mustard Seed restaurant was located, and we weren’t tempted to solidify our new found friendship with a final sincere thanks to Steve, Alex and what we’d come to call the ‘Missoula Massive’. Following a few handshakes, some words of thanks and an update on our last week on the road, we accidently sunk a few too many ‘Shhhmoke and a pancake’s’ (Kettlehouse Scotch ale, which you can only get in the Missoula area, infused with a shot of maple Crown Royal – a total party in your mouth) to make it any further than the carpark. Well, what are new found friends for!
Settling into a cozy sleep, we were swiftly awoken about an hour later by the mall cops banging on the door. With Matt crawling over in his tighty whiteys, Sarah’s only advise was to just tell the truth. So he did. And we were consequently apologised to, profusely, for being woken up. Turns out mall cop’s name was Matt, so they had something in common, and he was more than happy for us to spend the night after a few too many rather than hit the road. He was even so kind as to radio his mate to tell him to not disturb us either. Champions!