By Alkali Springs Correspondent
It is with a heavy heart that I write this final column of a series that started weekly in the Havre Daily News way back in 1975. I was not the first to write of events in the Bear Paw Mountains. When teaching in Glasgow, I found very interesting the twice-a-month column written by then Beaver Creek Park superintendent Greg Morley. When I returned to Havre, he had left the park, so I proposed to Havre Daily News editor Herb Watts that I take over. He agreed and paid me with a box of cigars a month. I can remember the first column in March of 1975 like it was yesterday. It was mainly the results of ski races at the Bear Paw Ski Bowl.
What changes I have chronicled during the years. But more popular than any changes and improvements were a look back into the lives of Bear Paw characters Bee Lucke and C.L. Stuart. One of them was my father, the other my grandfather.
And, of course, the lives of my three little chickadees at the Little Gray Chalet were always popular. Things change. Even the chickadees grow up. The oldest is in Great Falls, married with two children. The middle is a carpenter on an absentee landlord ranch close to Lewistown and the third is hamming it up each night on stage in Las Vegas. (He must take after me!)
And through the years the column turned out more about me and my life than Bear Paw news.
Things change. Moving, even temporarily, closer to Glacier National Park, so I could drive a red bus over Logan Pass this summer made it difficult to write this column with anything but a Glacier attitude. And bouts with prostate cancer leave me in the dark about my future.
So it is time to hang it up. Believe me when I tell you that I will miss all you gentle readers and your kind comments whenever you saw me. You will be on my mind forever.
So, thanks for a good run.
And as Roy Rogers used to say to Dale Evens every so often, "Happy trails until we meet again."