As 16 Mile Creek meanders down the canyon that bears its name, some 1400+ miles from Chicago's Union Station, the give and take between the water and the Milwaukee Road right of way continues its graceful play. While the creek wanders back and forth between the canyon walls, the railroad transcon lofts itself over and across again and again. The surveyors and engineers laid a smooth path down this canyon, evident even 100 years after the line was plotted.
Today the canyon and the old railroad through it are likely best known for fly fishing. Fishermen can be seen gracefully placing their flies in and amongst the eddies and pools that dot the flowing stream. Instead of Thunderhawk freight trains, bridges like the one above play host to rubber waders and fishing tackle - especially in beautiful Montana summer weather.
Like many places the line traverses, modern amenities seem woefully out of sorts. The texting of a touch phone or the glow of a tablet are revealed instantly as superficial distractions - robbing us travelers of precious time, and the surrounding depths of life. Here in the canyon, out with the fly fishermen and ghosts of Little Joe electrics on a beautiful summer day, there seems to be so much more to the story. Times and places like these are doorways to something bigger and something lasting.