July 2, 2012

Tuning up the equipment is key for a good fisherman.

…and so is an able assistant.

The idea was to leave early for Spring Mountain to sprinkle some of the Hawley ashes at the ancestral cow camp. Six 4-wheel-drive vehicles lined up by the old locker plant waiting on Bryan and Marc who were delivering Jacki Blakeman’s kayak to our porch so they would have room for extra passengers.

Only 30-45 minutes late (a new Hawley record), our caravan headed up Horse Creek road. First, we were on a new paved surface, then on improved gravel, then on definitely rutted 4-wheel-drive only trails.

Over an hour later, we reached the cow camp and cabin where cattle from the Rocking Chair Ranch, the picture-perfect place dating back to Frank Welty (Gladys’ father), have spent spring and summer for 80+ years getting fat on the high altitude grass.

The relatives wandered down to a ridge near the cabin with the two urns containing Paul and Gladys’ ashes.

Soon, Mary and Fred had mixed a small portion of  each of their ashes, and Fred let the wind carry them over the ridge.

Paul and Gladys’ kids.

It was, indeed, a photo op. (Note: more photographers than subjects!)

Jackie had climbed the much taller ridge behind them with her dog Sierra and photographed the gathering of relatives who followed the Hawley’s after-death directives.

Peanut, Margie and Fred get in a family portrait before leaving the high country.

After a sandwich and a quick rest back in town, most of the family headed up to the little town cemetery overlooking the town of Dubois.

After lunch we were met by a lady named George, the cemetery caretaker, and the local VFW honor guard who did a brief ceremony. Jeff Milton, the family real estate agent blew Taps. (That’s Jeff under the tree…it was hot).

The two poems that Mary and Cathy read up on Spring Mountain were enclosed with the ashes before being interred.

The priest from Our Lady of the Woods completed his first two days in Dubois by  blessing the grave of Paul and Gladys.

Later we gathered at the Longhorn Pavilion, where most of the family are staying, for a monster picnic. Chuck and Nancy stopped at Costco in Idaho Falls to stock us up on beer. An enormous quantity of food and drink were consumed, and there were still leftovers to use for our 4th of July picnic up at Chuck’s place.

Frank Welty III joined us for a cold drink and visited for a while with Cathy.

Jayson and Pat were supreme cooks, but they gave credit to this amazing grill arrangement.

Ed Hawley bonded immediately with Bowen Gilmour. Margie Tanttila didn’t find the weather too hot, but of course she lives in Nevada…

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