Hello to Cooke City and its wonderful people and history. After being fortunate enough to visit there twice,
I go to the website and view the web cams and the guest book when I need an uplift and can feel the connection. I found two entries that so inspired me today. One was from Melissa Sipley and her family's trip to the area and connecting with her son, Charlie via the dragonfly, how wonderful for you and your family. The other was from Cindy Alston and her Grandmother, Mary Louise Hansen and the joy it brought her to connect with Cooke City. I am sure you all know what a wonderful place it is that you live in, it is both a piece of paradise and heaven, it can inspire and it can heal through the people and nature that surround it. Take care and please keep those web cams going, as they are my only connection for now and apparently I am not the only one. I am going to get back there one day, if not in body, then in spirit!! I hope that Cooke City remains the healing and inspirational place that it has always been and continues to serve mankind that way and without spoiling the surrounding nature and beauty. Have a Great Day, thanks, Denise Webb, Homestead, FL
In 1961 I worked at the Roosevelt Lodge near Cooke City. My friends and I would drive (or hitchhike) to Cooke City for a little excitement. By July, my friend Mary Stevens and I moved over to Cooke City and worked at various jobs for the remainder of the summer. I returned in 62, 64 and 65. I am so happy to see many of the folks I knew listed on your website. I remember Sam Brady and Betty very fondly. I knew Jack Williams prettyy well and we'd talk fishing, but didn't know he was an artist at the time. He got to where he'd tell me good fishing spots, but he would tell other folks different spots because he didn't want too many folks over fishing his good spots. I saw Tommy the hermit many times, but never spoke with him.
Stan Garner Sunday, Jan 28, 2007 at 07:14 MST
In 1982, My family was headed for Cooke City. We had been staying in Yellowstone As we left Silver Gate toward Cooke City, the car in front of us made a fast stop. Looking up the road a short distance we could see an automobile accident. My daddy walked up and helped. He came back with tears in his eyes and said some young people had been killed. In Cooke City the entire town was mourning for it turned out to be people who lived there. Every direction you could turn there were tears. My mother sat up most of the night with me as I cried out of fear as well as compassion. I learned that a young girl had died in the accident. I gave her the name of Patty and prayed for her over the years as if she had been a close friend. If anyone could tell me her real name I would be very greatful. Note. Linda has legitimate reasons for blocking her email address, and I promised to forward any information received on this subject. MKay
Linda Bailey Wednesday, Dec 20, 2006 at 11:44 MST
I was lucky enough to meet Bob Dorf this summer while hiking above Beartooth Lake on our pilgrimage to Cooke City and the Beartooths! He was hiking out north of the firetower! The volunteer at the firetower said that this was his third hike in two weeks! Wow. I am still caught off guard when locals call Crandall Sunlight as he did in his note to you earlier this year. The sign off highway 212 says Sunlight but only to turn in you in the right directionnot to name the Crandall area. I was lucky enough to live in Sunlight Basin in the late 60s and earlier 70s when a trip to Cooke City was an hour on the dirt or mud road! Sorry to hear of Steves and Pats death. Hard loss to families and community. Bev DeVore-Wedding
In early September, 1968, disinchanted with the "love in" mentality which was quickly turning to crime in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district I decided to hitch hike home to Indiana. Fully realizing I would be busy making reparations at home for my actions over the last few years, I decided to make a side trip through Yellowstone. I stopped at the Cooke City Store penniless, hungry and dirty. A woman and her brother ran the store at the time. I will never forget the kindness I received after offering to work for a few groceries. Immediately I realized that here in this tiny Montana town I had found the love and respect for others that evaded me in California. I have never been back to cooke city. Life seems to take you where it wants, but the memory of the kindness I received there will guide me forever in my dealings with others.
Sam Hayes Tuesday, Oct 24, 2006 at 10:26 MST
I'm trying to track down some infromation on Olive Mary Kiley, who I believe was married to Lawrence Nordquist of 'L bar T' fame back in the 1930's (I may be wrong!). I would be grateful to anyone that could tell me If the Olive I mentioned was infact married to Lawrence. I know there are still Kileys living in Cooke City, so if you could help I would be very grateful!
Craig Laycock Monday, Oct 16, 2006 at 18:37 MST
Jim Workman was our guide during a photography workshop tour during July 2000. When we traveled, the winter thaw was still taking place. A group of 6 photographers followed Jim on ATVs into Gallatin National Forest. He certainly knew his way around for all of us to capture the beauty of the forest. Jim also loved riding snowmobiles in the winter.I want to say hello to Jim and wish him all the best. Thanks Jim for a great week in the great outdoors. This is a trip I will always remember. . . Roy Thompson Aug 14, 2006 at 07:33 MST
My family just returned from 2 weeks in your wonderful corner of the world. After visiting this site we decided to stay in Cooke City for 4 days instead of just passing through (2 coming and 2 going). Based on this site and the wonderful entries in the guestbook it became apparant that Cooke City is loved by a great many people. Now you can add the five of us to that group. Thank you for the time and effort you put into this web tribute to Cooke City. Linda Sellers Friday, Aug 4, 2006 at 11:07: 22 MST
IF ANYONE KNOWS HOW I COULD CONTACT PATTY HUMISTON PLEASE EMAIL ME. I LAST RECEIVED A CALL FROM HER A FEW YEARS AGO AND SHE WAS LIVING IN RED LODGE BUT LOST CONTACT. IF ANYONE COULD FORWARD CONTACT INFO THAT WOULD BE GREAT. CHERYL LOWE
CHERYL LOWE Monday, July 10, 2006 at 14:49:03 MST
Does anyone know what happened to Doug Keller or Patrick Mus? Doug's dad used to be the photographer for the park and had a cabin between Cooke and Silver Gate. Patrick's dad used to be the school teacher in town. If anyone knows how to reach either one, please contact me. Thanks. Don Salyer
Don Salyer, Tuesday, June 13, 2006 at 17:54 MST
Hi to the good people of Cooke City, Montana. A little piece of America, which stills says AMERICA. I am from Homestead, Florida, which is the southern most point on the mainland of our United States of America. My son was stationed at Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane, Washington. My husband and I visited him in September, 2002. We traveled from Glacier National Park, down through Yellowstone to the Grand Tetons at Jackson Hole, Wy and back up to the northeastern entrance to Yellowstone. We stayed at the Grizzly lodge for one night and only saw Cooke City at night that year and was unsure of the place. Our next trip was with the whole family through Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons and Jackson Hole. At my insistence we traveled to Cooke City to see it in the daylight and we were not disappointed at doing so. We stayed at the Antler's Lodge and although we did not stay long we enjoyed the precious time there and enjoyed knowing that there still exists a place where people trust one another and their word is their word. I wanted to thank the owner of the Sinclair station and Jan of Bun"N"Beds for finding my son's wallet with his military I.D. and such in it and holding on to it until we got it. I always wanted to see Montana since I was little, but figured it was out of the question with living on the east side of the U.S. and always vacationing in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Well now that I have had an opportunity to see Montana and Cooke City, I fell in love with the state and the town. I look at the Exxon station website almost EVERY DAY, in fact the girls in my office tease me about it, "well how's Cooke City today" and I tell just as wonderful as before. I was kinda sad to see the Super 8 going in, but I guess everywhere has the necessary evil of growing larger. I thank you for your website it kinda keeps me connected to the town. I don't know when I'll be able to return there, but Cooke City will always have a special place in my heart. Thanks again for wonderful memories, hope to see ya soon,
Denise, Homestead, FL Tuesday, June 6, 2006 at 17:02 MST
Hi. It was a nice surprise to find this site.
My parents lived in Cooke when I was born and I spent many happy
summers of my youth in Cooke and Silver Gate. My grandparents
are Doc and Jean Hayes. Im about to take a trip out there
and am wondering if anyone knows what has happened to some people
I would like to see. Does anyone know where Boyd or Pat and Darrell
are these days? I cant believe how much time has gone by
and how much I have lost track. It looks like a lot has changed,
but Im so excited to go back. Thanks for this guest book
and for all the stories about a town I love so dearly.
I have always loved Cooke City, from the first time I came there when I was a young child at the age of 5. My dad, mom and myself would come out every summer and spend a whole month there. My best friend out there was a young kid named Randy. We used to go horseback riding together, skip stones and go hiking. I can not wait till I can bring my kids up there. There's no other place on earth like it.
Lisa Bennett-Koon Sunday, May 7, 2006 at 14:25 MST
I spent the summer of 1963 trapping "pocket gophers" up and down the Bear Tooth Mountain for Dr. Clarence J. "Arch" Tryon from the University of Pittsburgh. I worked with Bill Kodrich and Skippy Gasser and we lived and worked in tents. Sam Brady ran the Cooke City Store at that time and when we got a chance to go to Cooke for groceries he was a good friend to all of us. I was 22 at the time and just finished Pitt in biology. I remember a moose and a trailer who had an "unusual" attraction. There was a newly wed couple living in the fire tower on top of the Bear Tooth and they would never come out and visit. We thought it was the fact they were newly weds. I know now it was the altitude. There was a Basque sheep herder who camped by our base camp at 8,500' and we would often take him into Red Lodge to "get happy" and play the piano. He loved brightly colored bandanas. Gene Wade, I believe was the mayor (if not he was someone really important) and I think postmaster, but you would know that better than I. I remember a posting that it would no longer be legal to let your horses run free in the streets of Cooke City. Also remember going to Silver Gate on saturday nights to dance with the rancher's daughters but can't remember the name of the place we danced. Does anyone know where I could find a picture of Sam Brady? I now live in Islamorada in the Florida Keys and several people from Cooke winter over here. One of ours Ms. Pam and her husband visit you in the summer time. What fond memories I have of Pilot and Index and the bears.
Charles "Chuck" Shaffer, Ph.D. Professor of Biology Florida Keys Community College Key West, Florida 33040
Wednesday, May 3, 2006 at 10:25:06(MST)
We just returned from 2 weeks in Cooke City having the time of our lives snowmobiling. You just cannot imagine the quality of the snow is this area - as well as the amount! I do want to thank the folks at the Exxon for the great assistance we received almost on a daily basis with our machines. Without their expertise we would not have had such a trouble free vacation. Thanks Rick and Susan, We have your web cam bookmarked and visit everyday.!
Pete and Mary Johnson, and all the folks from North Dakota!
Sunday, April 2, 2006 at 06:51:26(MST)
I went to school with Jim Griffin ( Doc Griffin's) son, and had the privilege of working 4 summers for Doc at Beartooth Lake from 1958 through 1961. This was before U.S. Forest Service turned the land at Beartooth Lake into a general recreation use and Doc lost the lease on the land. Doc moved the cabins/coffee shop/lodge/boathouse to his property at Cooke Pass. I'll never forget those summers at the lake - superb fishing, hunting, hiking and the most spectacular scenery I've ever seen. I remember taking the diesel power plants the 24 miles into Cooke City for repair as this was our only form of electricity at the lake. The drives down to Red Lodge to get mail, Laurel for the cabin laundry and Billings for supplies, every other week, were quite an adventure. Doc always had a vehicle that was acting up and the trips often kept us on the edge of suspense as to whether we would get there or not. Unfortunately, Doc was killed in an accident on his Cooke City property one fall as he was preparing his trailer for return to Southern California. Does anybody know if the cabins, lodge and coffee shop are still there? I believe there were 8 to 10 cabins that were move to the Cooke Pass property. I still remember the day of the quake that formed Hebgen Lake, in 1959. It shook so violently, that Mildred, Doc's wife said she thought she was going to be thrown out of the bed. Of course, Jim and I, being high schoolers, tired from a rough day of working and fishing, slept through it. Sure was a beautiful site to look across the lake that morning and see that the Tooth was still on the mountain.
Larry J. O'Connell
Fair Oaks, California
Thursday, March 16, 2006 at 18:22:09(MST)
We recently left the balmy gulf coast of Alabama and decided to venture to Cooke City, in February of all times! That is when our schools are closed for a week for mardi gras. My children had never seen snow, so we took them to the extreme. What an incredible advenure! We snowmobiled a little, but the most incredible part was the town itself and the people. I wish we could have stayed longer, I was so intrigued by the locals, and feel certain that everyone there has "a story" to rival those of even us southerners. We clearly were about as touristy as they come, but everyone was so very patient and did not make us feel like the idiots we were.....building snowmen, making snow angels, etc. It was all so new to us. Thanks especially to the very patient young men at exxon, for helping explain (over and over again) what to do on a snowmobile. Thank you, thank you....it is a memory i will cherish.
Thursday, March 9, 2006 at 12:50:03(MST)
Well, Ive been pulled into the twenty first century, finally, and I was directed to this website by my sister, who still visits The Hunter Peak Ranch down Sunlight every summer with her family. What a treat to see the old names I remember so well, and even a few notes by people I remember. I am anxious to see what you say about Bill Sommers. Who administers this site, because I see the reference to Ann Baranko. What a wonderful lady who regularly filled me with pots of coffee while I flirted with her daughters in the restaurant. I first began work in the area as a chore boy at the Hunter Peak Ranch in the summer of 1956. I found the job through King Cole at the Cole Trading Post. Worked the whole summer, 7 days a week, for $ 100. Im not sure I was worth that, but I did milk the cow twice a day and developed forearms like Popeye. The following 3 summers, I worked for Gene Wade at the old Watuck Lodge. I was sad to learn about Ruth and Gene. I learned a lot from them. It was nice to hear about Genie and Dennis, however. I had a couple of years when I went to college and didnt always work in Cooke, but moved there to make a permanent home for myself in the summer of 1965. I worked for Gene again, building the new Watuck. We had quite a crew. Wed go into the woods, with a small Cat, a couple of chain saws, the old Army dump truck, and a small army of incompetent $1.25/hr laborers to cut, snake out, load, and drive out the logs to the saw mill, that we also worked at, in order to cut the lumber that we later built the new Watuck lodge out of. Come to think of it, that was probably one of the earlier summers, because the year I graduated from college, I worked for Elmer Larson at the Range Riders. Great times with Dickie Hargrove and myself running the bar. We saw a lot of sunrises and woke up often at the leanto. That winter, with the mechanical help of Bill Sommers, and with a lot of good meals served by Betty, I opened the first snowmobile rental business in Cooke. I had 4 sleds; a double track, and three single track 14 horse skidoos. With Bill, Betty, Larry Luckinbill, and a few other local enthusiasts, we traveled from Top-o-the World to Grasshopper Glacier, Daisy Pass, and one time, the Silver Tip Ranch. Since the weekends were the only time anyone rented, we had all week to play. I recall going over the top of a few cabins. Tommy Garrison, Shorty, Nick, the Sommers, the Wades and a few others were the only ones who braved out the winters, that were described as 9 months of winter and three months of damn late in the fall. As I remember, Tommy had an Austin Healey at that time. That winter, the snow came in so soon, that Tommy got caught up at the cabin with it. It took him a week or so but, he dug it all the way back to town. Hed dig down to the road, make a ramp, and run the car as fast and as far up the ramp as he could, then dig it down to the road again, and start again. He made it and drove it all winter with the top down. He spent most of the winter in Nicks. I worked with him one summer when we both worked for Larry Luckinbill, widening the road down by the Clarks Fork bridge. I just ran across a bunch of pictures and slides from those days if there is any archive set up any where. I remember and have a picture of Vickie Sommers asleep on her Dads snowmobile after a particularly long ride. I have too many stories, and all too many great memories of those years. My wife , Patty, from Billings, and I helped start the ski camp on Daisy Pass, in 1969, before we moved to Vail, CO. where I ran the ski school for a few years, then got into real estate. Im still active in that, and am now the proud grandfather of 4. I would love to hear from anyone with whom I crossed paths and drank all too many beers with in those days. Where have the years gone? All my best.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006 at 13:26:22(MST)
Does anyone remember Jim Vincelette. He still has a cabin there. He visits every year. He currently lives in Houston Texas. He is my dad.
Tuesday, Jan 24, 2006 at 15:36:48(MST)
This has to be the greatest website in the world! The memories of my time in Cooke City come to life as I read each of the stories these people have shared. I remember Sam and his sister Betty at the store, the russian man at the gas station, Gene Wade, Mrs Norquist. I remember (xxxxx), the waitress at the Cooke Pass cafe who returned to Missoula and promptly forgot me, my friend mexican Joe who I lost contact with after he was sent away for holding up a gas station in Red Lodge, Pete from Idaho. My apologies to all you bartenders I lied to about my age although most of you didn't care in those days. My apologies to a few of you ladies I said things to with my fingers crossed. Thanks to all the folks who hired me and gave second chances. Sorry, to whoever owned the 69 mustang parked at the Shaw lodge - it was me who siphoned all your gas so I could get home, BUT most of all "Thanks to all you wonderful folks who gave me the greatest summer of my life!!
Thursday, Jan 12, 2006 at 16:22:28(MST)
Just a quick note to thank you for the time you put into this website. I visit nearly everyday to check the weather or maybe just to stir up some memories of good times spent there. I began my adventure the summer of 1987 working at the store at Canyon YNP. After repeated trips to Cooke My friend Michelle and I decided to move to Cooke for the remainder of the summer. Michelle returned to work the summer of 1988 during the fires and I visited for a week. Michelle was killed in an auto accident returning to Omaha in the fall of that year.
Tuesday, Dec 6, 2005 at 07:14:24(MST)
Hello, Cooke City!
I spent 4 1/2 years living and working in the Mammoth area of Yellowstone (1995-1999), and one of our favorite things to do was get a group together and drive to Cooke City for a piece of pie! Several of us made the trip through the years, Phyllis, Blink, Patsy, Arnetta, Shirley, Elaine, and others including myself [Tiny]. The food was always great, I especially loved the chili followed by the sour cream cherry pie [which I have not been able to find anywhere else]. Anyone have a recipe? Needless to say we all enjoyed visiting the general store, galleries, etc. Some of us even spent some time at one of Ranger cabins at Kersey. All in all, it was wonderful! Have had some health problems, so don't know if I will be able to return, but I sure would love to see Cooke City again, and like a lot of others, if I could make a living there I'd move in a heart beat. If anyone wishes to write, my email is: [email protected] Love the site and will be back to visit it again soon.
Saturday, Nov 5, 2005 at 13:54:19 (MST)
We passed through Cooke City around 1971 when I was a kid. I remember we drove up the "Top of the World" highway only to find a large group of locals celebrating at the top! Being 1971, the alcohol (and soda pop) was flowing freely even though everyone had to drive back down the mountain! We stayed at a motel/cabins owned and operated by, I think, a family named Porter. Rick Porter was the same age as I was and my brother and I had a great time playing with Rick and his Brother. Rick and I decided to become "pen pals" and wrote back and forth a few times. For some unknown reason I've never forgotten Cooke City or the Porters. If Rick's still around I'd love to hear from him--I think It was my turn to write!
Saturday, Oct 21, 2005 at 10:22:11 (MST)
Good Morning - I wanted to thank you for using our web cam on your site. I have visited your site often and it's fantastic and I truly appreciate you helping us out by using what is available from the web cam. We've had a few
technical problems last week but spent about 2 hours on the phone with the web-cam folks and they have helped me understand the media much better so hopefully the delays when it is down will be decreased considerably.
Keeping it up and running can be challenging and I have discovered that the reason for that is that we choose to honestly have a LIVE web cam as ours here and at the Big Moose are really live and we're the only ones. We're
not overly knowledgeable about this technology but we're trying our hardest to keep up! We, like the Big Moose Lodge, are offering FREE WIFI (wireless internet) to those who choose to bring along their laptops and need to connect to the internet. It seems that free access is only appropriate in this age of technology. In gearing up for our winter snowmobile rental season we're busy with getting the store and units ready to go. Hopefully we'll get that "great snow" winter that Cooke City is known for. Once again, thank you so much for using our web cams on your site.
Susan, Cooke City Exxon
Saturday, Oct 8, 2005 at 6:52:51 (MST)
In the early 50s I spent several summers at B-4 Ranch for Boys. This ranch / camp was run by the then Hockey Coach at The University of Michigan, Vic Heiliger. At the time there were many UM athletes who were counselors. Tony Branoff, who as I recall was a wrestler, Ron Kramer a football player as well as many others. Recently we purchased a 2006 calendar of barns around the country and there we found a photo of the barn at B-4 Ranch Bear Tooth, Montana. Now since 50 years have passed since I was last there, I didnt really recognize the barn. However bright in my memory are Pilot and Index Peaks to the south of the ranch, pack trips into Grasshopper Glacier, fishing trips to Yellowstone Lake and trips to Jackson Hole, all the while packing several of us and our gear in the back of an Ford stake truck. For many years I have wanted to return to Cooke City and B-4 Ranch. We hope to do just that in the next couple of years. Great Website.
Friday, Oct 7, 2005 at 13:16:01 (MST)
I lived in Cooke City in the summers beginning in 1964, first working Ruth and Gene Wade helping building the new Watuck Lodge, waiting tables, and for six years I worked for Sam and Betty (and Wildcat) at the Cooke City
Store. Knew all the folks at Gracie's (Hoosier's) and Dick and Mickey Porter's, Vince and Lo Mus, Tommy the Hermit, Shorty Nichols, Menuey's at Cooke Pass, Dick Randall, oh, also worked at the Cooke Pass gas station one summer when Doc Griffith bought it, helped work on the water line from Miller Mountain to town, remember when Gary Brown built the first dome in the area, spent quite a few nights at Fred Howe's A-frame on the way up
Daisy Pass . . . Does anybody know if the Lean-To is still being used? It was our party spot during the week, and then it was off to the Range Riders. What happened to Ralph and the general store? I'd move back in a heartbeat if I could make any kind of living.
Monday, Sept 12, 2005 at 14:11:51 (MST)
My girlfriend and i worked in Cooke City back in 1976 for Wayne and Gin! I worked at the cafe and Karen my friend worked in the icecream store for them! That was the greatest summer of our lives we met alot of great people and worked with alot of them too! We were from North Dakota so everyone gave us a bad time! I have been back out several times to visit, i love it there! By the way i'm Connie the tall waitress from Gins cafe! If anyone that reads this and remembers us i'd luv to get an email from you! [email protected] Connie
Thursday, Sept 7, 2005 at 18:36:31 (MST)
An addition to my July entry---My husband and I did spend August 13-18 in the Cooke City area. It was the highlight of our almost-three-week stay in southern Montana and north-west Wyoming, visiting all the places we have been before but wanted to stay longer! What a trip! We had to hire Nick at the Yamaha dealership to haul our supplies up to Round Lake because the boulders in the road were way to rough for our Subaru! Round Lake is about 6 to 8 miles back of Cooke City in the Gallatin National Forest off Goose Creek Road. The rental cabin's rustic and sparse, but beat a tent by a mile during the sleet, snow and hail storm on the night of the 17th! The lakes, the mountains, the wildlife, the native trout fishing, the flowers, were all spectacular. The cabin is right on Round Lake and the sunrises and sunsets from there are amazing. We were mezmerized for a week! The area is truely magic. The only disappointment was in learning that many of the businesses are no longer owned and run by locals, but by out of state investors. It changes the ambiance of the town, but the people were still real and wonderfully helpful and enjoyable. Thanks for your great site, and this forum to allow me to hear from other Cooke City fans!
Lois and Ken Horne
Swoope, Virginia (Blue Ridge Mountains)
Lois and Ken Horne
Monday, Aug 29, 2005 at 20:29:11 (MST)
I first came to Cooke with Harold Crabb right after his dad bought the Watuck [Soda Butte Lodge now] I lived there till august of 77. That summer I met a girl from kansas and followed her home. We got married in Oct. of 77 and have 2 great kids who are starting to have kids of their own now. How time flies! It seems like just the other day when Harold, Connie, and I were doing something to make Darrell or Pat mad at one or all three of us. Things have changed a little since then. H.W.'s scattered across Woody Ridge, Bobby Dodge passed away, Connie and I both went different directions, Ricky and Vicky grew up, and Bernies gone too. If you spent any time there from 74-77 I don't need to give last names, you know who we are. The only thing about the same is Rick and Jeff and whoever the "drummer of the month" is. Long nights at Range Riders or the Buckskin were the norm. How many times did we watch the sun come up from the roof of the annex? I come up as often as I can but that's still not enough. Seems like there's barely time to see the ones who are left and still get some fishing in too. All these people talk about the parties but nobody ever mentions the Anvil Inn. Remember Doc Hayes and Don Ellis? I remember keeping one eye on the Ellis girls and the other out for Don! That's enough for now. If anyone remembers, E-mail me any time.
Monday, Aug 22, 2005 at 23:18:19 (MST)
Just a quick note, if by some chance you would know the email address for Gary Hauck, I'd really like it. The one in the list does not work! He's Mort and Betty's son from Cooke City! Thank you !
Monday, Aug 22, 2005 at 23:18:19 (MST)
Just checking in with all those who might know me from the early 80's, I was sad to miss the Beef Lips play on August 20, 2005. I haven't seen the Beef Lips play since 1986 or 87. I had planned to make a special trip just for that gig, but It just didnt work out. My dad, "Shelly Jo", was the drummer of the Beef Lips when Beef Lips started in 1981 I believe. Been a long time. We were real close to getting my dad to make this trip to Cooke, wow wouldnt have that been a trip? Maybe Mike would have let him sit in for a set? That would have been great, I want my kids to see grandpa play one time and enjoy it like I did when I was a kid. I thought those Beef Lips ruled the world. Looking back they were the best entertainers on stage that I have seen. Anyway it just didnt work out this time but maybe next year. Best of wishes to Patty's son, who the Beef Lips had the benefit concert for tonight, I hope they did well with the benefit. Any of you who read this and want to get in touch with me, feel free to do so, I would be happy to hear from you. To all those who were around in the early 80's, yes I remember Kenny Busch, and his dog "White Dog", who got into the rocky mt. oysters at Ma's one summer, I remember Mort and Betty, Exxon Jeff, Rick Summers, Kelly Blair, Sprout, Vicki, Crazy Bob, Chip, Pack-head, I really want to get in touch with Holly Robinson who worked at Beartooth Cafe when Kelly was married to Melanie, her mom. There were more people that I remember and I am sure they know who they are if they see this. Hope to hear from you soon.
Sheldon Jensen Jr
Saturday, Aug 20, 2005 at 23:18:19 (MST)
What a great tribute to my favorite town in the whole world. I log on each morning to check the daily picture just to see the current weather. When I worked in Cooke I would fill up the company truck each morning at the Exxon, grab a cup of coffee and stand out next to the truck and enjoy the very scene you post each day. The scene has changed a bit with that new motel and a few other minor changes, but it's still COOKE CITY!
"Rabbit" Hays, Kansas
Monday, Aug 15, 2005 at 15:21:19 (MST)
Hello! What an awesome website. I never thought I would be able to get any information regarding F. J. Williams paintings I purchased over fifteen years ago. How sad I am to learn Mr. Williams passed away in 1999. His paintings are truly a beautiful example of American folk art. I had seen the report on CNN, called the Cooke City General Store and they were kind enough to provide a telephone number to reach Mr. & Mrs. Williams. Not being in a position to travel to Cooke City, I promptly purchased three paintings via telephone from Birdie. They hung in my former home until we moved ten years ago.
Gina Seklecki Jamison, Pennsylvania
Sunday, Aug 14, 2005 at 11:01:03 (MST)
Well, I'm on my way to Cooke City soon and stumbled onto this site. The entries are great and I cannot resist adding my own. During the summers of 1968 and 69, I flagged for road construction up on the pass and lived at Top of the World and then at the Nordquist cabins...Mrs. Nordquist (Olive?) would bake cookies for us once in awhile, invite us over and tell stories about Hemingway who had stayed several times at their dude ranch in the Sunlight Basin. One time she showed me pictures taken of a family in Boston and I asked her who they were...she was quite disgusted that I didn't recognize her in a dress, heels and pillbox hat! During the summer of 1970, I spent a memorable summer working at the Anvil Inn. The Beartooths are my favorite place, and if I knew how to make a living there, I would be there all the time.
Tuesday, Aug 8, 2005 at 16:05:03 (MST)
Back in 1999, we stopped at the visitor bureau, and I saw a sample of the "COOKING WITH RHUBARB", asked for a copy and DOE JOHNSTON, said she would be happy to send me a copy... she did..... It was published this year and she sent me a copy!' I don't know how she remembered, but I and my wife are very appreciative.
If there was any way you could tell her, I would again be very appreciative. (the address part of the envelope was damaged and unreadable).
I have shared it with all the ladies of our church, starting with Lora Lee Johnston, the wife of Harold Johnston, who was the son of Oren Johnston.
Tony Pires (California)
Tuesday, July 26, 2005 at 18:24:03 (MST)
My husband and I came to Cooke City first in September, 1994. It was incredible 2 week trip through Yellowstone and southern Montana, but Cooke City was our favorite memory! It reminded me of the TV show, "Northern Exposure" popular then. As we drove in, all the dogs in town welcomed us and helped us unload our car at the 'Hoosier' Motel. We tried tasting all of the '100 brands of beer' at the Beartooth Cafe, and were amazed at pick-up trucks unlocked with rolled down windows and guns in open view in their window racks, with no fear of them being stole, parked along the street!
I mention these memorable sights, but the true amazement is the incredible beauty and solitude of the mountains that pictures just begin to touch, and words never can. We will be returning in August, finally! This time we will be staying in forest service's Round Lake Cabin for 5 days! Will report back after our return!
Tuesday, July 18, 2005 at 5:22:31 (MST)
I was thrilled to come across your Cooke City pages. In 1971 I came to Cooke with two friends for a fishing vacation intended to be for 3 weeks. Two of us stayed until late fall. We fished and camped until the money ran out then picked up jobs doing nearly everything possible. We cooked, worked as waiters, painted motel rooms and cabins, cleared fallen trees - you name it, we probably did some of it. It was a very special time working with very special people. Snowfall brought an end to our adventure. I hope to return someday soon to your beautiful corner of the world.
Wednesday, June 28, 2005 at 19:52:31 (MST)
While attending the University of Montana at Bozeman, I became interested in Montana mining history. Following a Google search I came to your wonderful web pages. Several friends and I have planned a trip to your little corner of the world where we intend to spend a few weeks exploring the New World Mining district. We of course will spend some time on Beartooth Pass (the Cooke City side anyway) and then down through Yellowstone.
Thanks so much for your work here!
Thursday, June 16, 2005 at 11:43:45 (MST)
Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 17:06:23 (MST)
Hi there, While i was a college student i took a summer off to live in the Beautous Cooke City! I worked at the beartoothe cafe, when John Felt owned it. I lived in his cabin behind the cafe. Never forget seeing all the bears in that area. Loved hiking up to the peaks, and running into some beautiful waterfalls! Besides getting to know yellowstone park so well, i loved the cooke city area even more, all those wildflowers, pristine lakes. I'll never forget the beartooth pass drive.
Someday i hope to bring my kids there!
Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 9:43:45 (MST)
Cooke is a very special place. I enjoyed reading about the notable residents who made Cooke what it is. I visit a few times each year and see a big change as new folks move in.
Basin WY, USA - Wednesday, May 18, 2005 at 11:18:45 (MST)
Does anyone know a guy by the name of Gary A. Mann? He
lived in Cooke City in 1982 -1983?
What a great website! Hi am so glad to come across people from around the world who have enjoyed Cooke City as much as I have. I first went to Cooke City during the summer of 1977 and have been back every other summer, more or less. Eating salty peanuts and drinking cold beer outside of the General Store is probably my fondest memory, right up there with having breakfast at Ma Perkins on certain cold rainy mornings.
Marc [email protected]
Hi, I'm writing you because I've just read Hemingway's novel 'Truth at first light' in which, towards the end, the author refers to Cooke City Montana. C.C has, according to Hem only one street and its post office is said to resemble a store in the african village of Laitokitok in Kenya near the Tanzanian border.Well, I got interested and landed on your great site and found an almost mythically beautiful place! I dont know if Laitokitok is as beutiful but the area around Mt Kilimanjaro ,where most of the novel takes place, sure is. Every person that loves mountaineous areas must love both these places,and also Scandinavia , especially Norway, where the road from Lom to Luster and all the small places between, are just unbelievable.
Now I wonder, is there(was there ever) a post office in Cooke City and did Hemingway ever visit C.C ?
Let me thank you for a great web site,it really gives you the urge to visit C.C. I really would like to do so given the money and time, the two essentials for travelling.
I am a summer resident here, in the famous "Hanson Pridham Concordia." Every year before summer I get so tired of seeing WISCONSIN and all I want to do is visit the place I have and will be going to for the rest of my life. It is so fun to see this site and look at everything, I want to come in May to August instead of June to August. I miss it SO much! Great job on the site.
Emily Kingman <[email protected]>
Madison, WI USA - Wednesday, March 02, 2005 at 13:38:11 (EST)
In the '30s radio soap opera Ma Perkin's Place, what was Mr. Perkin's occupation? Learned the answer during a course I took in college in Toronto ON CANADA from CDN radio legend Stan Larke. email me if you want this bit of trivia. Cheers! Steve
Steve Tanner <[email protected]>
North Bay, ON CANADA - Wednesday, March 02, 2005 at 15:44:11 (EST)
This is a pleasant surprise, I mean stumbling onto this Guestbook. Reading through the comments and stories of others I find a common bond. How I happen to be here today sharing my thoughts with you is because this morning a friend of mine told me of a pretty cool website. In this website you answer a short questionnaire and it will provide you with a list of cities that would most likely suit your lifestyle. Well after scrolling through twenty-three cities in Alaska, Utah, Wyoming and Montana I was disappointed to see that Cooke City was not one of them. I exited the site and typed in a search for Cooke City and here I am. I am fortunate that both professionally and personally I am able to travel the world. And in these travels although only spending a mere six hours on a beautiful July day back in 1997 I have concluded that Cooke City is one of my favorite places on earth. I was just as suprised to stumble upon Cooke City as I am this site. You see back then in 1997 I was coming off a climb of Granite Peak and decided to ease my aching muscles with a lesisurely drive through the Beartooth Pass. The drive was so spectacular that I couldn't turn around so I continued west through the Colter Pass until I entered a small western town nestled between the mountains. As I maneuvered my truck into the opposite lane and around a sleeping dog I just knew that I had to stop and experience that town, your town Cooke City. I walked through the historic shops stopping to talk to everyone that smiled at me and even bought a new hatband for my cowboy hat at the General Store. I then crossed the street and pushed through the wooden swinging doors of the saloon. Stepping over yet another sleeping dog I bellied up to the bar and spent time drinking beer with a few of your colorful and friendly locals. I have to say that a good time was had by all. I will return again when the opportunity presents itself but until then Cooke City will always be in my thoughts.
Jerry Giordano <[email protected]>
White Lake, MI USA - Thursday, February 24,
I lived in Cooke in 1977and worked at the Watuck. Harold Crabb and I were very good buds. God rest his soul. Cooke City is a place you can never forget and the memories will last a lifetime. Great site!!!
Platte City, Mo. USA - Monday, February 21, 2005 at 22:36:06 (EST)
I LOVE THIS WEB SITE.MY HUSBAND GREW UP GOING TO SILVERGATE AND COOKE CITY. HIS GREATGRANDFATHER HELPED BUILD THE RANGE RIDERS AND THE CABIN AT KERSEY LAKE. WE LOVE IT UP THERE! IT TRULY IS GOD'S COUNTRY. IF ANYONE HAS ANY PICTURES FROM THE PAST OF SILVERGATE AND THE SURROUNDING AREA PLEASE SEND THEM TO ME,IT WOULD BE GREATLY APPREICATED. DOES ANYONE REMEMBER THE VINCELETTE LODGE IN SILVERGATE? KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK! KEVIN & BRENDA VINCELETTE
Brenda Vincelette <[email protected]>
Billings, Mt USA - Saturday, February 19, 2005 at 19:52:27 (EST)
I have to say that your site makes me want to move to Cooke
City. When you spend that much time talking about the interesting
people of your town, it makes you feel like you already know
them. It shows you really care about where you live and the people
there. Love the site and my family and I hope to visit the Cooke
City area real soon.
Greetings all. Years ago I worked as the Park County planner when the cult was buying up the valley. One winter the county planning board wrote a town plan for the Cooke City Silvergate area. I never knew if they adopted it but we had a great time coming up for meetings in the snow. Reading the guest entry pages brought back many memories. Say hi to Margatet Reebe if she is still kicking. Best from Abuja Nigeria Steve Herbaly
Steve Herbaly <[email protected]>
USA - Wednesday, December 29, 2004 at 08:12:15 (EST)
I grew up in the Silvergate Cooke City country. My folks bought the Texaco station in Silvergate from my Uncle Elmer Larson. We moved out from Minnesota in 1954 to Silvergate. My Sister Nancy and I went to school in Cooke City until about 1957. Changed teachers about 4 times, they could not take the winter. Gene Wade jr. was in school with us. It was a great time in my life. My folks sold the gas station in about 1968. Have not been back in quite some time. All the old timers of the area are well remembered by me . Thanks for all your work on this web site.
Gerald Hanson <[email protected]>
Whitefish, MT USA - Tuesday, December 21, 2004 at 13:39:04 (EST)
Hello to all Cooke City people. I have wonderful memories
of the two summers I worked there. I worked at quite a few different
places as many of my bosses expected me to show up for work on
time, sober and clean! I'm thankful I had the oportunity to experience
Cooke City and will always remember the wonderful people I worked
for and with (including the ones who fired me).
I come and snowmobile in this place every year. Someday
soon i hope to live there and become a part of the rich herritage
community. It is full of all that somone would need to live happily.
I hope everyone knows what a wonderfull place that Cooke City
Wow!!! This website brought back floods of memories. Your photo of Horn Millers cabin started it all. My friends and I stayed in that cabin more than a few weekends. We dug around the old mines and even panned for gold in Fisher(?) creek on Lulu pass. That was only a small part of the experience though. The nights spent in Silver Gate at the Range Riders lodge. The hiking and fishing experiences could fill volumes. Cooke has to be the creator's gift to mankind! See you all next summer!
Eugene, or USA - Wednesday, October 06, 2004 at 17:26:34 (EDT)
I have visited your website hundreds of times over the last few years. I can then recall the happy times I spent in Cooke City doing nothing more than cleaning cabins after tourists. The job didn't amount to much, yet the peace and serenity of the Cooke City area makes that time frame stand out as one of the highlites of my life. I do hope that I will be able to return to Cooke City just one more time. May God bless you for your work here. Teri Houser
Baltimore, MD USA - Sunday, September 26, 2004 at 12:57:07 (EDT)
I was in Cooke City in June, 2004 while spending 2 wks in MT. It was the most gorgeous, quaint place I have ever been. As a matter of fact I am a teacher and if I had the credentials and been there about a week earlier would have applied for the available teaching position. Such friendly people and the atmosphere is simply amazing. Plan on going back in the winter or next summer again. I LOVE it! Thanks, Cooke City!
Teresa Boldreghini <[email protected]>
Oakland, TN USA - Saturday, September 18, 2004 at 10:07:02 (EDT)
Thanks for the info! My husband and I will be visiting
in a week or so and this site helped us pick a place to stay
and things to look for. Appreciate it!
I was in Cooke City 8 years ago, and had a whale of a time.
Great Nachos, Great beer and great views. Does anyone want to
leave me their house so I can retire there??? I was on a sole
adventure into Yellowstone and worked for a while in Silver Gate
at the Grizzly lodge. Does anyone know if Hayes Kirby is still
around? Top geezer and would love to hear from him. All the best.
Just wanted to say I have some fond memories of cooke city.
I just came through there in July over the Beartooth highway.
I use to live in Billings, MT till I was 18, then I moved to
California and I miss home terribly. Every time I visit my parents
we always come to yellowstone going through Cooke City and we
stay in Silvergate. The mountains are so beautiful and the air
is so fresh which I miss. We'll for sure be back next summer,
and what a wonderful website. thanks to you I can see a piece
of home thank you.
We spent a wonderful morning in your town on the way from Yellowstone to the Beartooth pass and on the way back couldn't resist another visit. We'll be back!
Ann Arbor, MI USA - Sunday, August 08, 2004 at 20:30:47 (EDT)
I was very happy to find this site. I worked in Cooke City in 1989, and share many of the great memories I read about here. This was a very happy time for me and I met my wife Sarah there. We now have 3 great kids and hope to find them jobs in Cooke for ther summer as soon as they get a little bit older. Oops - thinking about how much drinking and partying we did there - maybe we'd better wait until they are LOTS older! peace to all!
Idaho Falls, ID- Saturday, July 31, 2004 at 06:56:01 (EDT)
Great Site! I love it. I'll be back soon!
San Diego, CA USA - Friday, July 30, 2004 at 20:44:18 (EDT)
This little southern boy fell in love with your beautiful part of this world back in 1986 while visiting Yellowstone national park. I only spent 3 days in cooke city, but I remember the quite relaxed atmosphere and would love to come back. thanks for this webpage of memories
Memphis, TN USA - Friday, July 09, 2004 at 15:12:11 (EDT)
My family would spend the month of July up in Silvergate
with our Grandparents, Kaye and Ann Kiddoo, from 1989-2000. Cooke
City and Silvergate hold some of my fondest memories. Now, my
Grandparents have sold their place, and me being older and having
to work, I have not been able to "escape" to my favorite
place in the world. My mom and sister, Michelle, still manage
to go up there every year. In fact they are up there right now,
while I'm here at work! ( I miss all of our friends and the fun
times we had up there. My Great Aunt and Uncle also summered
there, Pat and Louis Ledbetter...they had a cabin closer to Cooke
City. I miss the Fireman's Picnic, the firework show, and the
Range Rider!! We still get to see our great friends the Pates
who still summer up there, because they live near us in Texas.
I bet it's not the same without Sue and Ralph in the General
Store! Luckily we have some of Mary Blain and Carter Gowl's artwork
to take us back in memory! "Hi" to everyone who has
touched my life...Batemans, Oldemeyers, Archers, Gliddens, etc...
Miss you all!
What a wonderful site for us folks that have lived and worked in Cooke City. It is obvious that the town has a lasting impression on others as it did on me. We had fun. We made friendships that will last forever. Mant things have changed over the years, but the spirit is still there. Thank you for this wornderful site!
Eugene, OR USA - Thursday, July 01, 2004 at 12:30:28 (EDT)
One of my fondest childhood memories as a young boy was
my father and I travelling together to visit Yellowstone, and
a brief stay in a small town that will linger in my mind forever.
Cooke City was our stopping off spot and stayed for a couple
of days and it was somthing a boy from Kansas at 13 yrs of age
could not imagine. Beauty. My father is no longer with us but
the memory remains. Thank You for that.
I worked in Cooke city for 4 months in 1973. it was a long
time agobut I remember it so well. It is a great place to make
friends and have a great time. I drove through is late september
1997 and the memories just flooded back. many things havent changed
one bit. I want to return this summer asap. to all the great
people I worked with I send my very best wishes!
Great Website. I spent 3 summers working in Cooke during
the 80's - has it really been that long ago? Anyhow, I loved
Cooke and want to return so very badly! Maybe this is the year???
I enjoyed the story by Mary Curl. Kersey lake was one of
my favorite places when I worked in the Cooke area. I can picture
Mary on a raft there. It is a very nice thought. Thanks.
Wow! what a great guestbook. Reading it brought back a
lot of great COOKE CITY memories. Yes, we drank to much, we partied
to much and we got fired a lot for not being a very good employee
after an all night party. I'll never forget the wonderful folks
I knew and worked with. Mary
I'm very excited that I got a job for the summer in Cooke
City. I will be there on June 2. I love this site
I Really enjoyed visiting the site. I worked out in Cooke City the summer of 1977. Worked for Gin in her Cafe. We stayed in some little cabins that they also owned. I remember Sue, and Vicki from Beulah ND (?). Myself, Barb Waloch and Kevin Bolander came from ND to work for the summer. There was a family that owned a leather shop from Kansas City. We flew out to visit them once. We Did a lot of partying and dancing at Silver Gate. During the Days off we took horses out for all day rides in the beautiful mountains, Did alot of hiking to the water fall behind the city as well as many other places in the area. Had a great time and made lots of friends that I am no longer in touch with sorry to say. We had the bear running around during the night as well as a few other animals. Was a great time.
Sandy Johnson <[email protected]>
., USA - Wednesday, March 19, 2003 at 02:32 PM (EST)
Wow, what a blast from the past! I worked in Cooke City
one summer, I believe it was 85. I was the waitress/dishwasher/cashier
At Ma Perkins, working for Mort and Betty. At the end of the
summer I was a flagger for the road construction on the wyoming
section of the Beartooth Highway. What a wild summer it was!
Going to Kersey Lake, Beef Lips, Exxon Jeff, etc. Does anyone
remebember my dog Bonnie and the time she got into the porcupine?
Also the bears that summer were right in the road all the time.
I ALMOST quit school to stay on that winter. I was that close
to becoming a local. I've been gone from Montana 9 years now
and right now my husband and I are planning our move back.. Can't
wait to show my kids Cooke City. We also have a cabin at East
Rosebud Lake. We could walk to Cooke from there!! Hope to hear
from some of you all from that summer.
Hello, just surfed in. I have to say that your website
My first summer in Cooke happened to be the summer of '88;
the year Yellowstone burned. I was working as a waitress for
Joan and Bill at their restaurant in town. Most everyone working
that summer left to fight fires, so those of us that stuck around
were very busy as the town was filled with firefighters, smokejumpers,
military personnel, and media. The community really pulled together
in this trying period. That summer didn't scare me away though.
I continued working in Cooke for the next three summers and even
made it through (almost!) one winter. I held numerous jobs waiting
tables at Joan and Bill's, bartending at Hoosier's and Miner's,
and one summer Bill Somers even talked me into being the dump
attendant. Or as others affectionately referred to me "the
dump queen." The summers of '90 and '91 were spent working
for Bernie and Phyllis Kiley at the Yellowstone Trading Post.
I had the pleasure of working for two wonderful people and learned
a great deal from them about business, life, and Cooke City.
Bernie is now deceased and Phyllis runs the store. The awesome
people, as well as the awe inspiring scenery of Cooke City has
a very special place in my memories. I can't wait to get back
home and have a good, long visit with the wise Cooke City-ites
of my past. See you all soon.
Oh how I loved visiting this site!!!! I recalled such wonderful
memories as I read the other entries in the guestbook. I worked
in Cooke for 3 years (1964 1965 and 1966). I actually remember
you Mike Kay when you worked there. I had a crush on you because
you were so tall! I didn't put my name in because I want you
to think a few days before I send you an email! I worked at a
place known as the "teen center". We had a jukebox
and ping pong tables and dancing and refreshments. Then I worked
cleaning rooms at a motel and finally worked as a waitress at
Watuck. I love Cooke City and hope to return some day. I married
Steve Willson who also worked in Cooke for the Forest Service
and have two boys, ages 19 and 24. Steve passed away 3 years
ago. Peace to all you Cooke City junkies!
What a nice site to find! Some of you may remember me as Rosie's Granddaughter. I spent some of the happiest times of my young life in Cooke (80's mostly). Now I am grown and have my own family. I have 2 boys (5,7) and as soon as I can afford it we WILL visit. I miss the mountains SO much, long walks in the woods, climbing the rock slide, tiny tart mountain strawberries. Yes, Beef Lips! Grandma gave me a love for the mountains that I want to pass on to my children. Julie
Julie Rose (Solberg) Massa <[email protected]>
Rock Island , IL USA - Monday, March 15, 2004 at 06:00:43 (EST)
Hi: I enjoyed your page. Back in the 1950's when I was a young child, my family paid several summer visits to a friend of my Daddy who owned a motel there in Cooke City. The man's name was Jimmy Beavers, and the motel, I think, was called Beaver Lodge. It backed up to the river, as I recall, and we always stayed in one of the end units that looked back across the mountain. There was a restaurant next door to the motel, and the owners had a little girl about my age. We played down by the river.In the mid-70's, my husband and I and our then-only son visited Cooke City again, but we didn't stay there that time. At that time, I thought I found the place where we used to stay, but I think only about half of it was still there, and I was told there had been a fire years before.As a child, I was fascinated by the general store in Cooke City, because of all the different kinds of items it offered. I think that was just across the street, maybe a bit catty-corner to the motel. The man who ran it at the time wrote my name in calligraphy. Being from a small Texas town, that was the first time I had ever seen anyone do calligraphy.I have many happy memories of visits there, but as you can tell, time has faded the details. I just feel a pleasant glow when I think about it. The whole area is so beautiful. I was in awe of the Beartooth. The first time we drove over it, my Daddy let out an audible gasp, at one point, having just gotten his first glimpse of Pilot and Index Peaks. It seems he had had a picture, actually of the very scene he was then looking at, on the wall in his office because he thought they were so beautiful, but he had never really been sure where they were. I would like to visit again someday soon. Do you know anything about the Beaver Lodge, or if any part of it is still standing today? Is there another lodging of some sort in that approximate location? I would love to stand by that river and look back at that mountain again. Or maybe I've just put that image together in my head! I'm sure it's all changed after all these years, too, but it is such a pretty picture in my mind's eye.Thank you for your time in reading this note, and for the time it took to put this page together! Marcy Porter
Marcy Porter <[email protected]>
Hi All Cooke City Renegades! I just read the "Cooke City Page", it's great! I was in Cooke in the Late 1970s and 1980's. I worked for Mort and Betty - when the bar was in the back room and there was no "Elkhorn Saloon" (and now has an even different name and owner), Wayne and Gin (Before it was "Crazy Mama's, then later Cooke Pass Cafe 2, now?), Davie and whats-his-name that ran the Cooke City Corral Cafe - which is no longer a cafe. Cliff Anderson was a cook at the Cooke City Cafe then. He's dead now. So is Mort. Last time I was there, Betty had changed Ma's into a grocery store. All those good folks fired me at one time or another, and I don't blame them a bit: I was pretty bad! BUT BOY DID WE HAVE SOME FUN IN COOKE CITY!!!!! Does anyone remember Cheyenne, with his trailer, "Turtle"? I guess he bought a motorcycle, changed his name to "Wrench", moved to Red Lodge (or?), got married and started beating up his wife. (That's rumor: I don't know it for a fact, but it fits). Anyone remember when Stan (Stan the man) cooked at Ma's? He wore jeans with the knees out, two knives on his belt, motorcycle boots, a sleeveless undershirt, a long pony tail with a headband. He smoked in the kitchen and let the ashes fall onto the grill... Before that the old guy with an old Jeep Wagoneer, Old Bill??? cooked (and drank) at Ma's. He's gone now too. I'll never forget Ma's waitress Jan, careening off the walls between the bar and the cafe. She liked to take her breaks in the bar. Another waitress at Ma's, beautiful, blond Roxie, who's father told her she "was born on a Kansas wheatfield, and would die on a Kansas wheatfield." Remember Sprout? She worked for Ma's for a LONG time! What was that guy's name that owned the (Used to be the Watuk) All Seasons Inn - which is now something else? I can't remember his name, but I can remember him running a bunch of us out of his place, and telling us we couldn't "ever come back!!" It had something to do with a broken picture window in front of his building... Any one remember Guy and Jim, the twins? Last I heard Jim was a preacher in Great Falls, and Guy lived in the Bitterroot. Someone out there might remember my son: Jeff Barnett -- he worked at the Cooke City Corral, Bill and Joan's at the Pass, Log Cabin Cafe in Silver Gate, and a bunch of other places over the years. He LOVED Beef Lips -- but so did we all! He was a friend of Vicki and Crazy Bob -- who was later badly injured in a snow mobile accident. Also, my daughter Anna -- who was known as Pack-Head at the time, spent her summers in Cooke. Actually, she also went to school in Gardner one year when we stayed through the Fall. Her first job ever was at the little drive in food place, Two Bears -- was that the name of it? She was about 12. Do you remember Jim Greenley? He was an outfitter and a bad news guy in the early '80s. Had a son named Rick, I think. They were from Alaska. Do you remember Kenny Busch -- he tended bar at Mort's. And then there was Rickie, a Hell-raising bartender at Mort's. Can't remember a whole lot about her except her gold tooth, but she sure had some stories to tell! Remember the cabin on Lulu? I spent one whole summer there, doing laundry in the creek with red water, chasing off souvenir hunters with my .22 rifle, using the mickey-mouse (but cool) sauna, firing up the three, count 'em three wood stoves in the cabin when it got cold. I didn't steal any of the wood stoves, but later on someone else did. Anyone recall Bill Hansen, Bob Watts, Gene Wade and the mine exploration that took place in the early 80's on Daisy Pass? They used the "Old Post Office" as their headquarters. That was just the beginning of the recent mine fiasco in Cooke City. Last, but not least, I remember the terrible accident between Cooke City and Silver Gate that took the lives of several young people who were there for the summer -- now there forever. Well, I want to thank you for getting me to recall the "good old days" at Cooke City. If anyone has any UPDATES on the events and people I knew, I'd LOVE to hear about it!!!! e-mail me at [email protected] Sincerely, Marie (Harris) Watts, also known as "Cooke City Slugger" which in itself indicates some of what was going on during those years.
Marie (Harris) Watts <[email protected]>
Srephenson, MT USA - Friday, March 12, 2004 at 14:36:06 (EST)
Cooke City is a very special place. I'm not a snow person,
so am looking forward to summer 2004.
Cooke City is a very special place. I'm not a snow person,
so am looking forward to summer 2004.
I spent time in Cooke City in the summers of 1967 and 1968 whike attending a ski camp. I will be returning for the first time since then this year.Cooke City is a place I will never forget and am looking forward to my visit with my wife who has never been to Montana.
Jim Barrett <[email protected]>
Acworth , Ga USA - Monday, March 01, 2004 at 15:43:50 (EST)
"DUDE" I know we have had some conflicts in the
past but I want you to know that they are in the past. I don't
know if you ever did anything to hurt me, but if you did it is
water under the bridge. Remember the time the meteor blew and
flashed and spooked all the horse in the middle of the night.
I hope your doing well. Larry
In 1974 I worked for the Forest Service near Cooke City. It is a magnificently beautiful place. I want to visit this year for the first time in 26 years. I hope it hasn't changed too much.
Lead, SD USA - Monday, February 23, 2004 at 12:03:32 (EST)
Reading through this site sure brings back the memories!
I was in Cooke City way back then and I'm still here! I played
in a band around the area and it's surprising how many people
remember those "good 'ol days"! Anyway, the "Beef
Lips" Don't play too often anymore but you never know...
We're still alive & kicking! So, thanks for remembering!
Hi, I've never been to your fair city, but have seen lots of nice photos of the area. Looks like a beautiful place. The photos I saw came from my friend Jeri Harper. He talked alot about the many friends from Cooke City he had. Does any one know the where abouts of Jeri? He was headed towards St. George, Ut about 4-6 weeks ago. I haven't heard from him, wondering if he made it.
Jan <[email protected]>
Ukiah, CA USA - Wednesday, February 11, 2004 at 10:02:35 (EST)
Each summer a few friends and myself visit Cooke City as
a homebase while we fish the streams in and above Yellowstone
National Park. What a magnificent place!
Wow, We were surprised to find this site. We lived and worked at the Soda Butte Lodge from Sept. 2000- Dec. 2000. Then engaged, we are now married. And we didn't leave empty handed, our now two year old daughter, Laura, was made there. Some of the best memories of our life! So beautiful there. How is everyone, Tim, Kathy & Frank, Patty, Joan and Bill. We are still in New Hampshire, plan on taking a trip back out there as soon as Laura is old enough. Wishing everyone health and happiness!!
Curt and Krissy Edsall <[email protected]>
NH USA - Wednesday, February 04, 2004 at 11:55:20 (EST)
You don't realize how much you miss cooke until visiting this website! We lived in cooke with our two labs, MOCHA and ALEX on and off from summer 92 to spring 94. Lets see we worked just about everywhere.....miner's bartender, elkhorn, all seasons, prep cook & dishwasher @joan and bills. we lived in a few different spots, duplex across from the pine tree rest., old streamline trailer down near DUDE'S cabin. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW DUDE IS DOING, ALSO CHIPS, FRANK AND KATHY, AND KIM AND SHERRY, MARCIE? Anyway lots of love to all the cooke city survivors:)STAY WARM!!!!!!!!!!!!
alan and andrew kuperstein <[email protected]otmail.com>
winter park, fl USA - Tuesday, February 03, 2004 at 04:14:26 (EST) kee
Hi to everyone that I partied and made friends with in the summer/Fall/ winter of I think it was 96/97?? I had so much fun . I am sober now no booze for four years Cooke City really showed me a new way to drink. I bottomed out there, I wonder if I'd like it as much now that I'm not a drunk. Anyone who knew me I'm Andrea I dated Ryan Leahy for tthat year. I am moving back to MT. in a year and would love to hookup with some of the peaple I knew. Sarah, my friend from Alabama____________??? Bernie Feldcamp? I rented from Gay, did they eventually flatten those cabins? I miss Cooke ! The most beautiful place in the world!08879
Andrea Strand <[email protected]>
Big Sur, , Ca. USA - Saturday, January 31, 2004 at 03:28:54 (EST)
I worked in Cooke City in 1977. I enjoy visiting this site
and it brings back great memories. The folks I worked with were
great, the mountains were beautiful and the fishing was teriffic!
Gene's folk, Ruth and Gene Wade, would be thrilled to see their names on this website. Gene's dad especially was into promotion for Cooke City long before anyone else. He would be on the web everyday. We have lots of stories about Watuck Lodge and the 40's, 50's and 60's plus some photos. Marilyn Wade
Billings,, Mt USA - Sunday, January 18, 2004 at 11:42:18 (EST)
Hi Everyone, Testing the new guestbook setup, and apologizing to those who's entry I lost in the transition!
Mike Kay <[email protected]>
Meeker, CO USA - Saturday, January 17, 2004 at 21:09:54 (EST)
Spent some fun summers in Cooke. I miss the old A-frame
just outside of town. Visiting with the Menueys, Dave, Rosie,
Mitch and Jeff was always a treat. Where are you Jeff? Are you
still playing your guitar and singing? Remember when my family
and I all came to your cabin and you and I played guitars? (I
was horrible, you were terrific!) Hope to get to Cooke City soon.
WONDERFUL PLACE...BEAUTIFUL VISIONS...LASTING MEMORIES...I THINK OF YOU ALL OFTEN.
cheryl lowe <[email protected]>
Arlington , tx USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:13:35 (EST)
Just thought I'd leave a note to say hi! I was hanging in Cooke for a few summers in the mid-90's, working at Joan and Bill's and partying with the Cooke City Cream. I was another one from Maryland, along with Adam and Shawn, and brought Chris AKA On-The-Road and my crazy girlfriend Tonya. Hoped to move back, with baby in belly in 1998, but unreal events ended me in Flagstaff, AZ, and back to Maryland. Was lucky to get a visit there from Chris and Patty, and a few from Shawn, before moving to the DC area. Now I'm finally back out west again to CO with 5-yr old Saer and husband Joshua. I'll be up in town soon, though, coincidentally, work on the Beartooth Highway is leading me back to town. And I can't wait to be back in town again. See you soon!
Karen Amrhein AKA Groovy <[email protected]>
Castle Rock, co USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:11:44 (EST)
December 19, 2003: My husband, Wayne Schulz, and I met at Chico Hot Springs where we both worked the front desk in 2002. Wayne had come up from Cooke where he had lived and worked that winter, to fill in for me while I was out on leave. He has related a number of stories about Cooke to me, some of which he wasn't very proud of, but he always had a good word for Joan's pies. If anyone knows Wayne, know that he is doing well, getting healthy, and is a friend of Bill W's. I still say it was Divine Intervention that brought us together at a low point in both of our lives. Take care everyone, have a wonderful Holiday Season and a Blessed New Year!
Lois Anne Starr-Schulz <[email protected]>
Livingston, Montana, USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:10:14 (EST)
Seasons Greetings to all of you wonderful folks who love Cooke City as I do! May God Bless you in the new year!
Broken arrow, ok USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:08:43 (EST)
January 12, 1994 I took the bus from Wausau, WI to Cooke City, MT. What a peaceful move that was. I worked at All Season's Inn when Darrell and Patricia Crabb owned it. What a treat that was. I miss so many of you have/not will ever forget you. I sure would like to hear from my little buddy Erin Lynch (Mousey). Does anyone remember her or know how I can reach her? Here are some people I knew back then: Ricky Porter, Jim Karen, Dave (Erin Lynch), Chips, Joanne, Chris Warren, Frank Kathy (trail groomers), Dick (owned restaurant), Josh, Mike (owners son of Minors saloon), Cliff (Sammy), Kim, George, Mark (Al Bundy), Frank, Greg Nelson, Rick Vicky (Brother Sister), Guy (how's buster), Ned, Ramone, Wayne. Two of my local (billings) favorites were Joe Ratcliff Jimmy Jones. I have meet so many vistors that I miss dearly think of everyone often. If anyone know's of any of these people please contact me. I had the most healing time in my life when I moved there needed it desperatly. I then moved to Red Lodge, MT where there are more precious memories. God Bless all of you that came into my life those I helped. The mountains sure looked fake when I 1st arrived the air I will never forget. Sure wish I was still there to this day. Homesickness is what got to me. I am sure glad I came to this site. I have alot of stories to tell if you would like to hear them. I remember seeing all snow never relized there was a fence in front of my cabin unitl spring (came early the year I was there). Take care to all.
Barb Rueger (Cheezy) <[email protected]>
Schofield, wi USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:06:49 (EST)
I passed through Cooke City right after a long dry 9 day hike and camp in east yellowstone. Stayed at the Alpine Motel. This place, Cooke City, kinda rubs off on you a little when you leave. My soon-to-be wife and I will be headed through this way in June '04 after our wedding on the way to Jackson.
Brian Heath <[email protected]>
Springfield, mo USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:04:27 (EST)
Hi this is Dan and we have a cabin about a half mile away from cooke city. We visit about two to three times a year. We love going into the park and we love this country. Its a great place to be. We love the great people in cooke city and we think it's a wonderful place in the beautiful Rocky Mountains.
Dan Solberg and Family
Fargo ND, USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:02:45 (EST)
I worked in Cooke City in 1965, 1968 and 1969 for the Bureau of Public Roads. In 1965 we were surveying and building about a 5 or 6 mile stretch of highway from the Montana/Wyoming line down past Fox and Index Creeks to just a little beyond the Clarkfork River crossing. We built a new bridge at that location. Tom Edick was the project enginer. Bob Rickman was on the crew along with Mike Kay, John Yackey, Bill Jones and others. We got acquainted with Bill and Betty Somers. Vicky and Rick were pretty young then as were our two girls. We did lots of picnics, hiking, sightseeing, hunting and fishing. Sam Brady was at the general store then of course and we got to know him well. Anybody remember Wildcat ? Thats the only name I remember him by. Played a ukulele and sang at some of the local bars, mostly Hoosiers. He lived at and took care of a fraternity house in Ann Arbor, Michigan during the school year I believe. One of his favorite songs was Abdul Abulbul Amir who fought Ivan Skavinsky Skavar. I not making this up !! This song was written in 1877 by Percy French. Abdul (a Turk) did battle with Ivan (a Russian). It's a long ballad, about 15 verses and Wilcat sang it well. Grace owned and ran Hoosiers then. One of our favorite fishing places was the Yellowstone River upstream or downstream from Tower Jct. Of course the Lamar was good and Slough Creek. Vince Mus was just building the Mus Rest Motel then which is now the High Country I believe. We get back to Cooke about every other year or so and spend a few days. It's about 7500 ft. above sea level on the main street of Cooke I think. I believe the big Watuck Lodge was just being built at that time. Gene Wade built a smaller one first across the street and up a block or so. Near the old post office. Nick Babaluk had the Union 76 station then and some cabins. I'll think of more later about 1968-69.......Warren Frame..
Ronan, mt USA - Thursday, January 08, 2004 at 14:00:33 (EST)
Does anyone know or remember Shirl Felts? (worked at Watuck) If so see if she will get in touch with me. She's one of those people you just kick yourself in the ass for letting out of your life. Thanks Larry Brooks
Larry Brooks <[email protected]>
Bend , OR USA - August 22, 2003 at 14:34:06 (EST)
Visiting lovely Cooke City in October 2003!
Debbie Fuchs <[email protected]>
Millington, MD USA - August 24, 2003 at 14:33:13 (EST)
We had a great time in cooke city four wheeling and looking around we will be back late January thanks for a great time. You don't know how nice it is till you stay there for a time. THANKS FOR SHARING IT WITH US.
WALLY+VICKI <[email protected]>
WI USA - Thursday, January 08, 2003 at 14:31:19 (EST)
Use to visit on business with Yamaha. I lost contact with Boyd and would sure like to find him. I'm ready to snowmobile again. August 28, 2003
Bill Burbank <[email protected]>
Fullerton, ca USA - August 24, 2003 at 14:30:22 (EST)
30 years? It doesn't seem possible! SUE and RALPH GlIDDEN of the Cooke City Store are moving on. The store has been sold and this is their final year.
Cooke City Renegade
Billings , mt USA - Thursday, September 04 2003at 14:29:09 (EST)
THANKS I LOVE THIS SITE
JOHN GOODMAN <[email protected]>
Linz Astrial, USA - Thursday, September 05, 2003 at 14:27:56 (EST)
Every summer we journey forth to the beautiful northwest. One of our must do advenntures is to travel the Beartooth Highway and have lunch in Cooke City. No pun intended, the area is uplifting and gives us a sense of renewal. We're looking forward to our next visit in 2004. Have a delightful winter and spring.
Lanny and Linda Powell <[email protected]>
east moline, il USA - Thursday, September 12 2003 at 14:26:53 (EST)
i thought Cooke City was great.I had visited many western cities and Cooke was one of my favorites
tyler beckwith <[email protected]>
los angeles, ca USA - September 13, 2003 at 14:25:28 (EST)
cool town loved the guy across the streets with the wood bears he was a character
mike thulin <[email protected]>
Charlotte, nc USA - Thursday, September 18, 2003 at 14:24:09 (EST)
I worked at the Grizzly Lodge in the summer of '87. It made a lasting impression on my life. Thank you!
Kristi <[email protected]>
Santa Barbara, CA USA - Thursday, September 26, 2003 at 14:22:41 (EST)
i was just in jackson hole and yellowstone on my harley along with my wife.the hotel where we stayed in jackson told us about beartooth highway but we didnt have time to ride it.is it as nice and scenic as tetons and yellowstone? tony sims
tony sims <[email protected]>
Cleveland, TN USA - Thursday, October 05, 2003 at 14:21:29 (EST)
This is a very sad time in Cooke City. Fall is definitely here with winter just around the corner. This afternoon I will be leaving Cooke - just as all of my friends have in the last few weeks. Businesses shut down for the next few months as they await the snow mobile enthusists. I will miss all of my friends - and surprisingly many of the wonderful tourists who I came in contact with this year. God Bless you all!
Bismark, nd USA - Thursday, October 01, 2003 at 14:20:14 (EST)
Cooke City. What a beautiful place. I was there withe some friends August of this year. It still seems like yesterday. I can still feel the cool air and smell the wonderful smells of the Montana wilderness. I will be back one day but I know it won't be soon enough. What a hidden treasure!
Kevin Cox <[email protected]>
Hilltop Lakes, TX USA - October 14, 2003 at 14:19:25 (EST)
Well, I want to say hi to the people who run this website because they actually came and visited me at the YTP this summer in Cooke. I am unfortunately back in my home town, and I really wish i could be back in cooke.
Tara Wood <[email protected]>
Big Timber, MT USA - Saturday, October 18, 2003 at 14:18:08 (EST)
Hey.....just visited Cooke City 10/11/03. I and the folks I was traveling with say "thanks" to the people at The Alpine Inn. Nice clean, warm rooms with Color TV and HBO!!!!! We had a fun time!!
Debbie <[email protected]>
millington, MD USA - Monday, October 27, 2003 at 14:17:03 (EST)
The summer of '77. What a summer! I was one of the "Ohio crowd" who went to Cooke city to work at the Watucke. Jim Schmidt, Audrey, Lynn Nuesse, Jane Hall and others came out as well. I ended up marrying Lynn in '82 and we had two girls. Lynn just passed away about 18 months ago. Wow the times we we had. Camping up at Goose Lake, going to the "Hot Pots" in the middle of the night, late nights at Ma Perkins or in Silver Gate. I remember the bears coming down in July and going through the garbage bins outside the Watuck every night around 11:30 or so. I cannot believe how much we drank that summer. Enough for a lifetime but it was great at the time. I have always wanted to get back to Cooke City with my girls to show them where mom and dad lived but have not made it back yet. I will though. I have travelled all over the world on business and Cooke City stands out as one of the most unique and beautiful places I have ever been. If anyone from the summer of '77 sees this drop me a line..........Dan
Dan Dempsey <[email protected]>
GA USA - Wednesday, October 29, 2003 at 03:17 PM (EST)