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Adventures on the Streets of Butte

On the second day of the Evel Knievel festival, uptown Butte was alive with the sights, sounds, and smells of a carnival. Street vendors offered everything from hotdogs, hamburgers, and tacos to ice cream, lemonade and cold beer. I wandered down the street soaking up the atmosphere, as people of all ages shopped, ate, drank and enjoyed the beautiful day.


Along with the food, were t-shirts, riding gear, hand bags, and new tattoos. Something for everyone. Dwight Yoakam's Guitars, Cadillacs blared on one street, while on the next block over, the Scorpions' Rock You Like A Hurricane blasted the crowd that bustled in the street. In case you forgot the occasion for this revelry, giant images of Evel Knievel gazed down from various buildings.



There was also plenty of free entertainment on the street. A group of motocross riders performed a stunt show and risked their lives in true Evel Knievel fashion. The large crowd was very impressed when three of them raced side-by-side up the ramps and back-flipped their bikes in unison. Click the picture below to see a video of these guys in action.


Later in the afternoon, a couple of  Harley riders put on another stunt exhibition. These bikes were really loud which was good since "loud pipes save lives" and both of these riders risked serious injury to entertain the crowd. Click the picture below for a short video of them showing their stuff.


That evening, I joined the parade of bikes to cruise the Evel Knievel Loop around Butte. The Harleys dominated this event with a smattering of other bikes including one KLR, a Kawi dirt bike, and a modified Honda scooter. Click the picture below to see the ride video.


The procession of bikes moved through Butte as police cars and fire trucks guarded the intersections, so the parade had no interruptions. Most memorable, were the crowds along the streets that waved and cheered as we passed. It was great to be treated like a hero for just showing up to ride! This experience alone would have made the trip to Butte worthwhile, but I had one other stop to make.


Mountain View Cemetery is on Harrison Avenue, just south of I-90 in Butte. When you enter the cemetery,  a couple of signs point the way down a tree lined drive to Evel's final resting place. I stopped Sally in front of the head stone and killed the motor. Nobody else was around and I think it worked out better that way.


I took a few pictures and sat down in the grass nearby. I had followed the memory of my boyhood hero for several hundred miles to reach this place and I was in no hurry to leave. It just seemed right to sit alone under the trees and enjoy the solitude.