My Route

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Day 48: Saturday, 18th August. Destination: Sunset Motel, New Town, North Dakota

The day started with a straight 17 miles along Federal Route 83 into a headwind, the dull monotony of the wide road and the passing trucks adding to my treasured memories of Minot. Turning off onto a familiar two-lane country road came as a relief, adding to which the remaining 56 miles of the day were a straight line heading due west – with a tailwind. Nothing much to look at, excepting short-cropped fields of yellow grass. Lunch was to be at a little town 1 mile off-route called Makoti but a sign at the junction informed me it was closed on Saturday. Closed? On Saturday? So, lunch was provided by the gas station, which served microwave egg muffins and soda.

New Town was a dusty place with little in the way of charm. Low, shop-front buildings with a road running through it – that’s about your lot. The owner of my motel said that things were looking up for New Town, as oil prices have brought a renewed interest in the reserves in these parts. Arrived early in the afternoon, but the library was shut (being the weekend) so I had nothing to do but wander up and then back down the main street. New Town is located close to (but not on) the banks of Lake Sakakawea - a name that meant nothing to me but is beginning to take on a resonance as the Lewis & Clark trail beckons.