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So this happened: we bought a Jeep.

We’ve been looking for a vehicle to tow behind the RV and Jeeps came highly recommended. Paul had a Jeep in high school, but this is the first one we’ve owned together. And what do you do when you own a Jeep? Apparently, you drive it to the highest point nearby. In our case, this was Pilot Peak—a fire lookout.

We were smart enough to go with seasoned Jeep owners Fred and Colleen. When you’re off-roading, some—if not most--of the trails aren’t well-marked. It would be easy to get lost.

You know the expression trial-by-fire? Just for the fun of it, we agreed to start out at Briceburg and do the “Burma Grade” to “see how the Jeep performs.”

Okay, this was a crazy idea. And scary. I credit Paul with having nerves of steel because I was freaked out from the onset by the steep grade, jarring pot holes, crazy tight switchbacks, and narrow (I swear it started out as a burro trail) road. We made it to the top and saw some pretty amazing vistas, but the climb wasn't one I'd rush to do again. In fact, I’ve added “Jeep the Burma Grade” to my Once-In-A-Lifetime list (meaning once is enough; I never have to do it again.)

I’d love to share some of the shots from the climb, but, honestly, I was too busy holding on for dear life in the back seat of the Jeep with my sister-in-law, Lynn. But here’s one from when we finally reached the top and were horizontal once more. (See that trail in the background? It’s an off-shoot we opted not to take. It looks fairly benign from this angle, but it looked like you’d be balancing on a tight rope from another angle. No, thanks.)

But once the trail calmed down, we enjoyed the drive to Pilot Peak. There were still tons of ruts from winter’s rains, dust clouds galore, and dozens of downed trees to dodge so we got the full “off-roading” experience. And once we reached the top, the view was definitely worth it.

As they say, downhill was a breeze, and we safely made it to Coulterville where we enjoyed a beer on the patio.

Last week's Q&A was: Have you ever been skateboarding? Yes or No?

I asked because my amazing granddaughter, Rya, just celebrated her 15th birthday and a skateboard was on her list.

As for the skateboarding question, my answer—like about half of you—is yes. Many years ago, I was a skateboarder. My mother brought home a gorgeous mahogany board from California. I’d never seen one before, but it didn’t take me long to start flying down the sidewalks of 1st Street in my home town of Brookings, South Dakota. I loved the sense of freedom, the speed, the skill it took to avoid breaking something—namely a body part. As the sport’s popularity grew, lots of people started boarding, and some bad person stole mine out of the garage. After that, I lost interest in the sport. (A shiny new Schwinn two-speed assuaged the pain.)

Now, I’m content to watch my grandchildren…and the occasional X Game on TV. Some of those athletes defy gravity.

My two randomly selected winners this week are:

Gretchen Miller


(Gretchen and Heidi congrats. Please email me your pick of either a $5 Starbucks or a $5 Amazon gift card.)


This week’s Q&ADo you have a tattoo or body piercing?

(Two winners will be chosen by random drawing to receive either a $5 Starbucks gift card or a $5 Amazon gift card. Please reply the usual ways:
email or on my DebraSalonenAuthor Facebook page.

I have exciting news! MONTANA BLUEPRINT FOR LOVE, Book 1 in the Property Sisters of Montana series is going to be FREE for a very short time. I have a BookBub ad coming out a week from today, but it should be free globally at all vendors before that.

I love the McCall sisters and this series so much. If you haven’t read all three, here’s a great way to check it out and save money—download all 3 books for the price of 2!

PS: I also noticed Amazon was doing some price tinkering with the print
of this book. You may be able to save a buck or so, if you prefer print.

Stay well, my friends, and happy reading,


Next week: BookBub magic…will we reach #1?

Debra Salonen's Book List

Montana Blueprint for Love
Meet Me in Montana
All the Stars in Montana

Her Forever Cowboy
Never Say Never
Caleb's Christmas Wish
A Baby After All
Love, After All
That Cowboy's Forever Family
Forever and Ever, by George

Prince Charming Undercover
The Daddy Gamble
Risky Baby Business
A Match Made in Vegas

Montana Secret Santa
Sweet Summer's Kiss

Black Hills Baby
Black Hills Billionaire
Black Hills Bad Boy
Black Hills Bachelor
Black Hills Native Son
Black Hills Outcast
Black Hills White Knight
Black Hills Rancher
Black Hills Stranger
Black Hills Legacy

Montana Cowgirl
Montana Cowboy
Montana Darling
Montana Maverick
Montana Gift
Montana Miracle

Her Hero to Love
Her Rogue to Tame
Her Rebel to Kiss



Copyright © 2021 Debra Salonen