Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Never Heard of the Dunseith Turtle? Now You Have!

Turtle Mountain Tourism Association

" Welcome to the Turtle Mountain region, the four seasons playground of North Dakota and Manitoba! The Turtle Mountain Tourism Association is an organization dedicated to promoting the beauty, fun, and excitement of the Turtle Mountains. Northern North Dakota and southern Manitoba's best-kept secret, these hills and the surrounding area truly offer something for everyone.

"Come join us on the journey across Scenic Byway 43--North Dakota's highway of mystery and adventure, of beauty and peace. Stretching through Rolette and Bottineau Counties, this road will guide you and your family through charming towns, friendly people, and some of the most breathtaking views in the North Dakota/Manitoba region...."

You may have heard of the International Peace Garden, on the United States-Canada border. You probably haven't heard of the turtle of Dunseith, North Dakota.

Dunseith, in addition to being the only town of that name in the United States (there are quite a few 'Rockfords' for example), is home to a huge turtle - made out of truck wheels hubs. It's next to Dale's Truck Stop, on the south side of town. "You can't miss it."

My family and I lived in Dunseith during the eighties: it's a town south of the Peace Garden, just south of the Turtle Mountains themselves.

"Mountains" and "Hills" are comparative terms. I grew up in the Red River Valley of the North - some of the flattest land on Earth. There, a rise of land amounting to five feet in a mile might be called a "ridge." Most of North Dakota isn't particularly hilly, so the Turtle Mountains - a whacking great gravel and sand, with a little soil on top, left by the last glaciers - stick out like, well, mountains.

They're really not that tall. On the other hand, there are some really nice-looking views in them.


Brigid said...

I remember seeing a photo of this in your collection, but I fear I don't remember it myself. Then again, I was two the last time I saw it, right?

Brian, aka Nanoc, aka Norski said...


Right. You were a toddler - no great surprise that you don't retain a memory of that big green sculpture. Well, you mom and I do: and it's a cherished memory for us.

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