Road Trip 2011: Here’s a quarter, call Ennis.

Last night we bunked down in Ennis, MT. I am not a fan of much in Ennis. It is a beautiful place, but there is only one establishment there that has a halfway decent level of service.

The gas station with the ExxonMobile colors, I forget the name, is staffed by a bunch of monotonous drones. There was barely a word of welcome between the three of them.

On the way to dinner we spotted some cool metal horse and cowboy sculptures. Sadly this was my only picture from the day.

Banditos (the sign says “Southwestern food”) restaurant at the far end of town is a bit of a sham. The owner (or maybe just the host) seems to like greeting people at the door. Conveniently, before the customer gets the chance to look at the menu and the prices. A Southwestern Cobb salad (really just a Plain Jane Cobb Salad) was $14. House salads were $4. The menu claimed all the dressings were made in house, which I do not doubt. They were all watered down and boring as hell. I had the berry and sage dressing (berries with water?) and Mom and Ashley shared a tiny salad (think: served on a saucer) with ranch dressing. Apparently it tasted just like watered down ranch. Dinners came, they were mediocre and small portioned. The wait staff was quite friendly. I got a kick out of this: the special was enchiladas with crab and a lemon cream sauce. In Montana.

After dinner we topped the a little stand selling Wilcoxson’s deilicious ice cream. There were two girls behind the counter. One was working (sort of) and the other was doing nothing. As we approached to order the girl who was working promptly picked up her iPod touch and played around for about 45 seconds. After that she looked up and said, literally. “What do you want? I am waiting.” What the hell?

Upon checking into our room we were told we would be getting a two bedroom cabin for a certain price. We accepted and drove over to discover a one bedroom room with two beds. This was in a small hotel where it would be quite conceivable that the host would know the layout of all of the rooms. Oh well. We slept soundly and with exception of the used bandaid stuck to the disabled bar in the shower the room was clean. The staff was nice.

Our hotel, The Riverside, was at the far end of town just before the river bridge. Next door is a little park with a couple of baseball diamonds, some play equipment and a nice (if short) walking trail. Oh, and lots of bugs. Cute walk, and since the spring has held on so late this year the river was flowing quickly.

Overall, Ennis is set into some of the most beautiful country in Montana. Sadly, the little tourist trap of a town is kind of a disappointment. My favorite part about Ennis? It is 71 miles to the Yellowstone National Park West entrance.


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