Sunday, August 26, 2012

Day 5 - Montana to Idaho to Washington

Day 5 - American Made…and still the best!

Our journey continues, on our way out of Montana, and our memory will be just how pretty this State is. Well, assuming one finds the great natural outdoors pretty as opposed to the concrete and steel of the great urban jungle. Idaho is just as pretty. And although the people of Montana were sure friendly, seems the folks in Idaho raise the bar even higher. Pat has shared that he can envision living in Idaho sometime down the line. Sure can’t argue that choice.

One of the best memories of this trip came quite unexpectedly. Tim and I decided we needed something special to commemorate this trip. Something unique and long lasting, but also useful. Recalling that our Dad had always spoke highly of Buck Knives, we decided we would design a custom knife, have four made, present them to Pat and Sean at the start of the trip, and then be able to each carry them along the way, and hopefully for a lifetime. Using the time honored “110” style, we picked Ram Horn for the handle and with a few other tweaks, added the engraving “Wildride 2012” and had our four names on each blade. Once the order was placed, we realized that the turnaround time was 4-6 weeks. Problem was that we were leaving in less than 4 weeks and had to have them in time. We sent an email to Buck Knives and shared our predicament. The response we received was quick and positively amazing. We were very fortunate to get connected with Janet, and she moved mountains. With the support of her supervisor Sylvia, they finished our knives in one day. Custom, hand-built knives, American Made, in ONE DAY! We had them by the end of the week and they looked fantastic. I reached back out to Janet to thank her and discovered that they were located in Post Falls Idaho, which coincidently (really?), was right on our path. We knew we had to meet her in person.

We arrived at the Post Falls factory (and HQ), and found Janet to be just as nice as we imagined. Sylvia too. What we didn’t expect though were the two gentleman who wanted to meet us. None other than CJ Buck (President/CEO) and Chuck Buck (Chairman). After a very nice 10 minute chat, we were leaving, and Chuck learned that we were too late for the first factory tour, and the second one was sold out. Exhibiting the same concern for “customer satisfaction” we would learn was at the core of everything they did, He decided the only resolution was that he would personally take us on a tour of the premises. Really? The Grandson of the original Buck? He shared the next hour of his time with us, and insight he shared was illuminating. What a blessing, and a memory we will never forget.

With a few Buck keepsakes safely stowed away, we set off for Ellensburg, Washington. Looking forward to continuing with our journey, but will fondly keep this day with us for a long time.( In the video you can see both Janet and Chuck Buck.)

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