On I-15 between Salt Lake City, Utah and Butte, Montana there is a small town. Take the Lima exit and go to Dell, Montana. You will see a unique cafe, the Calf-A, in an old, brick schoolhouse with the menu on the blackboard. I hear from the locals that the population of Dell “depends on the time of day.”
Michael McCoy talks about the Calf-A in his travel guide, Montana – Off the Beaten Path – A Guide to Unique Places. He says,”The old building it is housed in was a school from 1903 until 1963, with an average enrollment of twenty kids, and then opened as a restaurant in 1978. Its walls, shelves, and bare pine floor are blanketed with memorabilia, fur-bearing trout, piles of old Life magazines, vintage rifles, an old piano with yellowed sheet music, rocks and fossils, a bedpan banjo, well-worn school desks, pull-down maps, spurs, kerosene lanterns, a ceramic water cooler, and a whole lot more.”
The photo is of Ted Lowe in front of the Calf-A. Jack and Ted were in the area for five days in mid-December hunting elk during the extended season. The wind was howling and the temperature hovered at 27 degrees below zero. They hunted, but had no success. The conditions were brutal for humans. The saw lots of elk, but just couldn’t get to them without freezing, sometimes they couldn’t even get the old Dodge started! When they did, they came home.
The Calf-A is also called Yesterday’s Cafe or Yesterday’s Calf-A. Click here
for the Travel Montana website and more information.