Saturday, June 28, 03
This update being made from: Sheridan, MT
You might want to read Norm's entry below this one first.
In Wisdom we stayed the night in the American Legion Park. Luckily some thoughful person decided to build a screened off picnic shelter at the park so that unprepared bikers who happen through can cook dinner and lounge around without being swarmed by giant mosquitoes. Going to the bathroom was a whole different problem. Most of us headed into town to the bar or store rather than using the questionable looking outhouses. And we did meet a few nice locals. The bartender at Fetty's was really nice and made Jesse, Morgan, and I Shirley Temples. She also gave us ice for the those of us who have tender body parts that they want to last until Boston.
The next morning we stopped at the store on our way out of town to buy bread and some other needed items. It had closed at 6pm the night before and with the technical problems and waiting we had to do at the top of Chief Joseph pass we got there just a bit late. That's one of the problems with small towns, everything shuts down so early. I guess I understand why, but when we're traveling sometimes it does get a little inconvenient.
The first town on the way to Dillon was Jackson and they have some Hot Springs there. They also have a mercantile store which sells huge hand-scooped hard ice cream cones from $1.50. Many of us partook in the ice cream and it was delicious even at 10:30am.
After Jackson we headed towards Big Hole pass, the first of two medium sized climbs for the day. About a mile up there was stoplight for construction on the highway. Unfortunately I had to turn around and go back to Jackson to use the bathroom at the mercantile. Good thing I did, when I pulled up, there were Morgan's gloves sitting on the bench. On the way back I ran into a guy coming the other way. We stopped and I told him about our trip and the juggling and where we were going and give him a card. Turns out he was taking the "scenic route" from Topeka, Kansas to California. I don't think I got his name, so mystery biker, if you read this, leave a comment or sign our guestbook and tell us who you are. It's interesting talking the short conversations we often have with bikers headed the other way. We've seen a lot of them and most involve just talking about where we are going and what to expect down the road for the next few days.
The construction turned out to be a whole large crew of assorted trucks and machines and steamrollers laying new blacktop. Riding by them was kind of stinky, but I really love how steamrollers literally make the ground shake when you go by them.
Posted by Josh @ 05:35 PM CST Link [more] |
It's odd how after a couple of days on a bike everything tends to blur together. Even now I am having trouble remembering exactly were we have been and what we have been doing sense we last updated. I'll try anyways.
After leaving Missoula we were went through Hamilton and ended up in Darby. Just before entering Hamilton we where hit by a very quick and intense thunderstorm. The rain and wind lasted long enough for us to get our rain gear on and then stopped. Yeah Irony and being really wet for hardly any reason at all.
Once in Darby we met up with an awesome guy named bill who let us stay in his house for the evening. I will have to admit that the property surrounding his house was the prettiest I have ever seen. Not that but he had some excellent advise concerning our route. Thanks bill.
The next day we went over Chief Joseph pass. Mike had some problems with something on his wheel so while Seager and him were patching things back together the rest of us celebrated by sleeping at the top. Thanks for the nap guys.
The best part about climbing over mountains is that you get to go down them. To put things in perspective it took us all morning to climb the thirteen miles to the top of the pass (the wait for mike and Seager was a long one). The rest of the day was only a couple of hours. It's always great to be able to coast at about twenty miles per hour.
That night we camped in wisdom and the name of the town is a little misleading. Nothing against the town but nobody should have to put up with a mosquito to humans ratio of about ten million to one. To read more click here. The only highlight for the evening was talking to some bikers that we met earlier that day who were staying in the same town. They were also doing a cross country tour and our routes matched up for a couple of days.
Anyways, I am going to let Josh talk about them in our next entry for yesterday written today.
Good luck all,
Posted by Moses @ 04:33 PM CST Link [more] |
Tuesday, June 24, 03
The morning after lochsa lodge can be described as nothing but routine. Meaning that there was nothing ordinary about it. Josh wasn't feeling well and we all had a long climb ahead of us. Thankfully we had a rest day to look forward to in Missoula so we had some motivation. The climb went pretty much as expected and we all enjoyed some free hot chocolate and coffee at the top, courtesy of the Lolo pass visitor station. After a brief downhill jaunt Jesse blew one of his tires and we used our last reserve tire to replace it. For anyone who is curios, we have gone through at least seven by now. There is nothing worse than knowing that if something goes wrong there is nothing you can do about it.
Coincidentally that is exactly what happened. After a short and strong pull by myself to Lolo we headed off to Missoula. About two miles from town Mark's rear tire blew. By this time we have become used to the sound of a gunshot emerging from our tires but we don't really like it. Anyway, we separated so we could try and find a place for the evening while mark and seager tried to fix their tire. They were eventually successful due to a large amount of duct tape and luck. Jesse was able to find a place to stay at an ex-frat community house thing and we all celebrated by enjoying our first buffet of the trip. As a warning to buffet's "If you see us coming towards your restaurant, don't let us in. We will eat more food than you can afford."
Finally, we have all been enjoying our day off. First on the agenda was the long placated desire to sleep in. Personally I didn't get up until nine o’clock, which seemed like a long time to me. Next we all hit up some bike shops looking for new and better tires and various other things. Currently we are in the University of Montana library updating. Tonight we plan on doing some juggling in a park, watching a movie, and sleeping...lots of sleeping.
In closing I'd like to say hello to Abbey. I hope your mouth doesn’t hurt too much.
Posted by Moses @ 05:34 PM CST Link |
right now we are in missoula, montana and I will catch you up on the last few days.
We have got alot to talk about since the last entry so some of this mite be a little brief. Friday morning we were all a little excited because the elevation map showed alot of downhill. But the down side was that it was raining out. Once I made scrambled eggs for breakfast, if you knew me I am a huge egg freak, we started to pack up and made all are gear rain proof. I put on my rain pants and jacket and went outside to the awaiting downpoor of drops of rain. We were on the bikes and I was miserbly uncomfortable so we stopped 11 miles out and I threw my rain pants off my body to the ground with a sigh of relief. After that the day was mostly downhill with a deafening headwind. We were very tired and wore by the time we reached Whitebird. Luck was on are side as we found a church to stay in. Later that night Norm and I for some unknown reason started to climb up the side of a gigantic hill/mountain. When we were climbing up a 50lb rock slipped and fell on Norm's arms. Luckly, must have been since luck was on are side he was ok and we pressed on. An hour later we had reached the summit of who knows what peak and felt great for such an accomplishment. The view was awsome! The climb the next morning was not as expected. It was easy in a way. That day there happened to be a bike race to the top. We started earlier than the race so we made it to the top first. Some lady at the top thought we won but we explained what happened and are couse and she gave us money for food. Also we would like to thank Bob for his donation to the cause. We finished that day with not to much other excitment. That night we stayed in Lowell at a campground and performed for some rafters which donated some money, too. I was dreading the graduall climd on are elevation map from Lowell to Powell. It turned out to be very scenic and it rained alot. We rode along the Locsha river the whole time. It was very foggy and cloudy so close to the end the sun came out and we rode alomost in the clouds as they evaporated. One of the coolest experiences I have had! That night we camped outside the Locsha lodge and we met a couple that had rode from Yorktown, VA. It so happend that she was a physical therapist so she had tips for my brother and my knees. We talked with them and had a performance that night. Locsha lodge was one of the funnest days for me yet.
Norm will take it from here, se ya soon
Posted by Morgan @ 04:50 PM CST Link |
We have certainly learned a lot in our first few weeks on the road. One of the things that we have found out is that there are not enough hours in the day to get everything done. We have decided to take a bit of a shortcut from our original route in order to shave off some mileage. We will be departing from the originally planned route at Muddy Gap, which is just East of Jeffrey City, Wyoming. From Muddy Gap, we will be taking Highway 220 Northeast to Casper. At Casper we will get on Highway 20 and take that into Nebraska. We will go East on Highway 20 across the Northern part of Nebraska to O'Neill. From there we will take Highway 275 to Omaha. This should save us several hundred miles of riding and allow us to have some more free time off the bikes to juggle in the overnight towns.
Posted by Jesse @ 04:39 PM CST Link [more] |
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