Saturday, June 10, 2017

The Continuing Saga of Bicycling the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route with my buddy Paul.  

A day off in Lima, MT, did wonders for us and once again we were off and riding.  Funny, if you don't count the interstate, there are three roads out of Lima (population 224) and with 6 GPSs and a paper map, we still managed to get lost. But only briefly and then we had a pleasant backcountry ride that got us to Idaho and Henerys Lake.  There, we camped in the front yard of an RV park and felt like kings.  All the RVers were jealous of our freedom.  "A man is free in relation to the number of things he can afford to leave behind." HDT. 

Leaving there we headed south and after a short but difficult day we camped at a golf course.  No, really.  It was nice and not terribly over priced.  So nice we delayed our start in the morning in order to play nine holes.  Hilarity ensued.  Golf is a great game if you think you aren't spending enough time looking for small round objects in deep grass or if you just want to practice your swearing.  

Back on the road we had a very pleasant ride toward Yellowstone and the were brutally punished for thinking the day would be easy.  

As we passed 7000' we started to encounter snow drifts.  Nothing is as fun a dragging your bike through snowdrifts unless you add in hoards of ravenous mosquitos, which we had.  Even when the snow drifts were far enough apart to make riding between the reasonable, the uphill speeds and tailwind made it easy for the mosquitos to keep up.  We couldn't even stop to eat.  Brutal.  

Once over the pass, we still weren't done with the drifts, although eventually I shouted for joy upon seeing an abandon van stuck in a snowdrift. Hey, somebody drove it that far!  Sure enough, after the van the trail was rideable.  We later met the girl who stuck that van and the short story is don't trust google maps explicitly. 

We camped at the most expensive campground ever, paying $40 for a patch of dirt between two dirt roads.  They also offered "cabins" that had a bunk bed, no electricity, no running water, no heater.  Just four walls and a roof for a mere $75.  

To make the deal sweeter, Paul and I both woke up with food poisoning (possibly due to some golf course kimchi) and were forced to stay another day, spending almost all of it sleeping in our tents.  

Finally leaving the Yellowstone area, we spent a long day on the pavement. That day ended with rain and sleet and a 9500' pass.  Easy enough to keep warm on the climb, the screaming descent... not so much.  

For lodging that night we got a cabin, electing not to camp in the near freezing temps.  Our cabin had two bunk beds and heat and lights, though not much else, $30. A deal, all things considered.  

If you've read this far, please leave me a message, either here or on Facebook.  It's helps me write knowing someone is reading it.  


  1. I'm reading it!!! I love it! Can't believe you guys golfed!

  2. Love the adventure!! So glad I can live vicariously through you and Paul. Stay safe!

  3. Sorry to hear you had such a rough day! Here's hoping calm tailwinds follow you the rest of the way!

  4. Your writing is better than ever. Keep it up!

  5. Great reading from my comfy coach! I'm excited to even know somebody that's doing this ride! Very inspirational! Brian

  6. Enjoying your posts very much - please keep it up!

  7. Never look back unless you are planning to go that way. HDT

  8. Keep writing, I'm reading every word! What an adventure. I'm jealous! John

  9. Although I am behind chronologically I started reading your blog with your entry dated January 2017. I’m binge reading. I expect to be blog-current the next time I see you at the T or C Brewery, where I am honored to have met you last night. Robert.