Notices
Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

Montana Tour Report

Old 07-05-16, 02:34 PM
  #1  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 39,510
Mentioned: 211 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18530 Post(s)
Liked 15,893 Times in 7,459 Posts
Montana Tour Report

Between June 15th and June 25th I didmy third loop tour from/Missoula in the last 5 years. Photos are here:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/105349603@N05/sets/72157667672266654


(Click on the first photo and scroll through manually.)



Route map showing on the road camping locations here(started and ended at the Missoula KOA):

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/14890942



Not shown is the 23 mile out and back ride I did during myrest day at the fabulous Bike Camp in Twin Bridges, so total mileage was about 545, with the longest daybeing 83 and the shortest moving day being about 33. I incorporated severaldirt/gravel sections, including a rough, hilly but beautiful 20+ mile stretch betweenMelrose and Twin Bridges, where all I could hear were the sounds of nature as Iwatched the clouds float by. I had planned more dirt via unpaved Gibbons Pass on day two, but heavy rain the nightbefore convinced me to stick to the highways. On the weather front, I awoke tofreezing temps on the first day out of Missoula. Got rained on for the last 15miles of day one. It then rained most of the night, forcing me to cook in thecovered, outdoor vestibule of the vault toilet.

Day two started out nice as I made my way up to Lost Trailand then Chief Joseph Passes. I then encountered a light snow that changed tohail a few miles from the summit of Lost Trail, but the sun was back out shortlyafter I reached the top. Had another short hail episode about 10 miles outsideof Wisdom and almost got nailed during the last 18 miles to Jackson, but thedisturbance stuck to the ranch land and did not move over the road. The hotsprings lodge in Jackson that allows camping was not open that day, but I wasable to get 50% off on the price of a room at a small, drafty hotel across thestreet. Weather for the rest of the trip was great except for a drenchingthunderstorm on a dirt road on the penultimate day. The muddy road conditionsconvinced me to hole up at the first campground with water I came to. Workedout for the best because when, during the final day of riding, I checked outthe other places I was considering farther down the road, I realized I had picked the nicest one.

No big game quadrupeds, although I did see a gorgeous foxmaking his way through the tall grass of a ranch, a couple of young mule deerbucks with fuzzy antlers and a beaver that crawled up onto the bank of the…waitfor it…Beaverhead River. Birds, however, were everywhere. Sightings included sandhill cranes, herons, a bald eagle, ospreys, several other species of raptors, hummingbirds, mountain bluebirds and even two examples of the one species of Americanwhite pelican that is native to the state.

Camped every night except two. (One motel in Butte wasplanned.) Cooked all my dinners except three. Camped one night at the samelocation as Adventure Cycling’s Cycle Montana tour. On that tour were threepeople I had met during AC’s 2010 Cycle Vermont tour. Small world. Went to a senior rodeo for a bit,where the human participants and animal were all wearing Depends. J No falls, no flatsand, much to my surprise, very few mosquitoes, which is atypical for that timeof year. This year’s route included some mileage that that was not included inmy previous two trips, but some of the new mileage (between Twin Bridges andEnnis) I had ridden back in 2000. I was amazed to see how Ennis, which atMontana speed limits, is not that long of a drive from W. Yellowstone, hadexpanded since my last visit. I was there around the same time of year andcamped at the same fishing access campground. Back in 2000, the place wasnearly empty, and no one was using the boat ramp. This year the campground wasnearly full, many people were taking out their float boats after a day offishing and there were new-ish looking houses on the opposite bank of theMadison River. Big shout out to the Missoula REI for having my bike ready forme when I arrived, holding by bike box and backpack and then promptly re-boxingmy bike for shipment home.

Starting to look towards next year. I am considering headingback to Missoula and riding northwest into Idaho before returning back to Montana.
indyfabz is offline  
Old 07-06-16, 08:17 PM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Panama City, FL
Posts: 56

Bikes: 97 Schwinn Moab; 15 Surly Disc Trucker

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Beautiful pictures. I'm jealous. Sounds like a great trip.
jimmyj726 is offline  
Old 07-06-16, 09:13 PM
  #3  
SuperGimp
 
TrojanHorse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Whittier, CA
Posts: 13,346

Bikes: Specialized Roubaix

Mentioned: 147 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1107 Post(s)
Liked 64 Times in 47 Posts
That looks awesome but I'm not sure I'd want to hang out with myself for that long.

Gorgeous scenery though.
TrojanHorse is offline  
Old 07-07-16, 11:22 AM
  #4  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 39,510
Mentioned: 211 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18530 Post(s)
Liked 15,893 Times in 7,459 Posts
Originally Posted by TrojanHorse
That looks awesome but I'm not sure I'd want to hang out with myself for that long.



I enjoy my own company and like to have time away from constant human interaction. Back in '00 I did two month+ solo tours, one of which was in southern Spain, where little English was spoken.


Besides, I was on ACA's TransAm route for several days, so I stayed in places with a total of a dozen other cyclists. Then on Day 9 I camped at the same location as ACA's supported Cycle Montana tour. The leader of that tour and three participants had all been participants in ACA's 2010 Cycle Vermont tour which I was on. Truly a small world. And there is no shortage of strangers asking you what you are doing whenever you stop in a town. It even happens when you stop on the side of the road to take a photo. I had at least two motorists pull up to me and stop to ask me about my trip. It happens a lot in campgrounds, too. Even the guy seen in the one photo driving the cattle asked me about my trip. In all honesty, I know people are sincerely curious, but it can get a bit annoying after a while. One day, late in the trip, I was riding and having a hard time after a long climb (too much wine with dinner in Butte the night before). I was on a flat area heading towards a great descent to my campground for the night when I saw a cyclist coming the other way. He did a U-turn in front of me. When I caught up to him I asked "Are you lost?" He said he just wanted to say high. I cannot remember exactly what I said, but I made it clear that I wasn't interested in stopping to chit chat. I felt pretty bad for a few minutes afterwards. In the touring world, blowing someone off like that is usually considered the height of rudeness. Stopping to talk is a good way of getting recon, but I had already ridden that stretch twice before so, aside from road condition anomalies, he couldn't have told me anything I didn't already know.


Finally, I have to admit that I did have some "virtual" company in the form of a enchanting, redheaded lass who I had gone to junior high with and had seen once (a few weeks before my trip) since '90. We texted every day and talked many nights. We've gotten together twice since I got back and will be doing so again this Sunday, hopefully into Monday. And that's all I've got to say about that.
indyfabz is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
mcallaghan
Touring
12
11-18-15 02:18 PM
teacherlady
Touring
40
10-13-15 07:43 PM
lbkistler
Touring
2
05-02-13 12:13 PM
c3hamby
Touring
2
11-05-11 11:50 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.