Thursday, June 13, 2013
Today I rode from Gardiner MT to Bozeman MT 77 miles and 2100' of climbing. I got a late start because It rained all night long and my tent was wet so I waited for it to dry before I packed it up. I was still on the road by 7:30. The ride was gentle rolling hills with various types of scenery from rocky craggy bluffs to lush green valleys and snow capped mountains standing at over 12,000' off in the distance. The valleys had lots of horses and some cattle or dairy herds here and there. There were lots of fancy ranches and Bed and Breakfast places along the road and hunting and fishing lodges. The Yellowstone River ran right next to the road for the first 50 miles. People were rafting down it and they sounded like they were having a good time even though I never saw any major rapids. The best part of the morning ride was the tailwind that pushed me along. I was hardly working to go 22mph. There was very little traffic and what there was came in pods of five or six vehicles at a time but the shoulder was good for most of the way so no problems there. I was spending a lot of time looking around admiring the mountains and things. I could have taken a lot of pics but I already have too many pics I think so I am taking fewer now. I stopped in Livingston for some lunch. While eating a woman sitting near me started asking me about my ride and also told me about her rides and her fly fishing habit. She was fun to talk to and gave me a break for a bit because if I wasn't talking to her I would have gobbled my food and left quickly. Then I left for Bozeman 28 miles away on interstate 90. I left Livingston and entered the freeway. I immediately knew my afternoon was going to be hell. My tailwind had turned into a headwind now. At first it was only blowing at 8-15mph but even that slows me down big time. But it quickly picked up intensity until it was blowing gusts at me of thirty mph. It was exhausting work to pedal into this high wind. I thought about my bad day back in Texas where I pedaled all day and only made it 31 miles because of strong headwinds. I kept going and had to go over Bozeman Pass which is not even that high at 5700' or so. I looked down at my speedometer and I was only moving 3.2 mph. I tried to speed up but I just could not get any speed up. I had to rest a few times before I made the pass and then I thought I was going to have a downhill coast to make up for lost time but the wind was blowing even harder on the other side of the pass and thundershowers hit me at the same time. I pedaled hard and hit 8 and sometimes 9 mph on the downhill. It took me about 4 hours to get to Bozeman only 28 miles. I was exhausted when I arrived and stopped at a service station and ate a hot dog and gatorade which I almost never eat or drink these items. Then I went to a campground about a mile up the road and setup camp, took a long hot shower, did laundry and my internet then next I am going to sleep to the sounds of rain. Good night.