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Day 68-71 miles

faces-2Taking the slow road to Lolo, 13 miles outside of Missoula, MT.

68-Lolo, MT Were all kicking the pace down. We expect a casual ride to the coast with lots of short days and layovers. The weather and our bodies have held up well for the most part in the push to be sure we made the trip on schedule. Now we are enjoying the sights. Today was still a lot of miles but mostly downhill riding along the east side of the jagged Bitterroot Mountains, with even a bike trail for most of the day.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   There is vast amounts of wilderness here. There have been a number of bighorn sheep reintroductions in this area to reverse their near extinction from domestic sheep and goat diseases. The Wild Sheep Foundation raises funds for these efforts and to maintain their habitat by raffling off a single bighorn sheep licence, the winning bid averaging $170,000. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We did not see any bighorns here but did see lot of mule deer. They were not frightened by us and continued to graze peacefully as we watched. Mule deer are typically found west of the Missouri River and can be distinguished from whitetail dear by their running style called “stotting” (bouncing on all 4’s simultaneously), the black tip on their tail, and by the fact that their rack continues to fork off of previous forks (instead of all forks coming off one stem). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We stayed in Lolo, MT. It is from here that we start our westward push through Idaho and Oregon.

Day 67-57 miles

faces-2Two routes to to Sula

67-Sula, MT We left Jackson, MT and the comfort of its hot springs in a very cold morning. We followed part of the 1,170 mile Nez Pierce National Historic Route and more of the return route of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. These go up and over what is now known as Gibbons Pass, the crossing of the Continental Divide used by Indians, explorers and hunters prior to the construction of route 93 (the Bitterroot Highway).  Ironically, this pass was named in honor of the commander who chased the 800 “non-treaty” Nez Pierce Indians into this area and whose surprise attack in 1877 left hundreds dead, the majority being women and children. These Indians were fleeing their homeland in Idaho to avoid being forced into a reservation whose boundaries were shrunk by 90% after gold was discovered there. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Half of our riders followed this historic dirt road  while the others stayed on the smooth macadam of route 93, the latter of which passed briefly into Idaho before ending back in Montana. These beautiful valley’s were home to lots of birds and we even saw a badger.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABadger The white flowers are called bear grass, a flower in the lily family that blooms every 3 years and whose stems the bears eat. This was considered a banner year for them and some grew as tall as June. Maybe that was what Don was looking at when he fell off his bike over the cliff. Tucker once again has his own battle wound to stay in solidarity with his hero. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 66-26 miles

faces-2Even the best laid plains fail when there is a hot springs and bar involved.

66-Jackson, MTIn the west the temperature can vary greatly within a single day. We woke to a brutally cold morning where even the spilled milk froze. We bundled up with the intention of riding 42 miles through the mountain-surrounded valley termed the ” Big Hole” by French trappers and later as the land of 10,000 haystacks. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA In part this was due to the local invention of the “beaver slide” to rapidly produce giant haystacks that can survive the elements for months and even years, a horse drawn contraption that is still used in various parts of the west. Ranching first began here in the mid-1800’s to support the wagon trains along the Oregon trail. Later it was realized that these grasslands can fatten cattle as well as grain resulting, at its peak, a population of 27,000 cattle. Ranches were formed here as shelter from bad weather, stopping points for weary travelers, and break for cattle who need to rest since they loose 1% of their body weight per 10-15 miles of walking. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Today we say lots of old equipment and the use of some new.  This cowboy trotted a horse and dog alongside his 4-wheeler and let the horse loose in a field with others, creating quite a stir among them. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA This also was a portion of Lewis and Clarks return route and the Big Hole Pass pass at 7400′ was one of the highest they crossed. From there you can see over 400 square miles on a clear day. Here we saw the camas plants that early explorers thought were lakes but are in fact lilies whose roots the Shoshone used as a food source for the Corp of Discovery. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA It was a cold ride down to Jackson where we planned on having a hot lunch and taking a quick dip in the 104.8F hot springs. Instead, the siesta was extended overnight. The dogs spent their days looking for rodents, a favorite pastime and Becky is becoming more comfortable in retirement. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 65-50 miles

faces-2We are still following in the footsteps of history.

65-Bannack State Park, MT The wide valley that we moved through today has been well used. The remains of prehistoric small mammals that lived 37-38 million years ago were discovered here, some species that have never been found elsewhere. The roads we are following began as Aboriginal trails that converged near Beaverhead Rock, the prominent formation that Sacagawea used to guide the desperate Lewis and Clark Expedition to the home of her tribe in the winter of 1805.  Sacagawea knew this area from her childhood, having been kidnapped from there at the age of 12 by the Hidatsa and then bought or won by a fur trader 28 years her senior, Toussaint Charbonneau (a man with another young indian wife). The Expedition hired Charbonneau knowing that her heritage as a Shoshone might also be necessary to obtain the horses needed to cross the Rockies. In a famous twist of fate, the Shoshone chief that the Expedition met at Beaverhead Rock was none other than Sacagawea’s brother, a fact that may have been crucial to the survival of the Expedition. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALater these roads were used by trappers, miners and traders traveling between Alder Gulch and the town of Bannack, the territorial capital of Montana before Virginia City. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFUDb-day.65-051 A stage coach stop was established in this valley in 1863 and the road linking these towns became notorious as the Road Agents Trail because of the large number of robberies during the 1860’s. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We stayed at the well preserved ghost town of Bannack, now a Montana State Park.       Bannack1Bannack2Bannack3Paul left the group to head to the Pacific with the help of the Poorman’s.

Day 64-43 miles

This was a short day with everybody taking their time.

64-Twin Bridges, MT The one big climb that took a full 1′ 45″ to go 10 miles. This was followed by a long downhill that followed the Alder Creek and the many historical remnants of the gold rush era that are still preserved in the region. At the base of the mountain are 2 towns that have become popular wild west tourist destinations, the largest of the 9 gold towns along the Gulch in 1863. The first was Virginia City, the territorial capital of Montana from 1865-1875 which became abandoned after the gold was gone and because the trains bypassed it. Virginia City’s buildings were “reclaimed” and became a National Historical Landmark in 1961. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFUDb-day.64-029 Within a few miles is Nevada City, a conglomerate of 90 buildings of the period that have been placed there from around Montana and are staffed with people wearing outfits of the day to explain what life was like during that time. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  At its peak, there were 10,000 people who lived along this 14 mile stretch of road that is part of what is called “Vigilante Trail”.  Gold dredging began in 1899 and continued for about 20 years, an activity that supposedly financed Harvard University and the whose equipment and tailings are still piled along the road. Up to the 1920’s the road was lined with prospectors, road agents and vigilantes. This well preserved house is Pete Daly’s roadhouse. It was suspected to be the hangout for the region’s most notorious criminal gang, the “Innocents”. This gang was reputedly led by Henry Plummer, the Sheriff of Virginia City and Bannack, MT. His deputies were thought to be the gang members. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Localized storms missed us for most of the day and most stayed at the city park in Twin Bridges, MT which has a permanent “hostel” just for bikers. Don and Audrey went on to Dillon but those that stayed here enjoyed a wonderful steak dinner and a local rodeo.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFUDb-day.64-033

Day 63-72 miles

faces-2A cold and wet night at the West Yellowstone KOA portended a long day on the bike. Instead, it was a long but fantastic day through a unique countryside, filled with history and wildlife.

63-Ennis, MT Our route paralleled the epicenter of the brutal  August 17, 1959 earthquake. This is still considered one of the most devastating geologic disasters in the Rocky Mountains, begun by an earthquake that measured 7.5 on the Richter scale. In addition to the predictable damage of an earthquake to buildings and roads, an 80 million ton landslide fell from a 8,000′ peak along Hebgen Lake which is located slightly northwest of Yellowstone. This landslide buried 19 of the 28 fatalities among people camping along Highway 287 and it also produced hurricane force winds that literally ripped the clothes of some of the survivors. It created a dam across the Madison River 225 feet deep, 1 mile long and 1/2 mile wide. Immediately a new 5 mile long, 190′ deep lake formed upstream. Quake Lake is slowly eroding the dam breast that formed it and thus the lake is shrinking, forming the “bathtub ring” of dead trees around the lake edge. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Many geysers in Yellowstone were also effected, an number of which simultaneously erupted with the first major shock wave. Some geysers also increased flow significantly while Old Faithful’s frequency of eruptions changed permanently. It now has 20 eruptions per day instead of the 21 that were routine prior to this earthquake. Most of the thermal features of the hot springs were only effected briefly, with water ebbing from 363 and increasing in 333 others-many of which and no recorded history of being active before.  While exploring these sites, we saw eagles and long horn sheep at very close range. We even met all the folks from Pennsylvania who happened to be in the state of Montana at one turnout. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The sun came out for the rest of the ride through one of the fly fishing hotspots in Montana. We stayed the hip litter western town of Ennis.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFUDb-day.63-092

Day 62-53 miles

Pain 1Still heading west-into Montana at the end of the day.

62-West Yellowstone, MTWe took a quick tour of the western side of Yellowstone, our nation’s first National Park. We knew enough to leave early to avoid heavy traffic but still had the time to see the sites that make this park so famous. The park is basically a figure-8 with the bottom loop surrounding an active volcano caldera. This is what gives life to all the hot springs and geysers found throughout the park. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Everyone went to Old Faithful, many more than once. In terms of wildlife, there was one wolf sighting and numerous elk and bison viewings. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We followed the Madison River along the northern loop of the park for most of the day  and crossed the Continental Divide 2 more times. It was a very easy day with storms being the biggest issue.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFUDb-day.62-032OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 61-40 miles

faces-2We hit 3000 miles today OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 

61-Grant Village, Yellowstone This small ride connected the majesty of the Tetons with some of the wildness of its northern neighbor, Yellowstone. The stretch between the parks is a 10 mile parkway that is managed by the National Park Service to provide a permanent connection between the 2 parks.  The headwaters of the mighty Snake river cuts through this stretch of roadway and will eventually travel through Idaho and dump into the Columbia river In Washington state. Yellowstone-Map2SnakeRiverNicerMap There are numerous other rivers in the Yellowstone area. As soon as you enter the park there is a short hike to Crawfish Falls. Today’s ride only registered on the “suffer meter” because of the one climb to another Continental Divide crossing and because of the miniscule space we had to ride on and the massive amount of traffic that passed within feet of us (a large percentage being RV’s or having a trailer attached). We spent the night in a Yellowstone campground, Grant Village. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 60-66 miles

faces-2We followed the Wind River Valley into the Tetons today

60-Coulter Bay, Tetons      Even the views before the Tetons never cease to amaze us. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA This is bear country and the warnings along the way were backed up by bear tracks on the road. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Along the way there is also a memorial that celebrates the work of the Tie Hacks. These were loggers at the turn of the century who could cut trees and hand shape them into ties that were eventually floated to Riverton, WY on the spring run-off. It was hard and dangerous work that drove the economy in this region for many years until gas powered equipment took over.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA It was a long climb to the top of the Togwotee Pass, one of the three nearby passes that go over the Continental Divide. The ride to the top is spectacular and the view of the Tetons on the other side is breathtaking. The weather was fantastic. It was an awesome day. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 59-75 miles

Pain 1Spectacular day!

59-Dubois, WY The weather was perfect and the winds were behind us. We flew through this surreal landscape. It was the easiest 75 miles for all of us, even with the climbs. We took time to humor Scott and do a little bird watching and read the historical markers. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe traveled through the northern and western parts of the Wind River Reservation which is home to the Eastern Shoshone Indians. This Reservation is split between the these Shoshone and the Northern Arapaho Indians who live in its southeastern portion. Both tribes hunted buffalo but had very different cultures so living together has required a great deal of cooperation. The Wind River Reservation is also unique in that it is the only reservation where the inhabitants picked the land upon which they were compelled to live. It is also surprisingly wet. The geology is that of the desert but water is flowing through creeks and rivers of all sizes, the largest being the Wind River that eventually flows into the Bighorn River.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 58-Layover Lander, WY

A lazy day spent saying our goodbyes to the friends that drove in to visit last night. All of us took the time to see the Sinks Canyon located about 6 miles outside of town. The water of the PoPo Agie River disappears into a canyon wall and reappears 1/4 mile downstream at “The Rise” in about 2 hours. There are large numbers of native Rainbow and Brown trout that live at the base of The Rise since they cannot go further to lay their eggs and because people feed them from the overlook. The water flowing into The Rise enteis not as much as one might expect. It can be seen re-entering the river       on the top left of the second photo. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALater, Don & Audrey took the dogs on a short hike to a 100′ waterfall along the same river. IMG_20140622_131908_474IMG_20140622_134812_866IMG_20140622_141722_783

Day 57-58 miles

Pain 1Early birds get the worms…

57-Lander, WYWe are leaving early each day to avoid the high winds that pick up around 10:00. The entire ride through the Wind River Range was smooth and spectacular. Here there are 53 granite peaks over 13,000 feet tall. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We ended up in the town of Lander who provide a lovely city park for free camping up to 3 days. This area is not as windy so they are able to spray for mosquitoes. We had a great evening with friends from the area dropping by with dinner and music.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 56-68 miles

Pain 3Today’s ride was full of the history of America’s westward expansion.

56-Jeffrey City, WYWe left by 6:30 to avoid the winds. We crossed the Continental Divide twice in the first part of the ride. The scenery was otherworldly and quiet, with one more dead town being a failed resupply stop. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We were following the Oregon Trail, used by settlers heading to the South Pass over the Rockies and on to many areas west. One key guiding features to get them to the water supplies and grasslands surrounding the Sweetwater River was a “gunsight” notch in the mountains called “Split Rock” that could be seen for days in each direction. The ruts from the stagecoaches can still be seen embedded in the ground. The Pony Express used this route during its short 11 month history. Its future was doomed with the advent of the the telegraph in 1861. Real cowboys still roam this land. Some on ATV’s, some on horses but they probably don’t complain about the strong winds and outrageous mosquitoes found in this area. We ate and slept in the once thriving Uranium mining town of Jeffrey City, WY OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 55-42 miles

faces-6

55-Rawlins, WYBrutal winds for the 2nd half of the ride.  This is not unusual for the area. The first stretch of highway had wind fences lining the road and we knew it would be worse on the westbound stretch of Rt 80. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We blew by all the interesting things on route including the salt hills in the area, OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA spectacular views of the North Platte River system, and historic sites including those for the Overland Trail & Fort Steele. We did pass close to the Sinclair Refinery which can be seen in the background of the following picture. June stayed with Don & Audrey today since Walt was out fixing his bike. We could not bring ourselves to camp so instead found lodging in the town of Rawlins, WY. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 54-68 miles

faces-4 “The road goes on forever and the party never ends…”

The day was touted as all downhill but it felt like it was filled with climbs. We crossed into Wyoming today and saw our first bald eagle. 54-Saratoga, WYOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The valley’s are so vast that we saw the crest of what turned out to be the biggest climb of the day from 12 miles away. It can be seen at the very top left of the next photo if downloaded (I can’t get the photos to expand lately). The next 2 photos are progressive shots as we reached the crest just to give perspective of how long it takes to get there. The last is the view when we were over the top.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We hit our first town to refill water at 50 miles and just beat a storm in. This isolation gives Riverside had a captive market. They had 2 thriving bars side by side and could even sell their firewood at a dollar a piece.  We only had 20 miles to ride after this town but half of them were filled with nasty winds that had Bill so concerned with rider safety that he tried to pick many up early. We gave up the notion of camping and found the last available rooms in Saratoga, WY.  We missed the free hot springs the town provides 24-7 to the public.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASaratoga Hot Springs

Day 53-55 miles

Pain 1Spectacular day! Just one hill to climb…

53-Walden, COWe started our day with a nutritious breakfast of wild game. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Our goal was to cross the Continental Divide for the 2nd time, but this time at a much lower elevation than Hoosier Pass. We will be crossing this many times on our trip. Continental Divide-3 The ride up the mountain initially followed roads lined with aspens and soon we were going through sections of the extensive Arapaho National Forest shown in red on the map. Arapaho National Forest This area consists of pristine rivers and more wild game running through lush valleys. As we rode higher, signs of pine beetle infestations became clear.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  At mile 33 we passed our first and only town for the day. Rand, established in 1881. We learned from experience to have Becky ready as a water resupply so the fact that the only store for the day was closed should not have been a problem. Unfortunately, Walt and June flew by Becky with a wave with the goal of getting fluids in Rand, with obvious consequences. At least there were other services in the area. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The 20 miles after Rand was an impressivee valley.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe pitched our tents in the community park in Waldon, CO, the birthplace of the world’s mosquito’s and where it is wise to ask when the sprinkler’s turn on.

Day 52-72 miles

Pain 1Walt and June are back!

52-Gramby, CO It seemed we gave them no mercy in terms of distance but the climb was minor and the scenery is still spectacular.  Our first 10 miles were on plush urban bike trails. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Most of the ride today was downhill following the Blue River, with one long detour around the Green Mountain Reservoir. The biggest change for Walt and June will be the narrow roads, fast traffic and the dearth of towns for supplies along the way. You really have to be self-sufficient in these parts.   OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  We ended our day following the headwaters of the Colorado River along the same historic Route 40 that many of us live near in Pennsylvania. This is one of the initial transcontinental federal highway systems, the one that was designed to run through the nation’s midsection. Although this river looked deceptively peaceful for most of the ride, with only one small stretch having visible whitewater, one of the towns we passed today (Kremmling) is the staging area for the wildest commercially run whitewater in the state-the 3 mile stretch of Gore Canyon. rt 40OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
We celebrated the end of a long day at the windy Stillwater USFS Campground on Lake Granby. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 51-Layover in Frisco, CO

We rented a beautiful duplex for 2 days in the mountains of Colorado. The day started with a 6 a.m. dog-moose encounter on the street outside the house. Everyone lounged at the house watching the U.S. Open and sitting in the hot tub. Tucker & Polaris took Don for a hike to an abandoned mining town for Father’s day.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 50-32 miles

faces-2Over the Top. This is todays route and elevation profile followed by the full summary of the 4-day climb. 

50-Frisco, COOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA On the drive back into town from camp we saw mule dear, elk and a coyote. It was a short day with a bit of a head wind. This was the steepest part of the whole climb ending at the Continental Divide. The corresponding long downhill took us through the ski town of Breckenridge and onto an urban bicycle trail for the last 10 miles into Frisco. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA IMGP4986OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA50 hoosier passOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Day 49-46 miles

faces-4 Still moving upward but not as steep…

49-Fairplay, CO We started the day with a dead battery. Luckily the cars in Guffey were not just posers. Keys were in all of them so Paul just hijacked one to get us on our way. fud-1639 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe got our first clear view of the Rockies unexpectedly. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA There were antelope and buffalo on our route. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We had lunch in the small town of Hartsel and      camped outside of Fairplay at a clean and lovely Forest Service Campground.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA