Thursday, August 28, 2014

Catching up

A lot has happened since Great Falls. I've been neglecting the blog, sorry about that. Now some pictures.

We finally made it up to the Adventure Cycling Northern Tier route. Right here.
Pretty boring looking intersection but it made me happy.

Yep, it's a Fort.

This is about where the mosquitoes started getting bad. We rolled into the campsite right at dusk, hot and sweaty from the days ride. My blue socks pulled up to my knees. I had such a high concentration of skeeters on my legs my socks turned black.
 I have never experienced a swarm of mosquitoes like the ones in Montana.

Camping out in the town park. 

On the road into Williston. Here's some things the locals said about Williston MT

"It's the wild west up there"
"My brother worked up there for two months, 12 people went missing. It's hell"
"Don't walk alone, doesn't matter if you're a guy or gal. They'll rape ya"
" You guys together? Cuz it's men to women 87 to 1. Don't freak out if she gets hit on"

We found a couple trucker hats on the side of the road. Dressed Heather up in baggy men's clothing and road into Williston.


When in Rome do as the Romans. 

The oil fields of North Dakota are busy. They currently have a shortage of truck drivers. (I was having lunch and was just about offered a job driving truck) Which also means they have an abundance of bad truck drivers. Some even operate without a CDL since most of the driving is on private land.

It became very clear that riding in North Dakota would be extremely unsafe, so we hopped on the Amtrak and headed for Fargo ND. 

Don't mind if I do.

Fargo ND is bike friendly and easy to navigate. I was delighted to see bike lanes again. 

With high spirits we set forth into Minnesota.

Green grass, lakes, this is a good start. Liking this state so far.

Caution: 103 miles of well maintained bike path ahead.

The lake Wobegon Regional trail. Where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.

We stopped in Ashby to use the restroom. Got to talking with some of the residents. They set us up with a place to camp, showers and drinks. I'm pretty sure this is the nicest most friendly town in America.

This is Scott, he made us breakfast in the morning. 

I love this trail!

It does have an occasional speed bump.







Seems about right.

Pulling tricks near the end of the trail.

Shortly after this picture was taken Heather realized she had lost her sleeping bag. Doh!

Minneapolis, thinking about changing professions. Window washer seems like a fun job.

Minnesota is a wonderful state. The people are friendly, plenty of places to camp, fresh food is easy to come by and there are tons of cyclists. 

Monday, August 4, 2014

The rolling hills

It took us a few days but We made it to Great Falls!

The trip over the pass was a little tricky. There was a huge section of dirt and gravel road due to construction. 
Blue Skies and a lot of dirt. Dirt for miles.

 I was so happy to see this sign. So very happy.


Shortly after this was taken we decided to pitch a tent and wait out the storm. That's a nice way of saying "Sleep in a ditch on the side of the road." 


It's nice to look back on your progress. 


We found this nice old restaurant. This must have been a popular stop for people to eat and fill up their water bottles. 




Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Layover in Missoula

We rolled into Missoula MT several days ago and have had the pleasure to ride and explore the city. The downtown area of Missoula is friendly and has a small town feel. It's not uncommon to see people walking and biking all over the downtown area. Separate bike paths line the sidewalks putting cyclists out of the door zone. The City did a great job of creating a bike route system downtown.

---Start Rant---
We are not staying downtown.

The rest of the city's bike system is a bit sketchy. Missoula sits on several highways, portions of the large roads have been converted into bike lanes. 
The bike lanes appear and disappear without warning. Pedestrian crosswalks and traffic signals are ill conceived and downright dangerous.

No one walks outside of downtown.
---End Rant---



No trip to Missoula is complete without visiting the Adventure Cycling Headquarters.
We bumped into Terry Richard from Oregon Live there and he wrote up an article on us!

We weighed in our bikes. I really try not to think about weight or miles. 
125 pounds! I dropped about 15lbs that day. 


We'll be hanging around Missoula another day and then it's onto Great Falls.






Friday, July 25, 2014

Montana!

Making our way. It's getting cold compared to what we've been through so far. I'll be wearing long johns tonight.


Ok there Idaho

Despite the lack of bike paths and shoulders Idaho has won me over. 

Over the past couple days riding through the Rockies of Idaho I've grown to really like this place. 

Honestly it's scary riding a bike on the Lewis and Clark trail. It's filled with massive trucks, hill billies and white crosses marking the victims of the road. But if you can get past all that you'll find this place. Bob Weir Hot Springs.

That's Homeless Bruce, he's enjoying this natural jacuzzi on the river. This pool also contained a trucker wearing nothing but a camo hat (Not pictured)
There's another small jacuzzi . Perfect for soak the legs in.

Finding potable water out here is difficult.  Fortunately I brought a water filter along although the river water may be affecting my brain.






Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bring on the Trees

Goodbye desert! 
We've been traveling along the Lewis and Clark trail. Things have been cooling down. We are on our way into the Rockies. 

No signal for the past few days, we don't expect cell signal until we reach Montana. AT&T hates Idaho. 

Some pictures along the way.

 
Lewiston ID is known for its SUC (Stand Up Canoeing)

Such definition!

Our oatmeal got an upgrade. (Blackberry season)

This thing, and dam. Big ol dam.

More of that thing

Camping in the city park is encouraged in small town America.



The road between Orofino and Kamiah ID  is terrible. There is no shoulder on either side. Cliffs and cement barriers going west. Rock faces and ditches going east. I wouldn't suggest taking this route if you can avoid it. 



Sunday, July 20, 2014

Idaho ho!


Top hats are in. 

Doesn't look like a Summit to me. 


After a long 75mile day in the sun We made it to Idaho. Camped out in Hells Gate state park, and I have to say that Oregon State Parks are the best. 

Hells Gate is a beautiful state park that's easily accessible by the hike and bike trail that runs along the Snake River. They don't have hiker biker campsites at the park but they do have a fair amount of RV sites. 

Hells Gate is probably best visited in their off season.