So I’ve got a week’s backlog of posts to make… I’m splitting them up into a couple ones!
In order to make things a little bit more interesting, I will be compiling a personal soundtrack of this trip. The proper soundtrack to read this blog post to is Brant Bjork’s “Automatic Fantastic”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZMJBQWNQSA
It’s from the Jalamanta album. Lazy music for lazy souls!
OK, here we go.
I had a couple of lazy days the past few days. “Lazy” means doing about 70 or 80 kilometers and climbing about 800 to 1000 meters with the fully loaded bike. That didn’t sound lazy back home, but it sure feels that way right now. I must be getting into shape. It also depends on the terrain, as I would find out later…
The other dutch guys are getting way ahead of me. I could do 120k each day, but to me, that wouldn’t be fun. Being tired all the time, worrying about food, getting knee problems… this IS a holiday, you know. So when I have the opportunity, I just sit back and relax. And I talk to people, a lot. Like Michael Barry, a cyclist who bought me lunch at the Echo Lake Lodge. Or Charles Fockaert, a Montanan resident from Belgian descent. I shared a couple of beers with him over in Bigfork, talking about his planned trip to Europe.
I’ve met a couple, Jacob and Emma, who are riding the Great Divide with her parents, Michael and Margaret. Both are in their late sixties and riding the Great Divide up until Butte! How awesome is that? Usually during the day I ride alone, at my own speed, and in the evenings we meet up. I met them in Whitefish (on my rest day) and I rode with them a couple of days. We said goodbyes in Seeley Lake. They’re really nice people and I’m definitely going to send them some dutch liquorice when I’m home!
So the days have been easy riding but we’ve been in camping on more “obscure” sites, such as Cedar Creek campground. I’ve been plenty practicing hanging my food in the tree and living without a shower!
At Holland Lake I met the Hall family and they offered me to stay at their place a couple of miles from Helena. Such a sweet offer! And only because they made a wrong turn they saw me. Talk about serendipity.
I had my first “mechanical” failure. Broke a tent peg while ramming it into the ground… too bad!
Here are some pictures. As usual, the “need to know” bit about distances and campgrounds is below them. Keep in mind that a portion of the distance is just riding around looking for shops, or for the campground if it’s off-route. I haven’t made a single wrong turn! … yet
Some bad weather brewing right outside of Whitefish.