North to South Tour - Day 26

07/20/2008 13:00:00 by Administrator

From: Cameron, Montana
To: West Yellowstone, Montana
Today: 65 miles - 1457 miles total

The Prince of Wales II provided both occupants with a restful night sleep. Two tent sites over from us, was Lavern! What a riot it has been bumping into him! Oatmeal and Oranges comprised our breakfast, we decamped, and were on the road at 8:00. We countinued this adventure by cyling down (south) Rte 287 through the Madison Valley (photo above). Unlike the rest of Montana, there are very little "for sale" signs in this rich area. 11,000 ft - snow dotted mountains were on our left side for the whole ride until we entered the Missouri flats. Our riding was pretty much up and down today, and we did end the day at 6500 ft. (we started off 5300 ft). After the Missouri flats, we were completely surrounded by mountains and trees. What a beautiful ride today!

We stopped by the Earthquake Lake visitor center and watched the presentation on how it was formed. Just like in Frank, Alberta, there was a giant earthquake (hence the name for the lake) in 1959 which triggered a landslide of epic proportions. The landslide (photo below) killed 28 people, and blocked the Madison river....forming Earthquake Lake. Again, Mother Nature will never be tamed.

Wild flowers, birds and forest helped us cycle up towards the junction of Rte 191 and Rte 287. We stopped at a fly fishing shop / cafe for lunch. The food was ok, but there were 6 people running the establishment, and 18 customers wanting lunch. It took us over an hour to have lunch. Our bill came to 12 if one divides 12 by 6 (forgetting the cost of the food, electric, heat, building, etc.) one must conclude the real money making endeavor is the fly fishing store. Since we are not in a rush (if we were...we would not be traveling by SeeMore express) it gave our legs plenty of recoup time. The rest of Rte 287 follows Hebgen Lake, and it was a real treat cycling along the shore of this large lake.

When Rte 191 merges with 287 (our last 8 miles into West Yellowstone) the traffic got heavy. Two miles from West Yellowstone, SeeMore's back tire found a wire (from a blown retread truck tire) and started to hissssssss. So our 13 dollar tire almost made it 70 miles into West Yellowstone! Again, we took everything off SeeMore and then patched the tube. This might sound like sour grapes...but I hope not. We are so blessed that the small town of Ennis Montana had a tire in the first place AND that this inexpensive tire carried a whole lot of weight for 70 miles! SeeMore is now sporting a new touring tire in the back (it is NOT yellow!).

Tonight we are in tourist town USA, West Yellowstone. We are living large in a hotel room. Again we have somewhat nostalgic accommodations, the kitchenette has a Norge refrigerator and the decor in the room is from the same era. There are some vacancies in town. We are sure that this town would be a lot busier, if the gas prices weren't so high. So we are hoping this trend of a smaller crowed follows us into Yellowstone. We been busy doing laundry, food shopping, and exploring West Yellowstone. We will be in the National Parks for a couple of days, so our log might have to wait a bit.