Friday, August 7, 2009

Day 9 - Missoula,MT to Junction of Rtes 200 & 141, MT - 65 miles

Crazy storm, but it sure was cool before it hit.

I got a bit of a late start today due partly to the morning rain and partly to the days forecast – there were more storms on the way and I wasn’t exactly excited to get out there and ride into them. Had I not just taken a rest day, I probably would’ve stayed cozy in my sleeping bag for another couple hours.

Finally organized, I made my way through the city, onto route 200 and into the Montana wilderness. My goals for the day were simple – ride until the inevitable rain came and then hunker down for the afternoon / evening. Preparing for the inevitable, I was in constant “shelter lookout mode” which basically means, the shit is going to hit the fan at any moment and I always want to know the best escape route when the skies open up. With ever darkening skies, I was elated to see a giant fiberglass cow signifying civilization - in the form of Stoney’s Kwik Mart. Not five minutes passed in this asylum of rolling hot dogs and fountain drinks, when reports of inches of hail falling a couple miles back started to get relayed by shaken drivers. Pheww! – that would have sucked.

While the storm was passing through (or at least I hoped it would be passing), I got to have a cup of coffee with Steve…. For all of you that think I’m a bit nuts, meet Steve Fugate – he’s WALKING across the US with a simple message “Love Life”. He lost two children to suicide and is now spreading his cherish life message one step at a time. Interesting guy.

After deciding to get back out and tempt the Gods, Steve and I parted ways and I rode on hoping to make it another 10 miles or so before another washout. Fortunately that never happened and I made it a good ways up the road before deciding to camp under a hay shelter of farmer Todd. While Todd’s family was down in the city for his son’s birthday, he kindly regaled me with stories of farming, living in MT and of course, the local grizzly bears. Nice stories to hear before heading outside to my fabric shelter for the evening!

No comments: