It wasn't as cold as it was yesterday morning, which was nice. Still cold hands while packing up, but no ice in the water. We left about 9:30. We had a big climb today. A steep 5.5 miles up to just below 7000 ft. (We started at about 3500). Because I wasn't carrying the spare tire anymore, I had better handling on the front. Also, the tires were more inflated. For whatever reason, I was able to keep up with the guys better (okay, maybe keep up is a little generous--they just didn't get so far ahead of me).
A nice double track before the big climb. We had a short section of singletrack that I walked most of. There was a super steep short section that Connor had to walk (and help me push MC up), and Derik made it up most of it, but also had to walk. It was the first time we've had to walk since Canada.
When we reached the beginning of the 5.5 mile climb, I turned my music on. As we got higher, the views got better and better.
Those mountains are the border of the Bob Marshall Wilderness (Swan Mountains).
I caught up to the guys at a 4 way intersection. We would be taking the singletrack trail. First, we had some lunch while admiring this view.
Again, the Mission Mountains.
We were going up the trail behind Derik and Connor.
This was the singletrack. It wasn't too bad...at first. Then there was this spot.
I chickened out, and walked along this precipice of death.
I actually rode most of the singletrack. It was scary as hell at times. We finally reached the top of the climbing for today.
We weren't going up that, we were turning right, and going down this.
This is the basin below Mt. Richmond that we had ridden around.
The down had equally scary as hell moments (for me anyway, the guys thought it was fun).
As we got lower, it did get easier. The only thing I had to watch out for was the drainage thingies. I hit one a little fast, and it made my side hurt.
Then the singletrack was done, but the descent continued on a gravel road. Now, that was fun! We ended up on more gravel all the way to Hwy 83 (this is about the 3rd time we've ended up on 83). Actually, the reason we came out to the highway, was to go into Seeley Lake. We needed to get groceries. First we stopped at a laundromat/showers, but even though we've not showered since Whitefish, nor done laundry, we decided we didn't need to do either. I'd have to say that's a first for me. I must really be into the GDMBR frame of mind (I don't need no stinkin' shower, I stink enough all on my own!), to turn down a shower opportunity!
We got our groceries, then stopped at the Moose River Bar and Grill for dinner. After that, we got ice cream at another place. I was so full, I thought I was going to hurl! On a good note though, my side seems to be feeling much better, even though I've not taken any ibuprofen since this morning!
Oh, also while in Seeley Lake, I called the bike shop in Helena, and had them order me a new spare tire. Of course they have to overnight it as it is Friday, and we will be in Helena on Monday and Tuesday (another day off).