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Day 09 (Mon 7/6/09)

Following Lewis & Clark 

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ROUTE: Stevensville to Wisdom, MT DISTANCE:  94 miles TOTAL CLIMBING:  5399 feet

Click here for Garmin ride data - Fixed!!

(This is cool if you like lots of data! It may take a few seconds to load but you can hit play and time compress our ride)

DAILY REPORT:  David, John, James and Skip. This morning when we got up it was thundering, lighting and raining. I did a quick check of the weather on line and looking at the local radar picture the storm would blow through in the next 30 minutes. Isn't it great to have technology at your finger tips??!! 

We had a nice breakfast compliments of Robby from the Stevensville Hotel. When we started at 0730 the sun was shining and the rain had mostly evaporated. there was a 30% chance of rain in Wisdom this afternoon.

So we headed south down the Bitterroot valley passing thru a number of small towns. Just beautiful country side. We eventually rejoined Hyw 93 in Hamilton. The city was fairly large in size by the fact it had a Safeway food store. We took a quick break and refilled our water bottles and continued on our way. We were meeting Skip in the town of Darby. 

Darby was about 35 miles down the road. It had a real cowboy feeling to the town. And had some great signs and store fronts. Skip was able to work his magic and talked w/ the owner of the Centrex gas station/food stop and got two cases of water donated to the  Riding4Hope Team. Thanks Centrex!!

It seemed too early for lunch so we decided to bike another 20 or so miles to Sula just before we were going for a big climb of the day thru Gibbon pass and Lost Trail pass both a little over 7,000 ft. 

Then it was time to climb, climb, climb.....Fortunately we had a great tail wind which helped. It was about 18 miles of climbing. Once we got to the top we were at the Montana and Idaho border so there was a rest/visitor station. John beat his brother to the top so there were some bragging rights going on. I was just trying to breath at 7,000 ft!! We took a much deserved rest and then climbed another couple hundred feet to the continental divide. Soooo for all intensive purposes it really is all down hill from here!!

There was just a spectacular valley we passed through on our last stretch to Wisdom. And as a plus we had a wind to our back again as broke out of the tree line so we flew down the road the entire way at 25+mph. As a cyclist it just doesn't get any better. The last 1/2 mile from town we started to feel a sprinkle or two of rain and showed up at the hotel just in time. As it turns out had we been there several hours earlier we would have witnessed a thundershower and hail. Sometimes it is just good to be lucky!!

Brenda of the Nez Perce Motel gave us a great rate so I wanted to personally thank her for helping out the Riding4Hope Team. Thanks much!! 

Tomorrow we have two semi major climbs but the challenging part of the day is that we have to cover 122 miles to get to VA City, MT (Who would have guessed there is city named that in MT?) That will be farther than any of us have ridden ever!! It equates to 8 hours of sitting on the saddle not to mention several hours of breaks. Yep it will be a long day!! Wish us well!!

Thanks for joining us.....ride safely!! 

The Riding4Hope Team

(David, John, James & Skip)







Skip - "I actually felt sorry for you guys climbing that hill!"

John - "James you were pretty slow coming up. We thought we were going to have to come down to get you."

James - "I was conserving my energy so I took it slow on purpose."

David - "I'm glad that Skip is here (ie not lost) so I can have a diet Coke w/Lime to celebrate!!"










When we left Darby we planned to have Skip meet us for lunch at Sula. After over an hour of biking we passed Sula (a gas station/food store) but didn't see Skip. We went anther mile and stopped at the Ranger's station. We gave Skip a call and he was along the road somewhere waiting for us.  It turns out we passed him south of Sula sitting along the road and we didn't see him and he was talking on the cell phone making hotel reservations and didn't see us. Go figure....our SAG support from Peninsula Subaru does have a tendency to blend in - NOT!!



Rest stop in Darby. Always nice to get off the bike for a bit.

The boys alternate every other day as to who is the Navigator for the day. James is studying the map making sure we know our next turn off.

Sassy Moose; Starbucks is no match here in Montana!

All smiles now that we are at the top of the pass at the Continental Divide!!

Skip trying to see what it would be like to be a cowboy and ride a horse - we didn't have the heart to tell him he was on a donkey. Now later on in the day he did help a ranch hand keep a dozen head of cattle from crossing the road by blocking them w/ the car and trailer. If I recall correctly he mentioned that he was ready to try out for next leading roll in City Slicker 3!!

The boys cleaning & lubing their bikes for the day before dinner. Much better to keep up with the preventive maintenance (PMS) then have a failure out on the road! 

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