Kathy’s Montana Adventure, Day 5ish

Well, it has been a bit crazy. After Gardiner we were told we wouldn’t have cell service for two days. We had an off day yesterday to Yellowstone on school buses. I took the five hour tour. We went to the geysers at Norris and then to the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone. It was very smoky there and so I didn’t take many photos. We did see bison along the road and had fun on the way to Pilot Creek. Pilot Creek is 10 miles from anywhere. It is in the middle of the Shoshone Forest. We were told to conserve on water as they had to bring in everything for us since there in no electricity or water anywhere near. It was actually nice but we are in big time bear country so no hiking or biking in groups of four. Rained for two hours and got pretty cold so it wasn’t fun packing this morning with everything wet.

Travel plans have changed for the week as there is a fire at Beartooth Pass (our last day) and the have closed the road. So today we did 67 miles to Cody as planned. We had several smaller four mile climbs but then a 2,000 foot gain over eight miles over Chief Joseph or Dead Indian pass. I cranked for an hour and a half and took some great photos of our switchbacks. I was so glad to see the top and lunch. Then I did a coast down the mountain on the backside where I did not touch my pedals for more than a half mile for 10 miles. It was awesome. I definitely broke a few speed laws as we topped out at over 40 mph at some points. Then it got hot as I pedaled the next seven miles to the water stop. The last 11 into Cody were mostly down hill with a bit of a cross headwind. But we are here and were told last night that we would be doing an out and back alternate ride Friday and staying in Cody two nights. We will ride to Red Lodge on Saturday instead of tomorrow and have to miss the 34 mile climb up Beartooth Pass. Sounds like the fire crew has taken over our area in Red Lodge so it may be interesting to see how we get our cars on Saturday.

Well I am off to dinner. Today was fun, amazing view, but hard on my old body. Might try to hit the laundry mat later to get all that clean for a change.

This is one of the fires burning north of us. We road through smoke from it today and were within miles of the base command.

This is one of the fires burning north of us. We road through smoke from it today and were within miles of the base command.

Kathy’s Montana Adventure, Days 2 & 3

Since the moderator – ahem, me – has been at off-site meetings for a couple days, we’re just now catching up with our teammate as she treks across the great state of Montana. Here are Kathy’s updates on days 2 and 3 of her adventure…

Day 2

The day started with an absolutely beautiful climb at mile 7 and did not end until mile 10. As cold as the day started, we warmed up in a hurry. Of course once we climb we get to descend and since that was at 7-percent grade we went down pretty fast… like 45+ miles per hour.

We rode along wheat fields for part of the morning and then rode in the valley after our second break. We had lunch in Three Forks which is where three rivers come together to form the headwaters of the Missouri River. Final 11 miles of the day was along the interstate so not great. Shower is done and I feel human again. It is very hot by 11 and it stays hot til the sun goes down.

A typical camp shot.

A typical camp shot.

 

Day 3

Today was a short day, mileage-wise, but tough headwinds prevailed as we rode through a canyon.

Scenery was fantastic but it got pretty smokey. We are very close to fires. We saw choppers with their water bags. It got better the closer we got to Gardiner.

Saw a yak, some bison and eagles today. We are just one mile from the entrance to Yellowstone. Tomorrow is a non-ride day so we’ll be on bus tours.

Hot again today and we are camped on a football field so there isn’t much shade in site. Later. I need to find something non-water to drink as I am watered out.

Kathy’s Montana Adventure, Day 1

Started out cool in the morning, but by our first water stop it was time to shed the coat. By the next stop I got rid of my arm warmers and it just got hotter as the day went on. In the morning we road along the Madison river and the Hergen lake. The views were spectacular. A little hill climbing but not to bad. Lunch was alongside the Madison River and we saw a fly fisherman catch a trout and all cheered for him.

The last 35 miles were fairly flat but we had a bit of a cross wind which wore on you. Also, a fairly busy road with a speed limit of 75 and even though the shoulder was pretty good they sometimes didn’t give you much room. You also have to force yourself to drink or you will get dehydrated.

I got to Ennis around one as I forgot to check my watch and my speedometer is not working. Our camp is at a subdivision that never came to fruition. It is like a field of rocks and I used a rock to put in my tent stakes. No shade except where they put up our dining area. Hope it cools down as the sun goes down.

A Message from Teammate Kathy…

Our teammate, Kathy, is heading out to bike the great state of Montana and will be sending daily comments for the blog. Stay tuned and stay updated!

A note from Kathy as she starts her journey…

I am sitting on the bus waiting to head to West Yellowstone. Amazingly enough, I am sitting with a group of people from Iowa or ISU graduates. Several also did the Utah ride that I did, but a different year. This is looking to be a pretty good sized ride. Probably a good thing because I heard at breakfast this morning that there have been four bear attacks in the north Yellowstone area.

As we roll out I look off to my left and see the mountain we will ride on the last day…crazy…and a little intimidating. Oh well. I will worry about that on day seven.

Gal behind me is from Wisconsin and got talked into this ride. She is meeting friends from another state. Parked next to a gal from Peoria, Illinois, so there are a fair number of women on the ride. Should be a great week. Weather is sunny and warm today, not as cold as I thought it would be this morning.

Mount Rushomore

Off to a Chilly Start

We had our first ride of the year last weekend, the Annual Des Moines Mayors Ride for Trails. Unfortunately, the temperature when we stepped out of the car was mid-30’s, a telling tale of what was to come. Nonetheless, bundled up and packed with Kleenex, we hit the trails!

The ride was a 25-miler, although Bear clocked 26.1 miles. Kathy, Sarah, Lori and Bear all made the trek. Our fellow teammate and biker Milan was planning on joining us, but he was stuck in Ohio where it was a balmy 60 degrees! We were jealous.

This ride is always a great start to a bike year: it’s packed with cycling enthusiasts, it provides a great tour of Des Moines neighborhoods and bike trails, and the lunch provided afterward is always worth the miles!

What’s up next? Only time will tell…

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Lori is bundled up and ready to ride!

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If you work quick, you can get a picture of Kathy when she’s not looking.

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But if you’re not quick, Kathy puts up her helmet shield in a hurry!

Hello 2013!

It’s nearly 40 degrees today… spring is back! And so is Team Gotta Keep on Moving! We’ve got our first ride on the books, the Des Moines Mayors Ride on Saturday, April 20. Ready or not, here we come.

This year the team is looking at several one day rides and possibly part of RAGBRAI, although that is yet to be determined. Team member Kathy is heading west for a late summer biking adventure, more on that to come later. And, there’s a North Dakota possibility in there? Oh, the possibilities!

Stay tuned! The team is back and we’re going to be making some great two-wheel memories in 2013!

What Happened This Summer?

As you may have noticed, we haven’t had any posts lately. Why? Because this year, the team just didn’t make RAGBRAI. Busy schedules and commitments kept the team from taking place in Iowa’s greatest ride. But that doesn’t mean we haven’t been pedaling, and that doesn’t mean our bike year is over. Look for things to come…