Mileage:  134 miles

Elevation Change:  5456 feet

Weather:  cloudy and cooler

Morale:  great!

Incidents: 70 km/hr descent, 2 flat tires

Daily Summary:

As you can see on our map above, our 40 miles of tortuous headwinds into Missoula yesterday were paid back today by miles and miles of glorious tailwinds.  We did have some headwinds before lunch, and then a steep climb which didn’t feel great on a full stomach after lunch, but then the descent was absolutely fabulous, and we reached speeds of 70 kilometers per hour.  At one point early this morning a whole gang of us took a wrong turn and ended up at a dead end.  We had to cross the railroad tracks (just as a train was coming!) and then climb over a barb wire fence to get back on the right track.  Other than that, we just pedaled along enjoying the scenery.  Most of the day was really beautiful, though Anaconda and Butte don’t rank among Montana’s pretty towns.  We made it through almost the entire day with no flats, but then had two in the last ten miles.  I am not happy with the new Continental Gatorskins tires we are using.  Five flats in two days (and two before that) have been frustrating.  I’m thinking about changing them all out soon.  We are feeling pretty good, despite our huge mileage of the past two days.  Tomorrow we “only” go 101, and the next day is only 80, so we are starting to think that we can do this. 


Below you see Ray just after climbing the fence before the oncoming train.  Then Ray leading the pack along a lake.  Finally some typical scenery for the day.  They must have had a  bike race along that road as someone had painted “allez” on the pavement going the other way.