Sunday, September 29, 2013

Beartooth Pass, Red Lodge MT, and back to Yellowstone

It's still Tuesday, August 20, 2013 and we're riding up through Beartooth Pass.

SHEEEEPP!!!  Ok, goats.

The pass is at 10,947'.  Oh yeah, it's WAY up there.  And the views are spectacular!!  

What a great road too.  Now we head down the other side.

Jimmy caught a couple of pics of me descending from the pass.

Look at this rock fall area.  That's the road up there.  See it?  Rocks, please don't fall while I'm riding beneath you!!

There were fires burning all over the place.  There was the big one in Yosemite but also a bunch in Yellowstone and vicinity.  As we started to approach Red Lodge MT, we came across this fire that had just started.  It was near some houses.  I hope they all made it through ok.

The town is just ahead of us.  After we got through, they were closing down the road.  I'm glad we didn't have to go back the way we came. 

We stopped in Red Lodge for some lunch at the Red Lodge Cafe.   

Lunch was yummy and we were ready for it! 

After lunch, we continued on out of Red Lodge east to Belfry, then south on down to Cody WY.  In Cody, we stopped at the Sierra Trading Post Outlet.  I didn't think the prices were very "outlet-y" but it was still fun to look around.  

After that we headed back to Yellowstone.  The route we were going to take was closed due to fires but the alternate was just fine.  We rode by the area of Yellowstone with all the thermal features.  We didn't stop because it was getting late but I went back another day and spent some time.  (Stay tuned for that episode coming up!)

Pat got a pic of the Smith Mine Disaster site as we rode by.  An explosion ripped through the mine.  Of the 77 men working that day, only 3 got out alive, and one rescue worker died soon afterward.  All the buildings and everything are still there but it's a ghost town.

More smoke from fires on the way back.  This is looking over Yellowstone Lake.

This day we rode 385 miles; 9 hours and 9 mins of riding.  It was a great day!!

Next up...  paddling the Madison River.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Onward to Yellowstone National Park

Sunday, August 18, 2013

This day I drove from the Denver area up to West Yellowstone, Montana.  I was meeting my friends Jimmy and Lois and their friends Pat and Lonnie.  

I passed fields of wind turbines.  The size of these things is amazing.  

(The following photos were taken with my cell phone.)

OOoo, big mountains in the background. 

OOooo, Grand Teton ahead.

Unfortunately, there were fires burning and it was too smokey to take pictures.  These were the only ones I got.  :(

I clipped the edge of Idaho and saw the amazing hay fields there.  It was beautiful.

Well, it was a long day of driving.  Twelve hours and I finally arrived at the Rainbow Point campground.  It was a nice Forest Service campground.  The sites had electric but no water.  That was fine.  There was a water spigot nearby and we were able to fill tanks as needed.  Jimmy & Lois and Pat & Lonnie had their rv's; I was tent camping.  I left my rv at home due to the cost of fuel.  But tent camping long term isn't really for me any more.  My old knees don't like getting down on the ground to get in and out of a tent.  Ugh.

I set up my tent and saved the rest of the setup for the next day.

Monday, August 19, 2013

I needed to set up the rest of my stuff which meant unloading everything off the trailer and out of the truck.  Plus I was just exhausted from that drive so a day to rest was in order.

Pat and Lois made an awesome breakfast.  Throughout the rest of the trip, they would make fabulous meals for breakfast and dinner.  Wow, did we eat well!!  Since I didn't have anything for storing food, I was grateful for their taking care of that for me.  

Jimmy, Lois, and Lonnie went for a dualsport ride.  Later on, Pat and I took the truck and went into town for supplies.  Then we went exploring near the campground.  

We saw this herd of horses running across the field to the corner but only got the end of the run.

We went to look at this lake near the campground - Hebgen Lake.  There was a sign for Horse Butte Lookout so we decided to check it out.  We were glad we did!!  It was beautiful although a bit hazy due to wildfires in Yellowstone.  That's a big plume of smoke in the background.

There were butterflies everywhere!  

Just beautiful.

It was really stunningly beautiful up there.  

Then it was back to camp for the rest of the day.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

This day we took a street bike ride.  Sort of a scoping ride.  Plus Jimmy wanted to ride over Beartooth Pass.  
We rode through Yellowstone.  This was my first time through the park.

Jimmy and Lois

Pat and Lonnie


Madison River

Yellowstone scenery.

A steam vent!

Wide open spaces.

We got stopped by these SHEEEEEEEPP!!! as they scooted down the hill into the road.

Dead trees from the 1988 fire.

It was amazing that a lot of them were still standing after all these years.  And the ones that fell over are still laying there.  I guess they don't have the decomposers there like we do here!  

Wagon train!!  Ok, maybe not a "train".  Cowboys!!  Ok, maybe not "cowboys" but more like "tourists".  Whatever.


Now we're getting on toward Beartooth Pass.  SNOW!!

Oh wait!!  Those really are sheep!!!

To be continued...