Tuesday, June 29, 2010

East Glacier to West Glacier - back on the bike - day 34

Total miles today was 60 - just getting daylight when we started out at 5:00AM

Today is the day of the big challenge as we will summit the Rockies via Mariah Pass on highway 2 towards West Glacier. We headed out shortly before daylight and immediately started a 12 mile long but gradual climb to the summit at approx. 5216 feet. Once at the top we stopped and took pictures but unfortunately it was so early in the day that we couldn't find anyone to take a picture of the two of us together. We reached the summit about 6:30AM. After taking a few pictures and congratulating each other with a hug and high five we put on our rain gear to break the cold wind of the high altitude on our 13 mile ride down the mountain. We had a total of 57 miles to bike to get to West Glacier and the views were incredible with the Flathead river running along side highway 2 and numerous waterfalls along the way. After our 13 miles descent we took off our rain gear because it was warming up quickly.

One of the waysides that we stopped at on the way down the mountain was called "Goat Lick". This is an area where the mountain goats come down to lick mineral off the rocks along the banks of the Flathead River. We saw about a dozen mountain goats with their kids along the river.

With our early start this morning we ended up completing our 57 miles by 10:00AM and stopped and ate breakfast at West Glacier and had the rest of the day to relax. After checking into the hotel we met 4 bikers that were biking from Anacortes to the east coast. They sat with us by our hotel and we discussed biking stories for a couple of hours. Very enjoyable way to spend part of the afternoon. One of the guys adjusted our rear brake for us - thank you so much as we were having trouble with the brake since the rear wheel was rebuilt last Saturday.

We had dinner and then sat in front of the hotel and enjoyed the beautiful bug free surroundings. One of the gals that worked at the hotel came out and sat and visited with us.

We are planning on leaving at 5:00am again tomorrow to avoid the traffic and to get into Whitefish before the bike shop opens at 9:00 because we need to get new bearings in our front tire. We should have a brand new bike by the time we get done with this trip.

Life is fantastic!

Happy Trails!

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