BOBBY AND THANE TACKLE THE TRANSAM Day 57 Grant Village to West Yellowstone

Day Fifty Seven Thane’s Blog: grab a cup of coffee

Wednesday June 26, 2013, 55 miles (89 km) – Total so far: 2,983 miles (4,800 km)

It should be obvious to everyone that I did not end up as bear breakfast or even a midnight snack for a grizzly last night. Maybe it was the fact that it rained most of the night and into the morning that saved my life. I’m not really sure about it all but I am sure of one thing. This journal entry will be a long one so go grab a cup of coffee and find a pillow for your computer chair.

7 miles into the journey today I drifted back. It was the smell of rain in the pine forest that we were cycling through. It was a slightly sweet smell that was crisp and clean. It was around 7:30 am and birds of various types were waking up with a smile on their face. Each one singing in their own voice. For a brief moment I was no longer cycling. I was fishing on Lake Huron with my father. Before my father’s age caught up to him both he and I would get up around 4 am almost every Saturday during the spring and summer fishing season. We would drive the 15 miles to launch the boat. Set the rigs for salmon and lake trout and try to earn bragging rights by catching our limit before most people were even out of bed. Some days my father and I would do just that. Some days we would simply guide our little vessel up and over the humps and reefs that often held these fish and only catch a few. It was the smell of the lake and the sun coming up in the east. It was the coffee in the thermos and the donuts in the bag. But in reality, it was so damn much more than that. It was beauty of sharing time with your dad. For me catching a fish or two or nine was a bonus really. Dad has gotten too old to take the pounding that the waves of Lake Huron can dish out but the memories live on. 7 miles into today ride that flood of beautiful memories of my father and I came rushing back and I started to just fucking cry. It was the good cry really. And I am thankful to have smelled the beauty of this morning. From that moment on I knew that whatever the road ahead threw at me I would just be stoked. Compared to the chaos of the first day cycling through Yellowstone I can honestly say I did enjoy todays miles a lot more. The roar of the traffic was nearly the same but much of the road had a shoulder that was wide enough to allow a cyclist to pick up their head and absorb the beauty around. Several miles into the day we began to see the famous hot sulfur springs and geysers brewing up from the center of the earth. The tourist trap village of Old Faithful is the home of the most famous of all of these geysers. I personally was more intrigued with the miles and miles of smaller ones that dotted our route today. They made for some really cool photographic images.

Even after the hot sulfur gasses faded away the remainder of West Yellowstone Park was filled with beauty. This area is billed as the fly fishing mecca of America and I saw proof of that today. There were rivers on either side of the road for most of our journey after Old Faithful. These rivers were the home of countless fly fishermen all wading into the softly flowing water. Just before we exited the park we came upon a little wooden sign marking the entrance to the state of Montana. This was really bitter sweet for me. On the one hand I was really excited to discover new cycling adventures in this state. On the other hand I was truly taken in by some of the things I saw in the state of Wyoming.

After this cycling journey is over and I am back home spreading the bullshit with my family and friends I will tell them these things about my travels through Wyoming. First and foremost was the incredible, never ending westerly wind. They started to blow around 9 am every morning and never truly died down totally. Often times they would build to 20-30 mph constantly. The one day as we travel along I-80 was the most dangerous cross wind I have ever cycled through. Locals said it was 40-45 with higher gusts.

Prong horn antelope greeted me on many occasions. Some days I would marvel at their numbers. The land in Eastern Wyoming was a barren sea of plains and looking for these beautiful animals helped take my mind off the constant headwinds for many days. When I was not searching for antelope I was hoping to find Elk or mule deer or moose. One glorious day, as we approached the climb up Towogotee Pass we even saw two Grizzly bear cubs. A sight that many of the locals have never had the opportunity to witness. The splendor and beauty of the Teton Mountain range truly took my breath away. I am absolutely sure that when I return home one of the images that I captured of the Tetons will hang in my photo studio. Of all the mountain ranges, the Tetons were the most awe inspiring to me. I will miss the wildlife sightings and the beauty of the mountains and Yellowstone. I thank God that he laid all this out for my bicycle and I to witness.

As I took the photograph of the “Welcome to Montana” sign I looked back on all of the beauty behind me and I marveled at what may lay ahead.

my first geyser sighting

my first geyser sighting

beautiful rock formation carved out by a geyser

beautiful rock formation carved out by a geyser

we are in the fly fishing mecca of america

we are in the fly fishing mecca of america

guess what state we just entered

guess what state we just entered

Day Fifty Seven Bobby’s Blog

Wednesday June 26, 2013, 55 miles (89 km) – Total so far: 2,983 miles (4,800 km)

Hi guys. Got an extra hour sleep this morning as it was raining and I hate to start out in the rain. We got under way around seven and stopped at the gas station in the park for coffee and a snack.

Then it was back out into the crazy world of cars and RV’s and busse on the narrow park roads. It was pretty crazy all the way to Old Faithful and then it kinda cleared out a little traffic wise that is from the East and we are going West so that was a big help.

Once we got to Madison the terrain got real pretty with the Madison River keeping us company almost all the way to the West gate and the town of West Yellowstone. Gotta be some good fishing here cause the river was full of fly fisherman. Tomorrow we will make our way to Ennis.

Three divides today

Three divides today

Now that's a tour bus.

Now that’s a tour bus.