Day 21 – more TransAm riders show up

Day 21 – more TransAm riders show up

Day 21 6/7

Darby to Wisdom Mt

57 miles

Today took me over my first pass greater than 7,000 feet. That’s an impressive thing to me, since nothing on the East coast is over 7k.

The ride to the base of the pass was easy, relaxing almost. Stopped at the little market there and got an ice cream and a cookie. And then the first of the day’s TransAm race riders came through. The leading lady was there all smiles and several others all in the top 10. They looked good. And they kicked my ass over the pass.

The pass was long though not too steep. It just took awhile. And it was hot. Using getting to the top I decided to eat lunch and was blessed with the fact that the rest area was open and had cold running water. Because if it hadn’t had water I don’t think I would have had enough. I had severely underestimated my water use on that climb (it was hot). I chatted with a mom and her two adult kids and they graciously offered me a pair of sandwiches.

Things like that are the best. Seriously. Some of the most amazing people are ones I meet randomly on the side of the road or at rest stops. It moves your heart a little. So thank you!

Downhill out of the pass was nice, though breezy. I stopped at the Big Hole Battlefield Museum and learned some more about the Nez Perce’s long walk to “freedom.” We really did a number to the native Americans.

I had planned on spending the night in the free campsite in town. But it was covered in bugs. As soon as I stopped my bike I was literally covered in mosquitoes. All of the farms in the area are using surface irrigation and there’s no drainage. It leaves large standing bodies of water everywhere. So lots of skeeters. My arm was a different color. I ran into Eric who had a similar problem and had decided to say screw it and get a motel room. I paid the difference to go up to a 2 bed. The bugs were so bad though that the bar in town even had bug spray for use in the bar.

Went for some dinner and the saloon had a chicken fried steak special. As we were eating more TransAm riders came in. Most were paying the next 65 miles to Dillon, where I was planning on going the next day. One had a massive nosebleed all down his face and Jersey. Once he cleaned up he ate a little cobbler (peach) and pushed on. It amazes me how they do it. Most don’t sleep more than 4-5 hours a night and ride 200+ miles a day. They are carrying minimal equipment and as we talked I learned all of them had slept in a bathroom in the last 24 hours. They are tough.

I just wanted to take a moment to mention that the horizon here goes on forever until there’s a mountain. The sky is huge and never-ending. It’s quite inspiring.

6 Replies to “Day 21 – more TransAm riders show up”

  1. Please name the person in the photo.

    Yep, the sky goes on forever, wait till Kansas when there are no mountains. Glad you had water at the top and some one to give you lunch.

    1. Um which one. Max Lippe is the guy in the white shirt with blood on the sleeve. He’s a TransAm racer. The solo person on the bike is (I think) the leading lady racer. And the trio is two guys from Missoula on a ride and a Dutch TransAm tourer going west I talked to briefly

  2. “The old Lakota was Wise. He knew that the Man’s heart away from nature becomes hard;
    he knew that lack of respect for growing living things soon led to
    lack of respect for humans too.”
    Chief Luther Standing Bear

  3. But they are close…..The highest peaks east of the Mississippi all reside in the Blue Ridge province of the Southern Appalachians, most notably in the Black and Great Smoky mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee. The top 10 are: (1) 6,684-foot Mount Mitchell, (2) 6,647-foot Mount Craig, (3) 6,643-foot Clingman’s Dome, (4) 6,621-foot Mount Guyot, (5) 6,611-foot Balsam Cone, (6) 6,593-foot Mount LeConte, (7) 6,571-foot Mount Gibbes, (8) 6,475-foot Potato Hill, (9) 6,417-foot Mount Chapman, and (10) 6,410-foot Richland Balsam. Nothing like the Rockies but still a challenge.

  4. Will you be doing any of these? This is list of lower 48 only. Western Part of U.S.
    BIG difference. altitude sickness heights..Not for me…..Have fun be safe!!

    Mount Whitney in the Sierra Mountains of California rises 14,494 feet above sea level.
    Mount Elbert in the Colorado Rocky Mountains reaches 14,433 feet tall.
    Mount Massive, also in Colorado, rises 14,421 feet tall.
    Mount Harvard of Colorado stands 14,420 feet tall.

    Mount Williamson in California stands 14,375 feet tall.
    Blanca Peak in the Colorado Rocky Mountains stands 14,345 feet tall.
    La Plata Peak in Colorado rises 14,336 feet tall.
    Uncompaghre Peak in Colorado stands 14,309 feet above sea level.
    Crestone Peak in Colorado rises 14,294 feet.
    Mount Rainier in Washington is 14,410 feet tall.

    1. I have to check for sure which ones I go over. My biggest pass/peak will be almost 12k I believe in Colorado. Ill pull my maps out from the bottom of the pack in a big town and see for sure what it’s named though.

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