June 26th Statistics – Sandpoint, ID to Libby, MT:
- Today’s Biking Distance – 95.7 miles
- Today’s Average Speed – 13.4 mph
- Today Ascent – 2,958 feet
- Today Descent – 3,034 feet
- Today’s Ending Elevation – 2,085 feet
- Total Trip Biking Days – 8
- Total Trip Biking Distance – 572.7 miles
- Total Trip Average Biking Distance/Day – 71.6 miles
- Total Trip Ascent – 28,765 feet
Today I set two personal records for the trip so far: 1) highest miles biked in a single day – 95.7 miles and 2) most hours biking in the rain in a single day – 7.5 hours. It started raining within minutes of leaving our hotel in Sandpoint and became a downpour by mile 5. At mile 10 the weather changed to rain/drizzle for the remainder of the 96 miles and 7.5 hours. As a result you may notice that there are no pictures posted for today.
I can brag that I was one of only 3 bikers out of 9 (including our tour leaders) to bike the entire 96 mile route today. Two biking guests gave up after 10 miles and got in the van, while one rode another 10 miles before throwing in the towel (actually getting the towel to dry off). The Classic Adventure threesome decided not to confront the weather on a bike today and traveled by van today, but were waiting for me numerous times on the route with water and snacks.
I was described by some of my friends and traveling companions as a bumblebee with my black and yellow bike, yellow and black bike wear, yellow bike seat and pedals, yellow rain cover for my black helmet, black and yellow rain jacket, black rain pants, and yellow shoe botties. On a day like today when I kept reasonably dry, warm, and visible to the traffic, I proudly claim the title Bumblebee Biker.
Northwest Montana – I didn’t get to enjoy my first views of Montana (mile 35) due to limited visibility, looking down to keep water out of my eyes, and due to Montana law, keeping the bike on the shoulder of the road or on the white line if there is no shoulder (last year the Montana State Police stopped two members of the tour group for riding in the road). However, the Montana that I was able to capture in those rare glimpses during the day were magnificent and even more stunning than the Cascades in many ways – not the snow covered mountains of the Cascades, but numerous mountains valleys of green with flowing rivers and streams of beauty. I am disappointed that I was unable to photograph the scenes.
It appears we may have a day without rain tomorrow – you can only hope.
P.S. My appreciation of Gore-Tex is magnitudes greater than it was a week ago.