Day 35: July 18: Eureka to Libby, MT: 72 miles

Traveling with a group of 5 is difficult. Each day, one rider is having a rough day. Each day, a different bike has troubles. Each day, the conditions are not ideal for one of the bikes or riders. Each day, a different rider is ill. What are the odds that all of that will be perfect for all 5 riders in one day? Not great. Today I was having my best day of the trip, Katie was having one of her worst.

It was 75F when we left early today, hoping to beat the heat. It was nearly 100 by the time we finished the day, with katie down to a crawl. This is how it works in a group....

We left Eureka, and headed to the hardware store to find parts for TJs bike, and a decent air compressor for our low tires. Our 4 pumps are all starting to fail; we only have one that still works great.

Katie ant TJ set our goal for 70 miles today, a large goal, especially in the hilly terrain of the west, and in the heat wave. There was only 1 air conditioned escape today, and that was a cafe at about 40 miles. In the end, the heat and hills wore on Katie, and she started to crawl.

We crossed the 1500 mile mark today. On our last tour of this size, we were 250 miles further at this point. This has really been a challenge.

The road today was one of the nicest of the trip. Highway 37 from Eureka to Libby has low traffic and an excellent cycling shoulder almost the entire way. The Libby dam is neat to see.

We climbed over 2700 feet today, which I think is what wiped Katie out. Funny, she usually dominates in the climbs, or heat, but I guess the combination is hard on her.

These photos sum up the day; 50 miles going past this awesome lake.

So we found a nice hotel in Libby called the Caboose. The only problem, they have these dumb decorative covers over the AC units.....meaning they can't possibly cool the room. The guy at the front desk doesn't understand basic thermodynamics, and so we are going to bake. Nobody in this state has decent AC, because their summer is like 3 days long. Oh well. I guess we should have camped.

72 miles (1534 total)


Awesome pics!!!

but where is Roger's tall & short orange flags?

Rogers flags

Roger has lost 2 flags this trip. Do not worry, he still flies the packer flag with pride. He started with 3, and is down to 1...and always rides with a partner. I think it might be a blessing with the cascades coming. I am going to try and get the group to send a bit of stuff home.......any weight we can cut before the cascades will help. We have some big climbs coming..... I am surprised more bikers don't have flags....we have not met another yet. The motorists comment how they can't miss our group from a long way away.