Sunday, July 1, 2012

Harlowton & Billings

Day 12

Up at 5:30 in the morning to find freshly soaked grass around some of the tents in the patio area of the Townsend High School that we were staying at.    The area where my tent was didn't have a sprinkler, but a few others got an accidental rain test, as the sprinklers came on several times during the night.   ( Note to self:  Always check the ground for sprinkler heads )

We breakfasted at the MINT on Broadway in Townsend.   Our cue sheet plainly said to make sure we were on Hwy 12 going out of town, and about 6 or 7 of us promptly left the diner and headed the wrong way.   Gene in "Blue Thunder" corralled us about 1 1/2 miles out of town, so we got 3 bonus miles to add to what is going to be a 99 mile day.

Beautiful scenery all the way.   We started up a hill, then into a canyon called Deep Creek with a wonderful little creek running along the road.   When we exited the canyon, we were up on high plateau.

Deep Creek as it opened up

After exiting Deep Creek

Looking back towards Deep Creek and Helena National Forest

Basin & Range

Belt Mountains

Along the road to White Sulphur Springs

Horses !

Pretty stream right before the construction detour

Checkout the heavy up on the hill widening this road !
This was an awesome day for a bicycle ride.   Climbed empty roads, descended at 40 mph ( on a bicycle ! ) for a few miles, saw lots of horses, mountains with snow melting on them, lunch at White Sulphur Springs, and after lunch some of the fastest extended riding that I have ever done !    Sarah and I rolled along never going under 20 mph for miles and miles after the construction delay.   We got into Harlowton, found an ice cream place and I had an iced tea and a strawberry shake.   Awesome !

For dinner we were treated at the home of Todd and Liberty King.  They are working at starting a catering business and restaurant in Harlowton, and the whole Team went.    It was delicious !   Their home sits on a hillside overlooking more of that endless Montana countryside.   The wind had picked up and it was a great evening.   Back to sleep at the church that opened it's doors to us, and up to get on the road again.

Some of the Team at Todd & Liberty's

Montana expanses

Day 13

Off to Billings, and a rest day at Montana State University.   We're all excited, and Sarah, Sharon and I are rolling early as the sun is coming up.  We get delayed by more construction and decide we can ride it, so ride over about 9 miles of beat up road.   Sharon and I see 3 deer crossing the road about 50 yards in front of us.   They were magnificent, just over a fence on the left side of the road, across the road, and clearing a fence on the right side as though it wasn't even there !

Lunch was at Lavina.   Another pretty little Montana town.   They have this wonderful little green park, and a main street about 2 blocks long.

Pretty park for lunch

Downtown Lavina

Left Lavina and we had more climbing.   And more climbing.  I rode with Sharon for the rest of the day, and we got up the hills, and finally got ourselves to the Acton Steakhouse where we decided that we were starving and stopped for burgers.  
Getting to the top

Almost there !

Yep, from way, way, way back there !

Happy Sharon ... burger is coming !

Doron..  today's ride is almost done !

Rick is always smiling

Sharon and me

Billings is down there
After the burger fest, where Gene and Rick joined us, we rode on the last 15 miles to Billings.   We stopped to take a couple of pictures on the piece of rimrock that overlooks Billings, and then for a nice little descent into town and to MSU.

Maybe a movie this afternoon after we wash the bikes, and then on Monday morning we roll for Hardin, MT.   We will cross the 1000 mile mark on Monday I believe !

I got a phone call from my wife, Susan on Saturday evening and it looks like Luly has another cancer.   She is supposed to go for an initial evaluation of this one on Monday.   She has had to put up with a lot in the last few years, and we're thinking of you and praying for a great treatment of this thing.  Love you Luly !

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