The Substance of Faith

The Substance of Faith

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Yellowstone Days 1 and 2

On Sunday we took a taxi to the La Quinta Inn in Belgrade where we met the guides and other riders.  Emily and DeAnne, our guides for the week, set up bikes with our pedal and seats, loaded us up and shuttled us to the West Entrance to the park.  Traffic was lined up to enter, meaning once inside and on our bikes, the pent up line of cars, trucks, and campers came whizzing by for the first several miles.  As we went deeper into the park, traffic became more spread out and slightly less of a problem.

Almost immediately we started to see the quintessential Yellowstone scenes: large meadows cut by streams and evergreen forests.  Our first test of climbing came at Gibbon Falls.  It wasn’t terrible, but we had begun to creep into higher elevations than we were accustomed.

One person who had visited Yellowstone as a child told me all they remembered was traffic.  Traffic became problem every time we saw wildlife.  If a bison was off to the side, cars in both directions stopped on their respective sides of the road, making it difficult for two way traffic to move forward.

As a matter of fact, he does own the road

As a matter of fact, he does own the road

Deeper into the park we took a narrower road past Victoria Cascades.  This road was off limits to buses, campers, and trailers, making it much more enjoyable for us.  In fact, there was very little traffic at all.  As we came back to the main road we had short, steep climb that left us all short of breath.  We were keeping track of altitude and thought we had passed the highest point for the day, but we were wrong.  A quick downhill and then another, longer, steep climb was a challenge.

We made our way to the Lake Lodge area, having to stop twice for bison on the road.  Rangers bumped them with their SUV’s leaving us safe passage.   Our first day we rode 58 miles and enjoyed ourselves all day.

The next day we rode from the cabins at Lake Lodge to Old Faithful.  This stretch is one of the busier in the park, as everyone wants to see Old Faithful.  We ate lunch, prepared by our guides, in the parking lot and then went to see the eruption.  I guess you need to go if you are already there, but many of us found it a letdown.

Following lunch we road 6 miles to the Firehole Lake loo, where we saw an abundance of sulphur springs.  The ride back to Old Faithful was against a strong headwind and accompanied by the heavy traffic in the area.  Eleven of the thirteen riders in the group, including me, decided to take a bump in the van instead of recrossing the continental divide in the wind. Our second day mileage was almost identical to the first day.

We were told the British pronounce this word as "gee-zer," giving new meaning to the picture.

We were told the British pronounce this word as “gee-zer,” giving new meaning to the picture.

On the way to Old Faithful we climbed across the Continental Divide, the highest point yet on our trip.

On the way to Old Faithful we climbed across the Continental Divide, the highest point yet on our trip.

 

 

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