Monday, August 24, 2009

Day 29 Ruby Valley to Madison Valley

We had a cushy two nights in Margo's loft!

We hitched a ride in Margo's horse trailer and then headed 8 miles in to Ennis.

Our new friend Margo with Mike and Gregory

The Gravelly Mountain Range


The Madison River

Bikers headed East
Gregory shared his parade candy with these nice folks.

West Fork Campground on the Madison River
Home-baked cinnamon rolls!

Date: Aug. 17, 2009

From: Sheridan, Montana (Car ride to top of pass just 8 miles from Ennis)

To: West Fork Camp (5.8 miles east of Jct. 287 and 87) on the Madison River

Route: Hwy. 287 S.

Passes: None

Miles: 40 miles

Top Speed: 47.7 mph

Weather: Glorious day in the high 60s.

License Plates Collected: 5 Montana plates

Gregory has thus far collected five license plates on the side of the road. The first three were just outside Missoula and collected within a half hour of one another and he collected two more today! These took a little bit of rock pounding to flatten out but never-the-less will be shipped home to Grammy and Papa in a package from West Yellowstone in a couple of days.

Margo (our hostess in Sheridan) offered to take us past Nevada City and Virginia City and to the top of the pass just this side of Ennis in her horse trailer. It didn’t take too much convincing. We had breakfast in town, went home and loaded up into the horse trailer, said goodbye to the horses, dogs and kitty and were on our way. We said goodbye to Margo and hope to connect with her again in North Carolina where she spends winter and is home to Mike’s folks where we will spend the holidays.

The views of the Gravelly Mountains on the right and the Madison Mountains on our left afforded spectacular views all day. We had not a speck of rain and comfortable temperatures that made for a nice day of riding.

Gregory had a little incident that scared Mom to death. I heard a scream, “My leg is twisted!” I whipped my head around and saw Gregory’s foot caught in his toe clip and twisted completely backwards and screamed hysterically, “STOP!” Mike already felt the drag on the bike and put the brakes on in a hurry. My first thought was that it was broken. I lifted him off the bike and put him in my lap and had Mike bring bandana and water. Just a few moments later a couple of gals pulling a U-Haul pulled up and asked if we needed help. They gave us ice and by this time we could tell it was probably just a sprain (he could move his toes and foot all around) so we gladly accepted the ice and the girls went on their way. We iced the ankle for about 20 minutes and Mike wrapped it up with what was left of his Coban wrap and we headed out with Gregory’s foot propped up on the handlebars. It wasn’t long before he was pedaling with his one good foot and then again with two. I’m telling you kids are flexible and more resilient than you think. We made 40 miles after 12:30 P.M. thanks to flat riding and good weather. The last few miles were tough (the wrap was starting to get to Gregory and he just wanted to be done for the day) but with limited camping we had to push on and agreed to go for the camp with the cold drinks and hot showers.

We got in too late for showers and opted instead to set up the tent and make some pasta before it got too dark. The store was closed so we didn’t get our cold drinks but by then it was cooling off so that hot drinks would have been more appropriate. One of the “locals,” Leroy told us to set up wherever and settle up in the morning and Chuck informed us that there were fresh-baked cinnamon rolls and hot coffee at 8 A.M. Life is good! We were also informed that it was 28 degrees the night before and the water in the doggie dishes had frozen. We bundled up, Mike strung up the food in the pavilion rafters (bears!) and we nestled down in our beds dreaming of cinnamon rolls and hoping for temperatures above 30 degrees!

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