6/25 - Darby to Jackson - Day 10

The Darby to Jackson was to be a new experience to for us. About 15 miles out of town the highway was having major construction work being performed. The road was closed to bicycles for 8 miles. Cycle America needed to arrange a set of shuttles to transport the bicycles across the construction. The routine was to get to the start of the shuttle, load the bikes on the van, drive across the gravel construction road and at the end, resume the ride.

At that point we still had 8 miles to the first summit of 6995 then 7241 feet to the summit of the Chief Joseph Pass. A quick down ride downhill ended at the picnic stop for lunch. I think that we arrived there by 10:30. After a long lunch we headed down to the Big Hole Battlefield Visitor’s Center. Of course we had to stop in to get some education (http://www.nps.gov/biho/). The mosquitoes were starting to bite as we walked to the visitor center building. As I left the battlefield I came across someone else on the tour running around while trying to put on his jacket and long bike pants. Of course I offered help by he said unless I had bug repellent, I couldn’t help. The mosquitoes where swarming around him!! By this time it must have been over 90 degrees out!!

I stopped in the very small dusty town of Wisdom for a root beer float with along with Bill and Carole from Maryland. Inside the café was a at least 8 other riders also having something cool and refreshing. After 30 minutes or so, it was time to hit the road. Even though we were warned that there might be strong headwinds, we were lucky enough to have a very light wind to slow us down the remaining 18 miles to Jackson.

Jackson is one of the small towns that Johnny Carson would joke about ( the town is so small that the you are entering and you are leaving are posted on the same pole). Jackson is also home of the Jackson Hot Spring Lodge. It’s a big lodge that was a welcome sight. The lobby is two stories tall. A bar to the right, the hot springs pool on the left up the stairs and trophy animals all around. The dinner was good and everyone seemed to just gather and chat all evening. The general store across the street had hard ice cream and Huckleberry was the most ordered. Tomorrow’s ride is scheduled to be only 48 miles, but with two hills on the way.

Jim and Lauri climbing Chief Joseph Pass

Brian at Chief Joseph Pass