When Matt and I were planning our trip to cycle across America we had hopes and dreams what it might be like. While we don’t now what the next 6 weeks will bring us as we travel across America, we’ll always have the amazing first 18 days of our trip. Incredibly, just when we thought it couldn’t get better it would. While most of the rest of the U.S. has had an unbearable heat wave we’ve had a little good weather bubble following us around. While certainly it will burst soon as we head east, it was sure nice to have it while we did. The bubble sure did a nice job today as there were big Thunderstorms to the North of us but they never quite made it to us.
For those of you who have watched Apollo 13, you’ll remember that the crew was saved by living in the LEM for a while. When it was time to return to earth they had to exit the LEM, get back in the space capsule and then jettison the LEM. As Matt said, today we had to leave the LEM. Of course our LEM had become the comfort of the condo in Jackson and the beauty and familiarity of the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone. Matt and I earlier had said goodbye to Danica and Maggie and now it was time to say goodbye to our good friend John Hansen. Anyone willing to travel 2,200 miles on his motorcycle to spend 2 days with us will forever be a great friend! We rolled out of the condo at 7:30a and headed back in the support vehicle to the east end of Yellowstone Lake where we had left off on Friday. Between the 110 miles we had to drive, the Yellowstone traffic and Matt wanting “just a few more” Grand Teton photos, we didn’t start riding until 10:45a.
Our first 6 miles was a climb up to 8650 feet. What a way to start a ride! From there though we had an incredible downhill to the Yellowstone East Gate and then followed the Shoshone River all the way in Cody, WY for a 68.4 mile ride. We weren’t sure what we’d see today and since we were leaving Yellowstone our expectations weren’t that high. Now if you’ve been following our blog you already know you need to go over the Teton Pass, enjoy Jackson Hole, the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone. Well you need to add riding (or driving) from Yellowstone Lake to Cody along the Shoshone River to that list. It was an unbelievable ride along the river and through the dramatic canyon for miles and miles all slightly downhill. Not sure the photos will do what we saw justice, but it quickly became the inspiration for our blog title today. In addition, Yellowstone gave us a great wildlife sendoff with the strolling Bison (thanks Kim for the clarification) that I posted an earlier video of.
The only bumps in the road was that there was no real place to eat lunch so when we rolled into Cody we were starving. We immediately showered and then went to Bubba’s BBQ for a huge plate of food. Our waiter told us we were his first customers ever to order a water, large glass of chocolate milk (recovery drink) and a pint of Moose Drool Brown Ale (another kind of recovery drink). We also encountered a very strong side wind along the Buffalo Bill Reservoir that when it gusted would move us 2-3 feet to the right.
Now that we’re in Cody, were out of the forest and back to the a blend of desert and farmland where they irrigate. We had planned to go to the Cody rodeo tonight but we’re not sure as we have 110 miles to ride tomorrow and then have to climb up to 9,600 feet the next day and think we might just let our bodies relax tonight. Here’s the photos from today (I limited to 16 of the 120 we took).