We just made it into Idaho! Yesterday’s ride from Baker City was almost entirely downhill… One of the easiest fifty miles I’ve ridden. Now we’re riding to the flat, wide valley of the Snake River.
We had to say goodbye to Erin yesterday, as she veered south towards Boise to get a car back to Oakland. Andrew and I carried on, beginning a long climb from 2000 feet up to 7000 as we follow the Payette River into the sawtooth mountains. It was a beautiful ride along the rushing river yesterday, complete with cold plunges and hot springs. It so happened that we ended up camping next to the friendly folks who gave Erin and I cold La Croix as we climbed a pass way back in Central Oregon.
Now Andrew and I just loaded up with a huge breakfast to fuel our climb. Hopefully, we’ll meet up with Alice and Marcel tomorrow in Stanley!
Andrew and I had a great couple of days riding along the Payette River, stopping in hot springs along the way. We had to ascend up to 7200 feet, a tough, but beautiful, climb. The other side didn’t have much of a descent as we rode into the town of Stanley. This area is extremely crowded with tourists, but it’s easy to see why. Absolutely stunning views of glacier-covered peaks. It reminds of the Grand Tetons. All of the regular campsites were full, but we found a nice spot with a view. We then headed toward the lodge to do laundry while we waited for Alice and Marcel, where we were plied with scotch and soda while we waited for our clothes to dry. Alice and Marcel arrived from their sixty mile epic ride, and we retired to our campsite for beer, ice cream, and music making. A great day!
We’ll be going the Salmon River gradually downhill for the next several days – should make for some perfect bike riding!
This time, the adventure is starting even before I’ve left! During my final tuneup, I noticed a dent in my rim. The trusty folks at lucky duck bike shop suggested I should probably get my wheel rebuilt with a new rim. Unfortunately, they got the wrong rim shipped to them. They should have the correct rim by now, but hearing “what’s the latest cutoff time to make your flight” is a bit nerve-racking. Now I’m four hours away from when I need to be at the airport, with no rear wheel on my bike! But, old wheel or new, I’m getting on that plane!
I was a little trepidatious about my plan to forego the bike box and just put my bike on the plane in a large plastic bag – because my bike is so large, it’s hard to find a box but enough\n for it, plus it usually takes at least an hour to disassemble/reassemble it. With the bag method, I could just ride my bike to the airport, pop off the pedals and handlebars, and I was good to go!
Thankfully, the bike arrived unscathed. The only issue was that I had removed my rear derailleur in order to protect it, and somehow knotted up my chain while putting it back on. This resulted in me sitting on a train with bike grease up to my elbows trying to figure out how my cable ended up routed through my chain. But I made the connection with Erin without issues, even though my flight was an hour late, and the train from the airport was twenty minutes late.