Sunday, July 4, 2010

A mountain pass

Saturday was a beautiful, but hard day.

We left Ashton, ID by 7 am. The local middle school students cooked the meal and were a bit overwhelmed. They did not plan things well and kept running out of eggs and oatmeal. As we all finally left the school, they brought out a large pot of oatmeal - too late. One nice thing - Chris ha ridden the half mile to town at 6 am and brought back two cups of really good coffee. Sometimes the school coffee is weak so this hit the spot.

This was one of our best riding days. We had a tail wind for a good portion of the first 40 miles. That has rarely happened on this trip.

We rode well and had lunch by 10:30 am - a really good rice noodle dish with Thai seasonings. We got a double espresso on the way out of town and the barista asked if we were headed to the parade in the next town. It turns out our route went thru the local July 4th parade. We had to weave around it on the sidewalk, stopping to watch on occasion. That was fyun.

Then our climb tarted. We had to go over the 8600 foot Teton Pass. It took several miles and was at times 10% grade. Because of the altitude as well as steepness, I was really huffing. It just kept going. I started the climb with Chris and Nathan (20 yr old from CA), but fell off of their pace. This was one of the first times I almost stopped on a hill - but I kept going. I made it several minutes behind Chris (who thought it really wasn't that bad!)

The downhill was rough as the turns were tight and on some we were on the outside (cliff) edge. We had to brake a lot, but not heat up the brakes too much. We took our time going down.

We arrived at the campground in Jackson, WY and set up the tent - we were on the edge of a private campground. Basically we camped in an old farmers plowed field - not very good to sleep on. Lots of weeds and rocks.

We took the local bus to Jackson (9 miles away) and walked around town. It is a very touristy place - tee shirts shops, western wear stores and ice cream. Not what we enjoy.

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