I can’t believe it’s mid September already! After two days in Butte, I’m setting off again tomorrow morning. But after talking things over with local cyclists who know the route ahead I’ve had to change plans a little. I intended to just take the route as it comes, but I’ve been warned that at the altitude I’ll be, winter is likely to hit quickly, which could potentially mean deep snow on the trail by early October or earlier. This can happen anywhere north of central Colorado – and at my current pace I’m not likely to get to the Colorado border before the end of the month.
So in practical terms, this means I have to speed up significantly. this means avoiding some of the tougher, slower sections (such as the legendary/notorious Fleecer Pass just south of here), taking road detours where available. It means not taking some of the nice detours available around Yellowstone. It also means cutting down on rest days! Thats not a problem really as I am toughening up now and there aren’t many nice towns between here and Colorado (Idaho and Wyoming are next).
I’ll keep posting my progress, but I doubt I’ll get a chance to post any pics – my iPad is useless for this, and even a large town like Butte doesn’t always have Web cafes. I’ll try for a big riding day tomorrow – it’s about 80 miles to Elkhorn Hot Springs. From there it’s one day to the ghost town of Bannock, then into Idaho. The route swings east to Big Springs close to Yellowstone, then south again through quite remote areas of Wyoming, and then into Colorado.