Twig Adventures

SOBO Day 29: Lima, last “town” in Montana

July 23rd, 2019 Mm 834.2 to I-15 mm 850 then ride to Lima, MT Distance in miles: 15.8 0530-1000 I sleep very good until around 4 am, when the wind starts blasting my tent. I hear Relentless moving around, as one of his stakes has pulled out. Since we’re both up, I propose just packing and getting an early start. But there are flashes all about and I worry that a thunderstorm is approaching. It starts to sprinkle. We pack in the dark anyways and are atop the ridge by 0530 am. A red glow to the east greets us, followed by more ups and downs. At least the weather is cooperating. It is overcast but the storms have moved[…]

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SOBO Day 28: Hard-earned Miles

July 22nd, 2019 Mm 805.7 to mm 834.2 Distance in miles: 28.5 0600-1800 What to say about today? Well, it was another tough day, mostly because of all the short, steep climbs at the end. But overall it was pretty good. We are treated to a great sunrise as we walk along the open sagebrush prarie in the morning. Then we begin climbing up towards a pass on the south side of Garfield Mountain. Samson camped a little down the trail from us last night but we join up with him for the morning. We all have lunch at the pass, admiring the Red Conglomerate Peaks. We try to escape the flies as best we can by sitting high in[…]

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SOBO Day 27: Magic Miles

July 21st, 2019 Morrison Lake mm 772 to mm 805.7 Distance in miles: 29 0625-1900 I wake overnight to views of the moon reflecting on the lake and sounds of owls training each other on the proper sequence of hooting. It is so peaceful. But then my minds wonders to what kind of owls they might be. They sound like great horned owls but could be anything all the way up here. Perhaps my new favorite, the Great Grey Owl. We linger a bit longer than normal in the morning, reluctant to say goodby to the lake. Then we’re winding in and out valleys, up and over saddles, through high alpine meadows with elk, straight up over giant green hills,[…]

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SOBO Day 26: Moving Mountains

July 20th, 2019 Bannock Pass/HWY 29 mm 747 to Morrison Lake mm 772 Distance in miles: 25 1015-1930 Somehow I feel ok in the morning, despite not a lot of sleep and a questionable diet. I sit on the porch typing on my phone, pondering how it is that I have all my layers on in the middle of July. It has to at least be in the low 40s. Sam’s thermometer reads high 30s but I think it’s broken. It’s cold, period. After awhile, Sam brings out a thermos of coffee, which is so nice. Then the sun rises over the mountains and all is well. We go for breakfast at the store. I get some hot things from[…]

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SOBO Day 25: Leadore

July 19th, 2019 Mm 732 to Bannock Pass/HWY 29 mm 747, then ride to Leadore Distance in miles: 15 0615-1100 I mosey on down the trail in the morning, excited to end this long segment and eat a ton of food in town. But I worry about where Relentless is, coordinating a ride from the pass, and all the other logistics. My plan is just to get to the pass and see what happens. Is that even a plan? I run into a NOBO, Bearbait, early on. We have the usual chat about water sources, who is ahead and behind, etc. He has not seen Relentless ahead, so I conclude he must be behind. The trail winds through a bunch[…]

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SOBO Day 24: The Divide

July 18th, 2019 Goldstone Pass mm 700.7 to mm 732 Distance in miles: 31.3 0605-1830 We want another big day to make the following day a shorter distance into town. It’s was cold overnight but thankfully it did not rain. All my stuff is bone-dry in the morning and easy to pack. A steep climb greets us within minutes and I am happy for the warmth it brings. But then we are on an exposed ridge for awhile and the cold wind forces me to put layers back on. The sunrise is nice, the rays filtering through the clouds. It stays overcast, windy and cool all morning. This is a good thing since we walk through some burn areas that[…]

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SOBO Day 23: Bitterroot Fun

July 17th, 2019 Mm 668.5 to Goldstone Pass mm 700.7 Distance in miles: 32.2 0605-1900 What a better day than yesterday! My quads are sore from descending the steep slope but otherwise I feel recovered in the morning. We hope to do a big day and get at it nice and early. It is cold and everything is damp, but a big climb warms me right away. I greet the sun and views of alpine lakes and peaks. It looks a lot like the Sierras up here, with all the rock and scraggly trees. We descend into a valley and stay low through forests, meadows and even some sage brush most of the rest of the day. We catch up[…]

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SOBO Day 22: Difficult Times

July 16th, 2019 Big Hole Pass mm 641.5 to mm 668.5 Distance in miles: 27 0615-1830 Today is a tough time. There are lots of big, steep climbs and overgrown trail. But what really set things off is a navigational error and a treacherous bushwhack. We start the day on a mining road and promptly miss a junction where the single track trail breaks off. All the while I am saying that we need to check to make sure we are still on trail but my phone GPS won’t lock on to a location. When we finally realize our mistake, the junction is over a mile back and we have climbed a bunch. The guthooks map seems to show a[…]

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SOBO Day 21: Idaho Potatoes

July 15th, 2019 HWY 43 mm 625 to Big Hole Pass mm 641.5 Distance in miles: 17.5 1330-1900 Darby would get a pretty average to low rating in my book if it weren’t for the RV park and grocery. Not much is open on Monday so we get breakfast at the grocery deli…cheap and pretty good breakfast sandwiches! I have so much online business to do in the morning. My Altra Superior 4s have already developed blow-outs in both shoes, same location. The upper is actually separating from the sole. I do an emergency repair with superglue but doubt it will hold long. I order new shoes, socks, and sun gloves for the next town, Leadore. My parents are also[…]

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SOBO Day 20: Darby

July 14th, 2019 Mm 606.7 to mm 623 then 30 mile hitch to Darby. Distance in miles: 17 0615-1200 Town day, again. And only a short hike in…a half day. The trail is pretty gentle on us, nice and loamy, mostly downhill. We hike through small trees but with a very clear, clean understory. The beargrass flowers and lupine are inspiring, a spectacle of white and purple with some yellow flowers I don’t know mixed in. The fragrance after all the rain is sweet and subtle…I want to bottle it and call it some fancy french name. Veargrees.We come across another grouse family. I almost step on one of the chicks in the trail but it is old enough to[…]

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