Today we rode between 36 and 39 miles depending which navigation unit you believe. We left Spray Lakes a few minutes earlier than our departure yesterday. Good morning and the weather was beautiful. The ride today was completely different terrain than yesterday. Most of the ride was on the Spray Lakes Road which provides access to the national parks. Even though it was very very remote it’s a little busy with traffic. The surface was very much like a washboard but had recently had Peastones added. We had to watch the surface closely for potholes and loose gravel. We also wanted to look at the beautiful scenery and simultaneously scout the road sides for bears. If you crossed from the clear rideable space in the center to a clear rideable space on the shoulder, you ran the gauntlet or crossed the eddy line of 4 inch deep pea stone. Controlling the heavy bike through the soft stones provided some adrenaline. We went slowly, and put up our bandannas over our faces every time a car passed creating a dust cloud. We had to make a choice between blinking the dirt away and keeping your eyes on the road. Just before we stopped for lunch at the Creek near Mount Engadine Lodge we saw a grizzly pass from the right to the left side of the road. I had given clear instructions not to yell bear when you see a grizzly but when it passed between Mimi and Tara and me I yelled bear! bear! bear! bear! very loudly. The bear climbed the bank on the roadside and wandered off. Shortly after lunch, on the same road, a larger grizzly with a leather collar came onto the road from our left, directly across from us. Tara said “keep riding, keep riding” and we rode on by with no trouble. Eventually we came to a paved road in the Peter Loughee Park and then a bike path, and we stopped at the Bolton Creek trading post for ice cream. Beyond that section the bike path was closed due to bear activity so we went back on the road until we reached our campground. We all took turns bathing under the water pump. Set up our tents with a beautiful view of the mountains. The weather is warm and dry.
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Tara, Mimi and Jen love life and adventure.