Saturday, July 31, 2010

July 31, part 2 ... the rest of the day

Was a nice, relaxing day. Rider Chic and I went SHOPPING!!! After all, there were some things I needed for the trip … a sleeping bag, a mat, bug dope, snacks for the road, drink mix, apples. The list got longer the further into the store we got.

The first thing was a sleeping bag. And we got my snacks, apples, drink mixes, lip gloss, and a few other things. The next store was for my sleeping mat … cost more than all else put together because I wanted a good one … if I'm sleeping on the ground, I want to try to be comfortable. So a Thermax was in order. I'll test it … I may not last more than a night … I do not camp …

Rider Chic knows the guy who builds these little out buildings.  This one has a little bar inside and even has props.

Another one of the buildings ... they're really neat.
We went to lunch, came home and the rest of the kids were there … they were all going to the park to have some photos taken and what do you know … surprise … RAIN!!! Everywhere I go there's rain. Is it me? Thunder, lightning, wind. The whole works. So the photos were cancelled and we went to dinner … barbecue. Good stuff. Ate til I couldn't eat any more.

Connor and Bridger ...

Someone found my helmet in the closet.

Then Rider Chic and I went over to Don and Donna's to take some gear over for tomorrow's ride. Was so good to see Miss Scarlet again. She looked absolutely beautiful … the Belgrade shop had cleaned her up until she sparkles nearly as much as when she was new, right down to the chrome wheels. But she's even more beautiful now … she's got miles on her, experience, her beauty marks, and a brand new front tire. Was good to see her again. And I can hardly wait for the ride tomorrow. We're going to Virginia City …

So, all in for the night.

Short morning update

I forgot to say yesterday that I must have taken some of the rain with me because it was pouring in Minneapolis. 

Right now (8:45 a.m. MT time) we're finally up.  Slept until about 6:45 ... late for me usually, but needed some rest.  And coffee was the first order of the day.  YAY!!!!  Gotta have coffee first ... gets me going.  Don't need to eat for a while yet.

Rider Chic is making pancakes and bacon.  Yep, Two Bike, a meal before the alloted time ... getting my food fixes before we all meet up on Monday.  The Two Bike diet consists of one meal a day, in the evening, I've been told.  I'll be testing that out.   The Queen's diet consists also of one meal a day, but usually somewhere along afternoon or so ... then fruit maybe for an evening snack.  Oh yeah, I usually have a fiber bar or something somewhere about mid-morning.  So, my diet will continue to work; the meal just changes time during the day. 

So, pancakes and bacon have been served.  It's over and out time for now.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Inflight again, heading for the road

On the road again, or actually in the air again. Inflight, heading to Minneapolis. Roadrunner took me to the airport as she and the pugs came by to visit. She said she was looking for her “Patti-fix.” Is there such a thing, and does it work for any length of time? Doubtful. But I accepted her excuse to come by, enjoyed our brief visit and it was nice of her to take me to the airport.

Security had to have been the longest line I've ever waited in, but it's all part of the traveling game anymore, so get in line, stand, move forward. No wands, pat downs or long gloves this time. YAY!!!

I got up to the gate, and waited. Biker Bill had said my chances were good, and I settled in to people watch. The plane arrived and folks deplaned, and then more, and more and more. They came in waves, and about the time you'd think no more people could come out of the jetway, there'd be more. And more people gathered to wait to get on the flight heading out of Anchorage, too.
Finally they started the boarding process. I phoned home and found out that some last minute non-revs had listed, management types, and they were ahead of me in the line up and it wasn't looking especially good for me to get on the flight. But get on I did. My name was called and the gate attendant said I'd gotten the last seat. And I was on.

My seat was the middle one, but I was grateful to get on the flight … had to wake some young guy up to let me in. Then I chatted for a couple of hours with the guy on the other side of me. He was a young man who works on the slope, three weeks on and three off. He was going to Minneapolis to his parents to pick up his two kids, a boy and a girl. He has a motorhome and plans to do some traveling with the kids. A nice guy, and really connected with his kids. He showed me photos of them, and the slope and some of the animals there, too … fox, musk ox, reindeer. I shared some of my trip photos with him. Was a nice diversion for a while, and then it was time for naps, although I never do those very well on a plane.
Had a little bite to eat at the airport and a cup of very, very strong French roast coffee. Couldn't connect to the wi-fi … it was available, which means you have too pay for it. Nope, can't do that.
Wandered around and found some artwork in the airport that was pretty cool, so took a couple of photos. They were bronzes by a Gareth Andrews, and were very exciting to see … even when I was dead dog tired, which I was.

This is one of the bronzes, and the next photo will be a close up ... it's dedicated to the men and women who have fought in former wars.

Another bronze.  They were so interesting to see, and it's so nice to see great art in the airports.  Kept me busy for a little while.

I kept running back and forth between gates, trying to get to either Bozeman or Salt Lake City and then a flight to Bozeman. All the flights were full, and I kept phoning home to Biker Bill (Hobbs) who kept looking at flights, telling me which one to try, and listing me on all of them.

Finally got a flight … it was the one the furthest distance away from where I'd last tried, from Gate C-20 to Gate F-13.

And I made it to Bozeman (about 1:15 p.m., Friday, July 30), called Rider Chic and she picked me up, and we started talking right where we left off two weeks ago. She took me home, went back to work and I crashed on her couch. It wasn't for too long, but enough to give me my second wind. Her daughter, Jamie, along with her husband Sam and two kids, arrived. The kids are cute little tykes … Conner the eldest and Bridger. I enjoyed meeting the kids, and Conner, who is four, is really grown up in some ways. He's very proficient in his language and sometimes seems so serious in the things he says. They're a kick, and I enjoyed sharing time and a meal with them. We'll all be together here tonight. It's a family event, and I'm family.

Here's Rider Chic demonstrating an Eskimo Yo-Yo I brought down.  She wants to show Angel how to do it, and she showed Connor tonight.  This was a photo op if I ever saw one.
This is Bridger, Jamie, Connor and Sam ... a beautiful family.

And so, I'm all in.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

July 17 and 18, with Rider Chic and home

July 17 / a whole day with Rider Chic

Note:  I've added photos to the June 16 post now.

One final note about yesterday, it was the one probably closer call than I would have liked. I was riding down the road, Highway 89, no one ahead of me, no one behind me. A string of cars was coming at me in the other lane. Then all of a sudden a vehicle pulls out of the middle and starts passing cars. Of course, I've got on not only my headlight but my running lights. I should have been pretty visible. Did this person pull back into line? Nope. He kept coming until he had passed several vehicles. I had begun pulling over onto the shoulder whiole keeping a steady on him. Other cars had also moved over to their shoulder. He got back into the string, and when he went by you can bet I gave him the biggest, most visible Number One sign I could. You just have to wonder about some of these folks.

It's now Jan's and my time, and we got up this morning and continued to talk non-stop. I know that's hard for many folks to believe … by 3 p.m. we figured we'd better start getting showered and painted up since we were going to her friend's house. I was taking the bike to them and they were going to take it in for service while I'm gone. We were to be there around 6 p.m., and I told Jan that while I knew the Harley shop would wash it, I wanted to get some of the big chunks off. So, we showered, got a load of my clothes in the washer, and then continued to talk until we had to leave. Still non-stop talking. Yep, imagine that.
A little before 5:30 we left and headed first to the car wash, then to Don and Donna's house. They have three little dogs (Tsu zhues sp) and a granddaughter staying with them, Angel. They are really nice folks, and Angel looks like just that with her long dark hair and blue eyes. She also likes to blow bubbles. WOW!!! Who knew I'd see another bubbler!!! lol.

Angel, Rider Chic, Donna and Don.

Rider Chic Jan and me.

Don threw steaks on the barbie, which I later found out were from Donna's relative's ranch. It had to be one of the best steaks I've ever eaten, and I'm not a huge steak person. But I ate nearly the whole thing, while surreptiously cutting up a couple of small pieces to curry favor with the dogs. I was practicing for when I get home and have to face the angry crowd of Beagles.

I was in heaven with macaroni salad, and beans. What great people they are to take my bike in, to keep it for me, to take it in for the service and take it back to their house for safekeeping in their garage.

Don taking Miss Scarlet into their garage.

And to invite me for dinner, too. Hospitality like that is something that is sometimes forgotten. I'm so incredibly lucky to have friends like that, who also have friends like that. And btw, Don has a 2005 black Road King Classic, so Miss Scarlet and the RK were becoming fast friends and I know she won't be lonely while I'm gone. We've ridden nearly 9,000 miles, riding every day although not big mileages most days, and a few very small-mileage days. It's like I'm leaving one of my best friends behind.

I saw a few of these lawn ornaments on our trip and know they are mostly non-existent anymore.
I really liked the Indian chief.

And of course, I had to have a photo of this one.
Rider Chic and I returned home and continued our non-stop talking. I worked on blogging for a while, had trouble with the photos and called it a night. I was all in.
July 18

It's time … for me to go home. Up early to get ready, to pack everything to take home and to pack up what will remain behind for the trip back in a few weeks. Some things can go home that won't be used again for the next trip … like my banquet clothes for the Vermont Women on Wheels Ride In. It's cargo pants and a nice jacket top that won't fit the Sturgis image. Of course, your image and mine for Sturgis is probably different, as I'm not the type who will wear some of the things I've seen there … absolutely not!!! There are some of those folks who shouldn't be wearing what they will be wearing either. Makes for a very bad visual … and a nauseated stomach.

New Harley shirts are coming home, my vest with my pins and state map, things I bought … although not really much. It was different this trip as I really didn't get in the mood to do a lot of shopping, and wasn't in a lot of places where I could. When I was somewhere it was so hot all I wanted to do was get inside and get something to drink.
I phoned home to be sure nothing had changed as far as my standby listing, and things were looking good for me to make the flights. Rider Chic took me to the airport and we sat and chatted still more … and then it was time for me to get up and go through security. The Chic was gone and I was on my way.
Security was fun … and I thought of my Princess … Birdie. They gave me the rubber glove treatment and went through everything. They had wanded my hands and apparently something showed up on them so I got the gloved pat down. But they were very nice, and quite professional. At least they didn't pull out the LONG gloves!!! And then I was done. But not before talking to one of the TSA ladies about motorcycles. They'd seen my vest in the bag when they were going through everything and were impressed; she had had a knucklehead a long time ago and was considering getting another bike. She was looking at a Road King, and I told her it would be an excellent bike for her. She's 5' 6” and it would fit one very well.
Off I went, got on my flight and flew out of Bozeman Airport. It's a great airport, not too big, and quite nice looking.

It was an uneventful flight to Minneapolis, and I was sitting in first class. Thanks, Biker Bill. Alas no meal, but snackies and orange juice and water.
In Minneapolis, I was hungry so grabbed a sandwich, stopped to buy a book, and then headed for my gate. I heard this “Hey Bogan,” turned around and there my my friend from work, Rena, who is kind of a former biker chick, although her husband has a bike. Rena had Grandma as her first bike, one whose front end was so tight she couldn't get it around a corner. Then she had a Heritage painted white and what I called fireweed, a beautiful thing that gave her nothing but trouble and she eventually got rid of it. Her husband has a bike which she can ride, but she'd like to have her own again. Of course, I encourage that as I love seeing other women on their own. Thanks to Biker Bill for that, too, as he encouraged me from the beginning, and was exceptionally patient.

As I sit on the flight now, in an exit row again, it's quiet and I chatted with one of my seat mates for a time and showed him some photos from the trip. There's no wi-fi so I can't get online and do any posting. So I'll have to save that for later.

With that, once I hit the Anchorage airport in five hours or so, I'll be all in for this trip. I'm in Anchorage, I'm all in, and that's all for this trip.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

REPOSTED with PHOTOS, July 16, Thermopolis to Belgrade (posted July 17)

Notice:  Only a few photos are here / I'm too tired to finish it, and my computer is not helping.  More photos later.

I made it to my friend, Jan's, in Belgrade. I've known her for nearly 40 years, dating back to when we both worked at the FAA in Fairbanks back in the early 1970s. We have a lot of history although we've not seen each other too much over the past number of years. The last time I saw her was a couple of years ago for an hour's visit when Biker Bill and I were traveling through here. You can bet we did non-stop talking until we went to bed.

My last day's journey to get to Jan's was a great one. It was mostly the kind that makes you want to stay on the bike and travel forever. I was wearing a long-sleeved T-shirt, a sweatshirt, light gloves and my stars and stripes headband, rolling out of my motel just before 8 a.m. I did turn Spot on, but somehow it again got tripped and did not record my travels.

It does appear that it's time for this trip to end … I ran out of deodorant (not that it's been working in the heat)and I either need to come home or do laundry again.

Jan didn't usually get off work until 5 p.m. or so, so I knew I had a rather leisurely day of riding, about 270-300 miles or so. So, of course, there would be lots of time to take photos along the way.

My chosen route was Highway 120 to Cody, then on up 296, through the northeast gate of Yellowstone to Gardiner and into Livingston on 89, and then I-90 hellbent for Bozeman, then Belgrade.

At 7:55 a.m. It was 64 degrees, and I made the correct turn out of the motel parking lot. I always have a 50 percent chance of being right. Parking lots are my nemesis.

I rode the top of the plains where it was cool, sunny and absolutely perfect riding. It felt as though I were on top of the world and I could ride forever, just for the pure joy of riding. It's when you and your bike are one, and everything … stars, moon, sun have come together to create joy and perfection in your world.

There were more antelope today, although nowhere near as many as yesterday, and I had a deer alongside the road, trying to make a decision to cross or not in front of me. I stopped to take photos and unknowingly (couldn't smell it right away) stopped right near a dead cow elk. I saw it, legs up in the air, as I had walked off the road a little ways toward a fence to try to catch yet another wildlife photo. Must have been hit by a truck it was so far off the road. Ugh.

Highway 120 follows distant mountains capped with snow, yet you're down in a valley, until you start the climb up toward Meeteetse. I passed a 5,797 elevation sign.

In Cody, I found a veteran's memorial that was dedicated in 2009 to veterans of World Wars I and II and Viet Nam, and stopped to take multiple photos for the Marine vet I live with. I enjoy being able to share some of these things with him as I know they're important to him.

There are stones dedicated to those who lost their lives.

This is the Viet Nam part of the memorial.

The museum Biker Bill said I should at least take a photo of to prove I'd been there.,

Biker Bill had said I should stop by the Cody Museum in remembrance of our rides there, but I elected not to and to keep going. I made a wrong turn and missed the 120 highway, and had to backtrack. I figured that was a sign that I was to go to the museum and take a photo to prove I was there. When we had visited the museum a number of years ago, the security folks apparently thought we were not of a caliber of person that should be there and kept a very close watch on us. It was the atmosphere of a library, yet we stood in front of a wall-sized painting of Custer's Last Stand, and Biker Bill told me this joke. We laughed, and the security guy moved toward us, knowing that we had done something we should not have. Just talking. Anyway, if you want to know the joke about Custer's Last Stand, ask me. Sometimes I even remember how it goes. But it's one of the few I remember.

At one of my gas stops I talked to a guy who is a Goldwing rider. He was doing a lot of work for his job, packing stuff back and forth. I was behind him for a ways on the highway, but actually dropped back. Good thing. I had to skirt something lying in the road. There he was parked just up ahead, and walking back toward it. He just raised his hands at me, and shook his head. I waved and kept on moving, but was glad I'd not been following closely.

There is beautiful scenery along this highway, green hills, rugged mountains, some with snow, even some red rock.

As I rode the Chief Joseph Highway, I stopped at Dead Indian Pass, elevation 8,048. There's a really cool Indian cutout.

This is the road I was going down after I left Dead Indian Pass.

There are signs of lots of logging of dead trees. Trees in piles, some cut and ready to be loaded onto trucks and moved out. I navigated hairpin turns that years ago frightened me. Now, it's just do it, and enjoy it. I had also moved into the realm of open range and cattle that claimed the road from me. I wasn't nearly as bothered by them as the bison. How can you be afraid of a friendly-looking Bossie cow. And on I went up the hill.

Near Cooke City, located by the northeast entrance to Yellowstone National Park, I saw an elevation sign of 7,651 feet. I rode through glorious Shoshone and Gallatin National Forests, where trees cover the hillsides, green and fragrant.

I entered the park and saw bison … actually hundreds of them … alone and in herds. None of them were on the road claiming it this time. I stopped and took a couple of photos because I just couldn't resist more bison photos.

The funny one was seeing two bison in the water cooling off. I saw a few others laying near the rivers and creeks, and many who were laying claim to some of the same turf as fly fishermen.

Fly fisherman on the left by the river, and the buffalo lying on the dirt on the right.

I couldn't believe the number of fishermen … I don't remember seeing that before, but maybe it's just in the northern part of the park. I saw two Canada geese, and then leaving the park in Mammoth, there was a herd of cow elk on the grounds around all of the buildings. The park rangers were having quite a time trying to keep people at a distance from them. I did not stop. I was hot, worried about getting to Belgrade and had not stopped to eat, except for a couple of handfuls of almonds, so I was starving.

I pushed on, and got to Gardiner which is Highway 89. I kept going until I hit I-90, and headed west to the Harley Shop in Belgrade. It was combat riding at its best. The speed limit is 75 mph, I was going 80 and having trouble keeping up. But I kept out of the way and found the shop where I called Jan, who is now to be known as “Rider Chic” and let her know where I was.

Rider Chic showed up at the shop after I'd bought my prerequisite T-shirt and I followed her home. It was really nice to get off the bike at this point. I've done nearly 9,000 miles in less than a month, and I'm tired as I've ridden every day, no breaks. Waaaahh. But now it's over and I must leave the lovely Miss Scarlet behind. She will be safe as she is with a retired cop/ex-marine's family in their garage, safe and sound next to his Road King.

And with that, I am truly all in.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

July 14 with Jaz, and July15, I'm now resting in Thermopolis,WY

It was a great day of riding when it was all finished. When we got up this morning, it was muggy, but had a little cloud cover, and a haze.

As we were getting ready to leave, we saw a red cardinal sitting on the wire. The cameras weren't ready. We'd had them in the room and when we brought them out and tried to use them they were all fogged up. Mine was still fogged up when we crossed the Missouri River, after having to pay a $1 per bike toll, into Nebraska and I wanted to take a photo of the Nebraska sign, Home of Arbor Day, for my boss, who is a Nebraskan and a Husker fan. So I'm going to show that photo anyway.

Home of Arbor Day.  We had to pay to get into Nebraska.
I saw a hen turkey along side the road. It's the only game I saw today.

This was at the Frontier HD in Lincoln, Nebraska.
We had lunch and I had a patty melt. That might have been the Western Tour food, but I just can't seem to get into anything. I keep wanting to go back to BLTs, but know I'd be so disappointed.

It started heating up. It was 82 at 7:46 a.m. when we got on the road and 88 degrees at 9 a.m. By 11:30 it was 92 … and just kept getting hotter. The warmest I saw during the day was 97 degrees at 1:40 p.m. I can tell you that my deodorant was not working today, and I lost another two water bottles. I also lost another bandage on my leg. Jaz says they can track us just from the trail of bottles and bandages I'm leaving behind. I cannot believe I'm losing all these water bottles. That is not the norm. And some of them have been brand new ones, the seal not even broken.

There's a lot of road construction going on in Nebraska, so we had to make a few detours. Zumo got us on a road that ended up closed due to construction. We finally got to another destination as we were too far out of the way to get to the original one. Worked out since it didn't really matter which place we were going to as we were looking to have breakfast.

Ended up with some wind but by the time we hit the Nebraska National Forest and gaining a little altitude, everything was perfect. It ride was absolutely excellent. We also had cloud cover off and on for most of the day and it really helped to keep some of the sun at bay.

There's been a lot of flooding in many of the states we've been riding through.
There was a lot of evidence of flooding in Nebraska, too. There were several corn fields that were just still standing, yellowed by too much water, and then dried out. It's sad to see crops that have been destroyed. I took a couple of photos of corn but am not sure how it was destroyed. The whole stock is not there, so don't know if they harvest only a part of them, or what. I kind of don't think so, but this was just really strange. I also saw a fence line that just wandered into the water, and cattle that are laying and standing in ponds and mud.

We saw a number of fields that had been destroyed.
I also learned that a milled surface is like our grooved pavement, except not as wiggley-wobbley. I learned, too, that Loup City is the Polish Capital of Nebraska. The sign said so.

We also have finalized our synchronized red light running. We had perfect synchronization when we ran a light that did not change for us … we did wait a while before we took off. Proper synchronization takes time and we had to wait for the proper count of 1 … 2 … 3.

Nice looking elk.
We stopped for gas near Thedford, at a Sinclair, Highway 2. Inside there were two elk mounts and several deer ones. The elk came from Wyoming and the deer from around there. I always take photos for Biker Bill cuz he likes to see them.

I like to see the elk, too.
Okay, last dead heads for the day, promise.
We saw lots of trains today, many more than any other day. They are mostly carrying coal, which I understand is in Wyoming. The best part is that we got most of them to give us a blast of the horn. YAY!!! Where we stayed tonight is right across from a train yard, so Jaz and I walked across and took train pictures.

Is there anything finer than a train?  Jaz and I got many of them to honk at us today.
Was very convenient to have these right across the street from our motel.
We saw hundreds of cars loaded with coal being transported by rail.
In fact, speaking of the trains, because there are so many railroad crews around and other construction, we had a hard time finding a room.

I talked to my friend, Jan in Montana, tonight. I plan to be at her place in Bozeman on Friday, so we'll have Friday and Saturday to visit. The Great White Hunter will list me to fly on Sunday, Bozeman, Minneapolis and Anchorage, so I may be home a day early. I'll leave Miss Scarlet at Jan's friend's house and while I'm gone she may be serviced so she's ready and waiting for me when I return a couple weeks later. I've promised Jan more time when I come back … she thinks we'll need lots more time to talk. We've not seen each other in a couple of years, and then it was only for an hour. It will be great fun, and we can totally catch up. She's got grandbabies, and I need to find out all about them. Plus everything else.

Tomorrow will be sad. Jaz and I have been traveling together for nearly three weeks, and together pretty much 24/7. As I sit here typing, she's in the other bed working on her story, too. That's what we do. It's been a great run and I'm sad that it's over. But we'll live to ride another day.

The post isn't going online tonight as the internet service is only in the laundry room and the pool area and I'm too lazy to go up there tonight, so I'll have to try to post tomorrow. It's 9 p.m., I'm tired and with that, we're all in.

July 15

Yellow flowers are my favorite.
Nobody died, no one was cranky and Zumo, the GPS, survived. It's a wonder as Zumo and I had some real issues over the past few weeks, but mostly during the past couple of days. I read signs, Zumo does her own thing. It was a great trip, but Jaz and I had to part ways this morning; she left at about 6:30 a.m. heading for California, and I left about 7 a.m. heading the other direction toward Montana.

I was wearing a sweatshirt and gloves this morning as it was a bit cooler. Of course, I immediately turned the wrong way out of the parking lot and had to turn around. I hate that. I went down and hit Highway 87 because I wanted to go see Carhenge, which is Nebraska's answer to Stonehenge. It's a replica of England's ancient alignment of stones that chart the phases of the sun and the moon. It was very interesting to see all of these vintage cars on end, buried in the ground. They are primarily from the 1950s and 60s, and the cars are about 7 feet wide, the same size as the standing stones of Stonehenge. I was the only one there so it was very cool.

The whole exhibit from a distance ... Carhenge.

This whole exhibit is amazing.

This was also at Carhenge.  I thought it a very neat piece.

So, what animals did I see today? I had a jackrabbit go in front of me, and what I think might have been a hen pheasant, although it looked like a roadrunner, so am not sure. I also saw more than a hundred antelope, a few herds of about twenty or so, and singles and four or five together. The most interesting thing I saw not too far off the road was a single antelope that was apparently being stalked by a coyote. I did not stop.

This is a loveable face.

Another antelope shot.
Some thoughts on things I saw today … a white-faced black cow lying down next to a fence looking straight at me with her yellow tags in her ears, a truck hauling hay going very slowly because it had a very flat tire, more construction in Nebraska than I think we have at home (also lots in Wyoming), heavy crosswind going one way, then the other once I changed direction (because there's nothing to stop it?). When I stopped to take photos I thought the bike would blow over …

How can you not like this little face?  When horns are small or non-existent, they don't seem nearly as mean lookingl.

What a ham this guy was.  It was like he wanted his photo taken.

Wyoming, trucks, guys with cowboy hats and lots of motorcycles. Ain't it great. I passed the Dave Johnston power plant at Glenrock. And the highest elevation sign I saw today was nearly 6,000 feet. No wonder most of my day was pretty pleasant riding. Mostly the speed limit was 75 mph, but I was running mostly 60-65. After all, I am still on holiday, and looking for photo support.

The Dave Johnston Power Plant.  It's actually in a very pretty setting.
Somewhere along the way I crossed the Big Horn River, which I think deserves a mention.

I stopped at the Casper shop, and as I was leaving, two women rode in on Sportsters. They had identical bikes, each pulling an identical trailer. They are teachers from Alberta taking a month to go to Texas and back … on a Sportster. I surely commend them.

Wind River, a beautiful ride along the river and in the canyon.
The Wind River Canyon is a beautiful ride, and I took it again. Years ago Biker Bill, his friend Bob and I raced a storm through the canyon trying to get to a motel so we wouldn't get soaked. This time was much more pleasant. There are three tunnels that you ride through, and lots of places to stop and take photos and look at the river and the rock formations.

One of the three tunnels.  You can see the other side from this end.

In the Wind River Canyon.  My bike looks really small.
So I'm here in Thermopolis, but not staying in the same place we stayed years ago, that was at the hot springs. I'm in a little motel called the Paintbrush Motel. It's very nice, and I'm in a new building with three rooms. The one I'm in is a handicapped room, so plenty of space, a huge shower, and even embroidered towels. My bike even gets to park under an overhang. Wow, got lucky again. I even let Vern out of the tour pack today to come in the room. He had not been very nice on previous days, saying things to Jaz, like “how ya doing baby?” So he pretty much was in time out most of the trip.

This is a very nice room.

Vern  was checking out where we'd been today in comfort.

Covered parking is always a plus.  You never know when it will rain.

Embroidered towels just add a touch of class.
Walked about a mile down the street to have some barbecue, and back. I should not have walked so far as I got overheated. Oh well. The air conditioner is a great one and I can set the thermostat to whatever I want. Had it set on 66 and had to turn it up warmer, if you can believe that.

Welcome to my good friend, Tom, the Zookeeper. Many miles we've traveled together, too.

So I'm fed, I'm in a nice room, and I'm all in.