Wind, the ultimate equalizer.

Island Park, ID

Day 39

80.53 miles

We climbed out of Virginia City, it was steep and a good climb to get the legs pumping, and with all climbs, there was a real nice downhill into Ennis, MT afterwards.  From Ennis we went south down 287 along the Madison River.  I have to say it was a pretty ride, but this turned into the toughest ride of the trip.  We faced headwinds of plus 20 mph without break for the rest of the ride on 287 and it took us over 5 hours to go the 40 miles to where we would pick up route 87 south for the final 20 miles into our destination in Island Park, ID.  We would be staying at a gentleman’s get away house/ man barn.  It ended up being such a long day, pedaling for over 8 hours, that when we finally arrived it was dark out. 

I have to say wind is the ultimate equalizer.  As great of bike shape as we are now in, it just beats you up no mater what.  It can be completely flat, even down hill, and you'll be in a low gear peddling hard just to maintain 6 or 7 mph.  It beats you up mentally and really doesn't provide nearly the rewarding feeling you get from a big climb.

In short, we hate the wind and it seems like we've had so many more head winds than tail winds, maybe that will change once we head east, but im not planning on it.  When we went north up the coast they were in our face, and now heading south through Montana, Idaho and Wyoming, they are into us again.

 This is Ryan's "are you kidding me with this wind?" face.  Entering hour 6 of riding into it, the sun was starting to set, it was cold and we were beat.

This is Ryan's "are you kidding me with this wind?" face.  Entering hour 6 of riding into it, the sun was starting to set, it was cold and we were beat.

When we arrived at our destination, the owner’s son was there with a few friends celebrating a bachelor party for one of their buddies.  They were a younger group and when I got there I could tell they were nervous, so I broke the ICE.  “Listen guys, it’s clear you are all intoxicated and you’re hoping your one friend is going to handle all the talking, it’s ok though, we don’t care”.   They all immediately relaxed, I was confused as to why they were so nervous until they explained they were all under 21.   Ahh to be young.

We explained to them that we were exhausted from the ride and probably would just shower, eat and call it.  Well half of them passed out drunk before us any ways.  It was a very nice place to stay, we all had our own beds and got a good sleep before getting up early to tackle a big next day.