The day started out in the mid 50’s but reached into the low 90’s in Montana. It was sunny all day.
Day’s distance: 512 miles
It had been a few weeks since my last trip, and I wanted to get out of the house. In thinking about where I might ride, I considered all of the active forest fires currently burning in Washington ,,,
and decided to ride east to Glacier National Park. I visited Glacier last year and wouldn’t mind riding the Going-to-the-Sun Road again.
The route I chose, Interstate 90 most of the way, was a little out of character for me but it avoided those areas impacted by the fires. While I avoided forest fires, I did get stuck in traffic at a construction site near the Montana border.
Eastbound traffic was stopped for about 30 minutes. It appeared that a semi-truck overheated, blocking the single lane until a tow truck was able to move it 🙁
Putting a positive spin on the decision to take I-90, I was able to exceed 500 miles in a single day. Long time readers of the blog may recall that on my Southern States Tour, I planned a 500+ mile ride on Day 57, traveling from Oklahoma City to Taos, New Mexico but stopped eleven miles short of that goal to camp at Cimarron Canyon State Park.
Once I turned off I-90 at St. Regis, traffic fell away.
Highway 135 followed the scenic Clark Fork River. In much of Montana, like much of Texas, I found generous speed limits. The limit along here was 70 mph.
Kalispell, Montana is just north of Flathead Lake. The scenery through the Flathead Reservation land at the southern part of the lake is less forested grass lands.
Congestion increased as I approached Lakeside, Montana. It was Dragon Boat Weekend, according to the signs I saw 🙂
I arrived at my motel about 6:30pm. With the timezone change, that meant I was on the road for about 10 hours, including the delay from the construction on I-90.
While I was unpacking, I met another R1200RT rider from the Seattle area. Charlie rode up along much of the same route I did, only he got on the road about 30 minutes earlier than me. We talked for a while about our bikes, and our travels. Good times!
I cleaned up and grabbed dinner at the local Montana Club. Not a bad steak. I was tired and planned to hit Glacier early so I called it a day – a good day.
I live a charmed life.