Day 3 – Trip to Beartooth Pass


Day’s distance: 243 miles
Total trip distance: 1,047 miles

The weather was near perfect for today’s ride. Temperatures started out in the mid 50s, were in the mid 60s at the start of my ascent, then dropped back into the 50s on Beartooth, and finished in the mid 80s after I left Yellowstone and headed to Bozeman.

The motel had a hose, soap and wash rags for their biker guests to use, so I washed some of the bugs off the windscreen and headlights while enjoying the sunny start to the day.


I’m not a big breakfast eater but I try to eat as much as I can if the motel has a breakfast offering. I also grabbed an apple to put in my tank bag for later in the day.

I stopped in Red Lodge for fuel, both premium for the bike and a latte for me. I also grabbed a piece of banana bread for later on.

The entrance to the Beartooth Scenic Byway was just outside of town.


Riding into the park from the north, you wind your way into the valley and then up the mountain through a series of switchbacks.

In the photo below, that means you come in from the road in the lower right corner and continue along the valley floor …


until you start weaving back and forth up the hillside …


to the first of many spectacular vista points.


Like Glacier National Park, there are jammers full of folks who are choosing to ride the Beartooth Highway instead of driving.


I made it to the summit!


There were a lot of bikers. These two were riding Harleys with Colorado plates.


Looking south at the road as it winds down from the summit.


South of the pass, there is a bit of road construction resulting in some delays …


and a couple miles of hard-packed gravel. For those familiar with the road, the construction began (or ended, in my case) at the Top of World Store.


Outside of the construction zone, the roads were all in excellent shape.

I believe the scenic byway officially ends in Cooke City, where  I stopped for soda and to look at the other bikes. It sure was a lot nicer than in October of 2016, when I was last here. That day was cold and rainy, but not today.


One of the jammers came through town. At first, I didn’t realize they had an open top. Anyway, I caught a quick photo of the one-jammer “parade” as it drove past.  🙂


I can now officially check off the Beartooth from my bucket list!

Cooke City is just a few miles from the Northeast entrance to Yosemite.


As the weather report predicted, the clouds gathered in the afternoon, though it never rained, on me anyway.

Much of the time in Yellowstone, I was following a line of cars that would stop in the middle of the road to take photos. At least I pulled off the road. LOL


I’d been told to watch for the bison. There were many herds in this part of the park. This one was obviously in charge.  🙂


There was more traffic than I expected and it took an hour longer to exit the park along Hwy 89 than it should. Ugh. That’s the way it is during the summer in our national parks and I wasn’t too surprised.

Following the Yellowstone River, I traveled north to Livingston and then west to Bozeman, where I’m spending the night.

Tomorrow, I’ll be heading to Spokane to catch up with friends who live there. I’m looking forward to it.

What a great day!

4 thoughts

  1. Wonderful to see you and catch up a bit. Have a beautiful and safe ride home. GoldieHawn is missing you already!

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