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Great Divide Day 5

After a good night’s sleep at the B&B in Ferndale, I woke up with a lot of pressure when I bent my knee. Turns out you have to bend and straighten your knee a lot when you ride bikes all day. I shot a text to my good friend Erin who is a cyclist and a physical therapist. She gave me some KT tape tips and recommended a stretch, ice, and ibuprofen. The KT tape seemed to help with the pressure and my knee loosened up after a few miles. We started out on flat pavement for a bit then started climbing on a gravel road. We were both pretty tired first thing in the morning so our ride was fairly quiet on the steep climb. We had a snack at the top and felt like real people again after the food.

One of our biggest challenges so far is eating enough. It’s hard to have an appetite for the amount we need. We were pretty hungry by the time we got to the Holland Lake Lodge that advertised “fine dining” at 70 miles. We joined some other cyclists and ordered beer.  While we waited for our food, the waitress asked, “are you guys bikers? You’re a lot cleaner than the other people who come through here.” I guess the shower yesterday did us some good. We ate a steak dinner with mashed potatoes, rolls, and carrots. It was delicious but we were still hungry so we ordered more dinner rolls and dessert. I think that was the fanciest and most expensive dinner Andrew and I have eaten together.

After we finished our meal, we filled up our water bladders then headed up Richmond Pass. There were trees across the trail at the bottom and when we stopped to climb over, mosquitoes swarmed us. We kept moving as much as we could. While my knees loosened up during the ride, Andrew’s started nagging at him. We took the climb easy to avoid aggravating our knees more. There was more snow on this pass so it was a slow hike-a-bike at the top. When we were finally past all the snow, we cruised on some singletrack on a ridge and finished the descent into Seeley Lake on a gravel road. 

We pulled up to a gas station ready to fuel up on as much food as we could. Closed. We rode to another gas station. Closed. The only place that was still opened in town was a bar, “The Filling Station.” They closed the kitchen 30 minutes before we arrived so we ate the free popcorn and bought some bags of chips. The cook noticed how we were shoveling the popcorn and offered to make us a sandwich. That was a godsend. We would’ve gone to bed very hungry. Somehow that turkey sandwich tasted just as good as the steak we ate earlier. We thanked the waitress and the cook and made the chilly ride to a National Forest campground for the night. We talked about getting an early start tomorrow, but I think our first priority will be to eat as much breakfast as we can stomach. 


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