"You must be out of your minds!" says the guy at the gas station in
New Meadows, Idaho when we pull over on our bicycles. It is our 11th
day of riding; it has rained all day and it will rain the rest of the
day. Later, about ten kilometers before reaching Council, the back
rack in Tomi's bike breaks down; the plate that mounts it to the frame
Let's start from the beginning ...
Our plan was to ride in 21 days from Jackson
,Wyoming to the Pacific Ocean in Oregon somewhere around Lincoln
City or Pacific City, and then take a couple of days ride along the shore to
Portland to catch the Amtrak train back home to Indiana.
We made it from Jackson to
Florence, Oregon and then along the coastline to
in 22 days and in 2089 kilometers. Since we did not have time to ride to
Portland, we rented a car. Anyway, we made some changes to our planned
riding route all along, mostly following local advice.
This is how we rode.
The equipment list is here.
The descents and ascents calculated in the table below are between major
cities and mountain passes, and by no means reflect the total number
of meters climbed or descended during the day.
And then some anecdotes from our trip:
- We learned to hate RV's in this trip, especially those bus-size
RV's whose drivers do not have an idea what is the effect of their
monster vehicle on the lighter traffic, but pass bicycles hugging the
- Another issue is honking. I guess that people just try to be
nice, but receiving the loud sound and the air-flow caused by the
passing vehicle at the same time is not only annoying, it is also scary and
- Budweiser and Pepsi drinkers are the worst roadside litterbugs.
- All motel rooms we stayed in had a TV, but not everyone had an
antenna. I wonder what's the point of having the device if you can't
watch it. Most of the devices did not even look cool.
Western TV commercials do not correspond the reality, or the other
way around. I still think that it is the one of the best quality motel
or hotel chains for the price, but the hotels they advertise are not
those that one finds in small towns.
- In general, we observed that the room price does not correlate with
the location or quality of the motel.
- By the landscape, Idaho is
probably the most versatile and interesting state I've been in this country:
from mountainous pine forests in
the Grand Tetons side, to potato fields around Ashton, the seed potato
capital of the world; from the shrubby desert between St. Anthony and
Arco, to the Sun Valley ski area with mountain bike trails; and finally
from the spectacular gorge from Banner Summit to Lowman and Banks, to
Brownlee and Oxbow dams towards the Oregon border.
- Oregon's roads are not in good conditions and there is a lot of
glass on shoulders. Where there are shoulders, I mean.
Daily distances and riding times
||Riding time (h:min)
||Ascent(+)/ Descent(-) (m)
||Colter Bay Village, WY
||Colter Bay Village
||+376.4 / -77.7
||West Yellowstone, MT
||+343.8 / -669.3
||St. Anthony, ID
||+123.75 / -640.7
||+177.4 / -340.5
||+870.5 / -744
||+242.6 / -1192.7
||+594.4 / -100
||+77.7 / -634
||+638.6 / -725.7
||+313.9 / -71.6
||+568.2 / -976.9
||+841.3 / -618.1
||+724.8 / -566.3
||+678.2 / -1196.3
||+105.8 / -234.4