75 miles, 3,081 total
This day made it into the top five as far as scenery and beauty. I started out in the flat plan of the Big Hole Valley, where I had the company of furry and feathered friends.
Before entering the Bitterroot Mountains, I stopped in at the Big Hole Battlefield National Monument, where in 1877 Federal troops attacked retreating Nez Perce indians, slaughtering over 80 in a pre-dawn advance. Many of those killed were women and children. Another sad example of our country’s early treatment of native Americans.
I then turned to climb into the Bitterroot Mountains. Quickly the landscape changed to pine forests and rushing streams.
The ride down the other side through the Bitterroot Mountains was spectacular! The drop was over 3,000 ft. and going the other direction would be an ordeal.
Came upon this bed and breakfast a little ways south of Darby and noticed the Hello Cyclists banner. Usually that means motorcyclists, but the logo of Adventure Cycling caught my attention. I turned in and found that the owner does cater to bikers, although the $80 rate was more than I wanted to pay. Turned out, too, that she and her husband owned the Jackson Hot Springs lodge for 18 years (where I stayed the night before). The bed and breakfast is very nice (hot tub and all)!
I slept in a little campground in Darby ($9/night!).