Day 62 – Glendive, MT to Circle, MT – 50 miles
We started the day by meeting Tim outside his motel room for breakfast. It was raining but seemed to let up at about 7. When we opened the door, Tim was riding his bike in the parking lot. Unfortunately Tim had a slow leak in his rear tire. He pumped it up, and it seemed to hold air, but we knew there were no services on route today so Tim took the time to change out the tube. While he was doing that, Jim noticed his seat post was loose (it had been moved during he repair in Medora) – easy fix until… SNAP! The seat post bolt broke. Looks like hopes for an early departure were dashed. Jim would just have to ride low rider style (seat as low as possible) until he could get to the hardware a mile away and get a new bolt.
On the way to the hardware we got breakfast at Taco John’s. Jim had talked up the breakfast burrito he had seen on a sign, so we decided to give it a try. The burrito wasn’t bad but the ambiance left much to be desired with an ornery guy working there and a host of dead flies on the window sill near our table. We made a quick meal of it & left.
Good fortune at the hardware store and Jim was riding high in the saddle again. Not much to report on today’s ride, it was straight – a few uphill slogs and some nice down hills, but lots of time in the saddle on flat ground and tailwinds. We saw a small herd of antelope today, including a doe with a pair of fawns! We are noticing the dry air of the area, and the temps are rising. Today we carried an extra water bottle with us. We never tapped into it, but it’s good to be ready.
We met more east bound bike riders today. One was a tandem team from Michigan! Loren Bach & Dave Martus are from Irons, MI & are riding a Bilenky Viewpoint tandem (recumbent in front, upright in back). Always good to get tips and tricks on the upcoming towns from riders who have just been there. You can check out their blog at: crosscountryviewpoint.blogspot.com
Jim had a good laugh when a young guy in a pickup seem to flip him off. He said the guy didn’t look mad, and had no reason to be upset, but if he has issues then so be it. We told the story to Tim, who always rides behind us, and he said the guy was giving us a “hang 10” sign! (Thumb and picky finger extended). I’m sure he was right, the guy didn’t have a look of disdain when he gave me the signal). Being from Sydney, Tim has spent some time with the surfer crowd, so he was more in tune to the gesture. Jim, not so much, and more likely to see the “other” gesture.
We got into Circle at about 1 pm & went right to lunch! Circle is a pretty sleepy town, we were told the hotel in town was not so good, so we are tenting at a city park. The only condition for camping is informing the Sheriff that you are doing so. Tim and Jim used a back entry to the sheriff office (because we saw a sherif car parked right in front of the door. When we asked if we could see the sheriff, the lady that worked there asked how we got in. I think she was a little surprised we had breeched security at the Circle Sheriff’s office. Not too tough to do when the back door is wide open!
We got to the park and saw they had a very nice city swimming pool. Shawn remembered hearing that you can pay to swim and get a shower. We went over to shower and the person working there seemed to think it wasn’t worth trouble to take our money for a shower, so free camping and free showers for us tonight! Walking back from the showers, Jim found out the hard way that we’re in cactus country! We spent a few minutes with the tweezers working on his feet! This is a very nice park and with the dry air and clear blue skies, we are going to sleep without the rain fly tonight. Pretty brave for us city kids!! Also, although Tim has bike packed (with camping gear) around a good part of the US (Santa Barbara to Minneapolis over the course of 4 trips), he confessed to us this is his first time sleeping in a tent since he was little! Every bike tour needs a crazy Aussie with them for entertainment!! He keeps things light & teases Shawn for stressing out about hooligans and the weather.