Posted by: bikedave | July 1, 2010

June 30, 39 miles SW of Lolo Pass to Lolo Hot Springs, MT

I started early again today.  I intended to get through Lolo pass, 39 miles away, before the temperature was very high.

Unlike the night before, the thunderstorms lasted well into the night, and the rain continued until early morning.  When I looked outside, soon after daylight, I saw clouds in the trees at the ridge lines.  I took a few pictures.  They don’t do justice to the beauty of the canyons in the morning, but still are pleasant to look at.

When I left the roads were beginning to dry out.

Looking back as I left in the morning

Today I will again ride upstream along the Lochsa River for the first 26 miles.

Lochsa River

I have passed three foot bridges over the river today.  They provide access for hikers to the wilderness south of the river.

Warm Springs foot bridge

Near Powell, ID, the road turns away from the river and begins a short climb.

My last view of the Lochsa River

After the climb, I passed a small lake.

Lake and mountain meadow near Powell, ID

Soon I was passed by Vicki in the motor home. I met up with her at the Devoto Memorial Cedar Grove.  There was a nice paved path on which we walked through the beautiful grove of cedars.

These trees can live for as long as 3,000 years

Leaving the cedar grove, the road follows Crooked Fork Creek upstream.

Crooked Fork Creek

After crossing the creek at Beaver Ridge Road, the real climb begins.  The grade was quite steep for the first half mile, but then backed off a little.  On the way up I saw two deer, and near the top I saw the tracks of a moose that had been running downhill in the mix of mud and gravel on the shoulder of the road.

Vicki was waiting at the visitors center at the top of the pass.  We had lunch together.  I then went inside to get a Montana highway map and found out that they had open wi-fi in the visitors center, so I uploaded yesterdays blog.

About 100 feet after leaving the center you reach the Montana border.

After four miles of steep downhill, the grade moderates for the run into Lolo Hot Springs.  Lolo creek can be seen next to the road.

Lolo Creek

About a mile before reaching Lolo Hot Springs, I saw a wide spot on a dirt side road that looked promising as a place to spend the night.  After checking it out, I continued on to Lolo Hot Springs, met Vicki, loaded up the bike and returned to the side road in the motor home.

Stopped for the night

The view out my window

Miles today: 47  total miles: 810

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