Wednesday, 22 August 2018

Yellowstone Ride Part 5 - Idaho Falls to West Yellowstone - 350 km

View from the rest stop on Highway 26
We started off with what we would soon find out was a typical Super 8 Motel breakfast. There were a variety of items but we would go for the English muffin (toasted, of course), a strange yellowish disc of egg or egg-like substance, sausages - either a greasy, gristly sausage disc or actual sausages, and a piece of super-processed cheese. This way, we could make fake Egg McMuffins which paled in comparison to what McDonald's had to offer - but breakfast was included!

Highway 26 view.

Highway 26 (ala Swan Valley Highway) had some great views!
We took secondary highways as much as we could. First we were on Highway 26 which was good and  featured one of the best highway washrooms (restrooms) that we saw on the trip.

Day 5 route
Next was highway 32. This was a great highway and we really enjoyed the scenery. Unfortunately we didn't think to take any photos in that part.

Not to be outdone, highway 22 was absolutely fantastic - scenic and twisty all the way to Wyoming! I'm not exactly sure when we entered Wyoming, but the photo above, taken just outside of Wilson, is in Wyoming.

After we paid for our pass (annual pass for two - good for all National Parks - $80), the guy at the booth told us that there was some road work for 'a ways'. After a km or so, we then rode along mile after mile of basically dirt and gravel road! It was not a pleasant experience!

Grand Teton National Park (outside Moose, Wy)
We had gone to Idaho Falls the previous day so we could just head east into Wyoming .Our plan was to go up through Grand Teton Park, which we did, and then work our way towards West Yellowstone.

Wyoming selfie.

This was definitely a scenery ride - we didn't really stop a lot. It was also very hot.  And, thus, we considered, yet again, our second questionable decision. We decided, after a brief consult, to actually ride, for the first time in our lives, without helmets!

Off goes the Schulberth German helmet, on goes the Cabela's hat.

Dave makes yet another questionable decision
I guess we went maximum 50 kmh on the road for about 25 minutes and felt guilty the whole time. It was kind of nice to have that coolness on my head but I was very leery of what would happen if I had an accident. To paraphrase Dale, we made a pact that if one of us fell off the bike and became a vegetable, the other had to look after him because our wives would never forgive us for going helmetless.

Jenny Lake
We did one little walk around Jenny Lake. It was a very pretty lake and the walk around it was greatly appreciated by our stiff joints.

Grand Teton panorama
The thing with Grand Teton is, like the Canadian parks in the Rockies, it ran right into Yellowstone. Our pass, of course, was good for it as well so we continued to motor on in what was becoming a very busy day!

Such beautiful scenes! And wonderful nature!

I stopped (and lost Dale for about 20 minutes) when I decided to take a photo of the Continental Divide. Fret not! If you miss this one, the highway crosses the continental divide at least two more times!

Crazy busy parking lot at Old Faithful

We finally worked our way to where all the crowds were, Old Faithful.

You need to realize that I have never been to Old Faithful before. Dale said it was no big deal but I still wanted to see it. And for me, it was a big deal!

I was impressed by how high the geyser went and the predictability of it. And I was also impressed that people didn't rush at it and try to do something stupid. 

Speaking of stupid, while riding along the road, there were a bunch of cars pulled over. I asked what was going on to a woman who was standing with one kid in her arms and another holding her hand. She answered back "It's a bear and two cubs!" and proceeded to walk towards the forest, kids in tow. Unbelievable!

Our final treat that the park had to offer was a bison on the side of the road.  I was ready to roar up on the opposite lane but there was no need. He (?) just walked along the side of the road and didn't give me or the other cars in front of me much attention at all. 


We ended up in a old motel in West Yellowstone and we were exhausted! Luckily, there was a McDonalds' so we went for a simple burger meal, watched a little TV in the room, and slept soundly, in anticipation of our next day which was to be a park day. 

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