Day 22 – Helena

7.14.2012
Start: Priest Pass (Divide crossing #4)
Finish: Helena, MT
Today’s miles: 15.6
Total miles: 627.3
Splats: 0
Divide crossings: 0
Wildlife:

Last night, as I set up my tent high on the divide line, it began to rain lightly. Just as I was about to doze off, the back of my eyelids lit up a bright blue soon followed by a clap of thunder. As the lightning became more frequent and closer in proximity, I became nervous. When my ear on the ground suddenly started ringing, I wasn’t sure if it was random or if it could be caused by a build up of charges in the ground. I wasn’t taking any chances. I got into something like what I remembered the ‘lighting strike position’ to be. I discovered, however, that my previously hurt ankle couldn’t support my weight in this position. I abandoned the defense and went to sleep.

Last night’s storm ended up not being that bad, but I did awake to rain in the morning. I packed up quickly and headed down the mountain. By the time I arrived in Helena, the rain ceased. I was super excited to find the farmers’ market. It reminded me of home. I bought peas and carrots, zucchini bread, and coffee. I consumed the bread and coffee immediately and continue to munch on the veggies.

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At 10:00 I wandered over to the Great Divide Cyclery and the accompanying service shop, The Garage. Chad replaced my brake with a new one which is very exciting to me. I can’t wait to have a reliably functioning brake again! I ended up spending most of my day rotating between the above mentioned bike shop, Big Sky Cyclery, where I picked up a pair of liner bike shorts to potentially replace my bibs, and The Base Camp, an outfitter where I searched for a new loose fitting shirt to replace my jersey. I also wandered the pedestrian mall and got myself a fish burrito from Taco Del Sol, as recommended by Ed on my Facebook page. It was, without doubt, the best burrito I’ve had.

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I’m staying at the Lamplighter hotel tonight and debating what to do tomorrow. I feel antsy to get back riding, but was up and about all day long. I need to sit down and figure out some logistics for the upcoming few weeks. Tomorrow’s post will likely be made from the Lamplighter as well.

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