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Day 21- Missoula

Headed for Missoula today! Short ride, only 375 miles or so, and with Montana's higher speed limits it should go pretty quickly. PLUS, it is a very scenic ride. Gonna see Craig and Lydia tonight!

Leaving out of Red Lodge, we stopped at Bone Daddys and got a little gift for each DK Team Member.








​​​​​​​Eating up some miles at Montana speeds...








...which is good, cause there are LOOOONG straight stretches.








On the 90 now, 6th gear, cruise set at 80 mph, pretty good headwind, poor mpg. lol









We've seen rain clouds here and there all morning, but we've only had a few sprinkles, and we're enjoying the open road and the views!










But that is coming to an end...can't avoid the rain anymore. Our route is going to take us directly into that dark mass of a storm off to the left, so....









...it's rain suit time! Topped off the tank while we were stopped anyway.

btw, I have been doing a good job this trip on not getting low on fuel...and I sort of like it. No more pre-occupation when getting low on if we are going to make it to the next station. Now that I'm enjoying this new way, sorta makes me wonder what I was thinking for the last 3+ decades of always getting close to empty before filling up!









Headed straight into it. It rained pretty hard on us for a bit...but Mary had the camera tucked away, out of the rain.









After it cleared up a bit, out came the camera again.








You can see by the road that it rained here not long ago, but it's blue skies and white clouds now.





Today is turning into a great....









...cloud picture day. The contrast of the blue, white and green can be stunning...add to that a fun road!









Those harmless looking white clouds are behind us now...looking like more rain ahead!









Mary in the mirror...this round it was rain and hail...









...for awhile we've been riding in and out of rain and hail, and the temp has dropped to 51 degrees.









A look back at what we just rode thru.









Starting up Homestake Pass...








...this is a fun road...lots of curves up one side and then down the other. Never ridden it in the rain before.









Before long the temp has dropped to 42, and it's getting foggy and misting.









Now this is different...cold, wet, but not really raining, and the fog is getting thicker. Electric Gear is ON. Mary in the Mirror.






We never expected this. Rain-Yes, Hail-Yes, but icing up? Nope!









And the temp dropped even further...36 degrees and snow is starting to fly...








...and not just a little snow....but very heavy.

BTW, the camera sees better than I do...it was much less visibility while riding than these photo's are showing.








Big snow flakes! While it was sticking to the bike, it was not sticking to the road. I put my flashers on, and traveled at a speed that seemed safe, which was pretty much with the flow of traffic....only passed a few cars, and only a few folks passed me.








As you can see the snow built up pretty thick on the windshield, so I kept wiping the top clean so I could see. I tried looking over and to the side of the windshield, but then the snow/ice just built up on my helmet.








Finally coming down the pass, and out of the snow. Seemed like a long time, but was only about 15 minutes.









When we got to the bottom...








...even though we'd been out of the snow for 10+ minutes, there was still quite a bit of snow/ice-everywhere!









So thick on the headlight you could barely tell it was on.









Back rolling again...Missoula next stop!





Chomping down the miles at 80 mph toward Missoula...








It's some beautiful countryside we're riding thru.










It's actually quite windy, mostly cross-wind. At 80 mph with the wind, the MPG is quite low, and I would not be comfortable going any faster.









Besides being scenic, it is quite a fun road to ride.










Photo taken at 80 MPH off to the right of the road. Fantastic views, most everywhere you look.









As we get closer to Missoula, looking like more rain!









Yep, rain is just starting here...camera got tucked aware for the downpour of rain, with some hail mixed in.









Came out the other side to a beautiful blue sky, just outside of Missoula.









We're here! All that stuff came out of the TG. We'll be here for a few days...










...visiting Craig and Lydia. Here's grandpa with Lydia.