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Grandpa Lost His Mind
A Journal - Crossing America by Bicycle

May 12, 2007      Miles 50      Total miles 800


I met this nice couple this morning as I was doing some last second preventative maintenance on Ol' Blue. This is Greg and Mary Ellen Biebel from Boise, ID. They came up to Kooskia (pronounced Kooskee) so Greg could go turkey hunting. We had a nice visit and Greg showed me the trophy turkey he got this morning.
I don't know much about turkeys, except they sure compliment a Thanksgiving feast, but I do know this big boy would fill up your oven.

A couple of hours later, and twenty miles down the road, I was resting by the side of the road and eating a piece of beef jerky when the Biebel's pulled up beside me and we chatted for a couple more minutes before they left again.
I just turned onto Hwy 12 out of Kooskia when I say another of these nests. I decided to get a picture when the bird decided to come home. As I said, I have been told this is an Osprey.

I followed this river all day today. The road runs within a hundred feet of the river all along this beautiful and secluded road. There wasn't much traffic today except the occassional truck hauling rafts and kayaks for those who want to ride the whitewater. The higher the elevation, the faster the river runs. My campsite tonight is about 1,000' higher than Kooskia, so the water is very fast moving and pretty loud.
Here is my campsite for tonight and you can see the water in the river is roiling. I am staying at a site set up by the US Forest Service. It is primitive, with no facilities, but it is free. There hasn't been a manmade structure within twenty five miles from here.
Here are a couple of trolleys people have built to get to their houses on the other side of the river from the main road.

Hey! You guys in front don't worry about helping out. Just make sure you hold on to that beer!

I saw a lot of quackers today. It's a good thing Greg wasn't around! Ol' Blue fell in love with this mailbox.

There is a tiny store and a cafe, here in Lowell. There are no services for the next 66 miles from this point. I stocked up on essentials here and have ridden about twenty five miles from Lowell. My plan is to get up pretty early Sunday morning and start my ride. I will have to go forty miles for my breakfast. I am at an elevation of 2,000' here and will have to go over Lolo Pass within seventy five miles which is 5,235' high. I'll eat a big meal at about the half way point to Lolo Pass.
It would be interesting to know the story here. This huge stone has been here long enough that the tree has grown around it. I expect the river got up real high years ago and slammed the boulder into the tree.
All along the river there are little creeks that run into it plus there is water that falls from the sides of the mountains. You can barely see a waterfall in the middle of the picture on the right. A lot of the waterfalls may be a hundred or two hundred feet high and only two or three feet wide. You wouldn't notice them if you were whizzing by in a car.