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Grandpa Lost His Mind
A Journal - Crossing America by Bicycle

May 19, 2007      Miles 72      Total miles 1169


I got on the road earlier than normal today. The weather forcast showed scattered thunderstorms for the afternoon. I wanted to make it to Virginia City which was a pretty easy 55 miles. The last five miles would be a climb but not a bad one. I wanted a good breakfast but opted to stop at a gas station and picked up two sausage and cheese bisquits. I bit into one and it was awful. It was just a bunch of gooey cheese with sausage mixed in it. The weather looked threatening so I bought a pair of rain pants. I had a pancho already.
Montana is fifth in the nation for sheep production. I haven't seen too many sheep but here are a bunch. The picture on the left also has a lot of goats and a llama. Those are cows in the background on that same photo.

I like going through some of these small towns. They are all unique in their own ways. The church on the left is a Catholic church in Laurin. It is a tiny town with maybe 50 people. The church was built in 1901. The church on the right is in Virginia City high on a hill in town. Virginia City has a population of 130.

I was having pretty good luck staying dry. I knew it was going to rain. I just didn't know when. Just before Alder, there was a bakery in a ladies house. It was out of town and she had all kinds of great things to eat. If I had known just how good her baking was I would have bought a lot of her products. While I was in her house, it started pouring buckets with very loud thunder. She said it would only last five or ten minutes and she was right. I waited out the rain with a cup of coffee and some apple fritters.
Near the town of Twin Bridges, I ran into Stefan Langhammer who is 24 and came from Germany to ride across America. He started in Washington, DC. We had a short visit because we were both trying to outrun the rain. I gave him the second bisquit which I bought for breakfast. I told him it was awful but he must have been hungry because he took it. Somewhere along his route, he broke the fork on his bike. Thanks to the internet he was able to locate one and have it shipped to him. He lost three days on that breakdown.
This is Bailey and she has been riding horses since before she could walk. The little horse is in the pasture next to hers.

I had a few pretty good downhill rides until I got about 25 miles from Virginia City. There was one stretch of road which was about five miles long and hundreds of yards wide with these huge stones. They are smooth like river rocks. One resident told me they go down 10 or 15 feet.

Nevada City is another tiny place. I don't know if anyone actually lives there. Here is a sampling of some of the many buildings in that town and also a description about how these houses were saved. The first couple of houses have always been there and weren't moved.

This is a pretty wild guess but I'm thinking this is a two story outhouse.
These kind of climbs wear me out. These were taken as I left Virginia City. This was about four miles long with no level spots anywhere. It took a long time to get to the top.

Then all the sweat and pain was worth it! These two pictures were taken about half way down.

This is where I am staying tonight pardner.