A Washington, Idaho, Montana, British Columbia bike adventure!

Well, folks: I’ve been back from my bike trip for a while now and have had about zero motivation to blog about it for some reason. But I DID make a map, cuz I am a giant map nerd. So if you’re curious about route, here’s what it was like:

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If you actually click on the “open in Caltopo” link in the top right, you can do more stuff with it, like click on an individual day to see how many miles it was and the elevation profile and stuff like that (which is all approximative, of course, since I’m recreating it after the fact rather than recording as I went.) It’s kind of a mess until you zoom in because of all my random notes, though you can also toggle those on and off if you follow the link.

No, I don’t actually know how many miles it was. Ha! That’s the first question people always ask me, and I don’t know. But you can add them up yourself if you’re curious;)

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(hearts for my bike in Nelson, B.C.)

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It was a pretty fantastic trip, despite my weird reluctance to write about it. (Maybe I just haven’t found the right way in?) It felt like getting back to my bikey roots, long enough of a trip — 18 full biking days, plus more time at the end for running — to have time to play with, to get away from the “itinerary” feeling and sink into the “I have time to travel and add side trips and figure out what I want to do as I go” feeling that I love so much.

Plus, there were a million crystal-clear lakes that I biked along for days (literally, I biked along Kootenay Lake for at least three days; it’s huge!), with lots of requisite swimming — both clothed or not, depending on how many other people were likely to be around;)

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(Kootenay Lake, I think the second day I was on it, from near where I camped)

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I took two backpacking trips along the way, one in Valhalla Provincial Park in BC and one to Upper Priest Lake in Idaho, both of which were lovely changes in pace and a chance to slow down even more. I saw an amazing lightning storm from my tent. I ate a lot of farmer’s market vegetables. I met some great people and visited a lot of sweet public libraries (which is how I figure out maps, since I don’t have it on my phone).

I also saw a lot of great murals:

(also in Nelson, BC)

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And biked on some fantastic and totally car-free rails-trails in Canada (though many of them were a wee bit rugged for my bike):

(The Slocan Valley Rail Trail, though, was pretty much perfect in every way;)

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And at the end of it all, I went for a really long run with a friend who went for an even longer run, all of which ended in the fantastic hot pool at Burgdorf Hot Springs.

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(approximately 12 (for me) or 31 (for him) hours into a really long run;)

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(but a pretty sweet spot to swim afterwards!)

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It was a really nice few weeks:) Even though I haven’t been psyched to write about it. Maybe sometimes it’s better just experienced, and then shared in person, slowly, through random stories as they bubble up?

6 Comments:

  1. Glad you posted! Looks like a fun trip. I really need to do a two week or so tour soon, hopefully next year. I’m thinking Eastern Oregon in September. I really want to do a bunch of stuff out there, so two weeks would be a good timeframe. And hopefully September will have good weather!

  2. YAY! I’m glad you got to Burgdorf! We love it up there. My favorite was the time we took our book club up there (stayed in a nearby yurt) and then soaked, ate snacks and wine, and talked about Gloria Steinem for a couple hours. Ahh…

    • Awww Ariel. This is why you’re my favorite:) And to the trail question, I’m not 100% sure — I’m not sure where Lick Creek Summit is. There’s a super user-unfriendly map of the race on their website, http://imtuf100.com/ if you want to check-check it. I’m sure you know those trails waaaaaay better than I do:)

      I miss you, Ariel!!

      • Oh cool! Yes, we’ve hiked many parts of this over the years. <3 It's a pretty area. "Our" yurt that our book club likes to go to is over by Duck Lake. We've backpacked out to Loon Lake, and done some great day hikes over by Snowslide, etc. We were just up in that general area last weekend for a little mini-adventure weekend. Though, we stayed in an AirBNB and didn't do anything too crazy adventurous. :)
        I miss your face, too!!

  3. Oh yeah – did you do the trail from Lick Creek Summit over to Burgdorf-ish? Or, what trail was your run on?

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