Three states in three days. Utah-Idaho-Wyoming. It’s beautiful country up here. We are struck by how green everything is. Water is everywhere. Everyday we ride along lakes, reservoirs, rivers, teeming with water. Quite the contrast to our early days. Our route has intersected the Oregon Trail, a 2000 mile historic east-west wagon route that connected the Missouri River to Oregon, used in the early to mid 1800s before the railroad was completed.
It’s easy for me to become lost in the beauty of this landscape, with the luxury of smooth pavement to roll over. I ponder over what the pioneers saw as they passed through. Did they see the same wonder, or just another river crossing or mountain pass.
We’re staying at a Forest Service campground tonight, in the Bridger National Forest. There is a river about 30 feet from our tent that will lull us to sleep. After a dinner of rotisserie chicken, I rinse off in the river. It’s frigid cold, the kind of cold that makes your ankles hurt. But I so appreciate having a river to rinse off the salt and grit from the day. Otherwise, our skin has a gross sticky feeling from a mix of sunscreen, sweat and dirt. This feeling is especially apparent where skin touches skin, like backs of knees, fronts of elbows. I find it particularly unpleasant while trying to fall asleep and various body parts feel like they are covered in double sided tape. This stickiness is so unappealing that I have yet to encounter water too cold to get in, and we’re in snowmelt.
The downside to all this water and greenery are the MOSQUITOS that come out in droves at night and send us diving into our tent.