Day 3: Helena

Well, I was sitting in my hotel room last night on the bed with 3 pillows propped up behind me and an ice bag on my shin, watching nick at night, thinking gee, what a shame I can’t do this again tomorrow, when I thought, “wait a minute – why can’t I do this again tomorrow?” I looked over the maps and concluded that even if I don’t ride today, I have more than enough days to get where I want to go. And there’s seriously nothing to do in any of the towns I’ll be going through for the next few days. So I decided to kick back in Helena today. Going to hit the grocery store, go to the library and try to upload the pics from my camera, walk the historic district, maybe visit the Capitol building.

And watch more TV!

Update : I was using Google maps to navigate a route to radio shack by bike, and when the biking layer appeared, lo and behold, there are miles of singletrack just west of downtown in Mt Helena park. Well, I couldn’t be this close to the famous Helena trail system with an entire day to kill and not try them! So I googled em up and decided to go up the Prairie trail and down the Backside trail. Prairie Trail was nice:DSC01317

Backside Trail was a BIG mistake! The trail descriptions use words like “meadow” when they mean “rockpile”. I kid you not, this is actually part of the trail:DSC01319

The trail descriptions were obviously written by hikers, not bikers. When I got back, I zipped down to the bike shop to see if I could replace a bent fork cage (yesterday’s crash apparently), and the guy said I picked the loosest, rockiest trail in Helena! He then proceeded to show me where I should have gone riding. I was tempted to go back out there – it was only about 11am after all – but this is supposed to be a rest day.

Went to radio shack to look for an eye-fi card for my camera but those doofuses didn’t even know what I was talking about. The people at the Verizon store at least knew what it was but all they could do was suggest that I go to Walmart. I didn’t want to ride all over Helena so I just went grocery shopping. Then I rode over to the state Capitol and ate my lunch at a picnic table across the street. The Capitol is an incredibly beautiful building. I’d been there years ago but I was impressed all over again.

I’m at the library right now uploading all the pics that I took with my camera. From now on I guess I’ll take every picture twice, once with my phone (for uploading here) and once with my camera for a better image to look at when I’m in my golden years. 🙂 Go back and look at the previous posts to see these pics.

Tomorrow: Lincoln!  I pinky swear it! I’m going to be completely packed and ready to go tonight and in the morning I’m going to eat breakfast and go. Hopefully I’ll be on the road by 7:30am.

In retrospect, I made several mistakes yesterday that I won’t repeat. I didn’t eat enough, I left too late, and I brought too much water. I have a 4 liter water bladder (thats 9 pounds) that I nearly filled. At the end of the ride I still had 2 liters in it. Thing is, there’s a creek alongside every mountain road, and I have two kinds of water purification with me. So carrying that much water is just plain dumb!

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