Saturday, August 16th – 17th
I stealth camp just inside Glacier NP on the 17th so I can get an early start through the park. I’m hoping to spend the day in the park and make it to Bozeman by the evening, a long day of sightseeing and riding.
Wildlife is everywhere. I saw deer all throughout the park, and at one abandoned hiking trailhead, a deer thought it was worth the danger of being close to me so he could eat some horse poo.
Since I’ve been stealth camping and riding a lot of miles the last few days, I haven’t had time to stay in touch with my family or friends, so I head out of Glacier in search of cell service. I pick up some about 30 minutes outside the park, and find a small road to go down to find a place to sit down and catch up with everyone. As I’m calling my brother, I see a movement in the woods… a deer? No… it’s like a giant cat… OHMY it’s a mountain lion. I hang up the phone and slowly pull my camera out of my tankbag and snap this picture.
Well, I can’t see the lion any more, and I start to get a bit nervous. With the glimpse I did have of the cat, it looked like it was stalking me, so I hop on the bike quickly and ride a few miles back down the road. I wanted to get a better picture, but didn’t want to end up getting attacked by a cat or 2.
I want to make it to Bozeman, MT tonight so I can stay with my friend from college, Dan. I’ve already stayed with Dan once this trip, and I want to be around some friends on my birthday. I ride a couple hours in the dark, which I always try to avoid doing. The experience is not fun, as the headlight on Oscar is very weak. I follow a car down the country roads the entire time. I take the opportunity to order a few new electronic connections to improve Oscar’s headlight, since I have access to a shipping address next week. While I don’t plan on riding at night at all as I make my way towards Panama, I need decent lighting for emergency night time riding or going through tunnels/caves.
The next few days in Bozeman are great. I relax, get all of my travel chores done, go out to some events on the town with Dan and his friends.
We spend a lot of time using a new toy Dan got called a Slackline. It’s a 3” wide strip of elastic that you tie between 2 points and jump on like a trampoline.
I leave Dan’s early on the 21st and make my way towards Yellowstone. While I was trying to avoid going on the weekend, I’ll just have to deal with the traffic and crowds.