Father and Son US Roadtrip 2013 on BMW K1200LT

Discussion in 'Global Trip Reports' started by TonyBKK, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Good morning from Pine Flats campground, Boise National Forest, Idaho!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_001.

    From Pine Flats we enjoyed a brief whack east on the Banks Lowman road-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_018.

    The Banks Lowman road ends at the junction with the Ponderosa Pine Scenic Route 21. We hang a left and ride east in the direction of Stanley-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_019.

    Another beautiful road!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_020.

    We hadn't had much of a breakfast yet so stopped at the first restaurant we came across at the Haven Hot Springs resort for an early lunch-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_010.

    A unique and quirky little greasy spoon with friendly gun nut owners and more hummingbirds than I've ever seen!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_022.

    Talking to the owner she said they've had these hummingbird feeders up for some 17 or 18 years and as a result the area surrounding the restaurant is thick with beautiful little hummingbirds!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_026.

    PineFlatsToSalmon_009.

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    "My President is Charlton Heston" :lol-sign: Yeah, we won't be talking politics here! :lol:
    PineFlatsToSalmon_024.

    Kristhawee is tickled pink by the hundreds of hummingbirds buzzing around-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_025.

    Lunch is served! DinnerGif
    PineFlatsToSalmon_028.
     
  2. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    As we were getting ready to leave the Haven Hot Springs a big group of Porches pulled in- a club from Boise out for a drive-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_113.

    We continued north-east on the Ponderosa Pine Scenic Route 21-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_029.

    From Boise National Forest we enter the Challis National Forest-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_032.

    So many campgrounds along this route!
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    Sawtooth National Recreation Area-
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    Cruisin' :happy3:
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    Some impressive mountains off to the south-
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    PineFlatsToSalmon_038.

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    Welcome to Stanley, Idaho, population 63! :mrgreen:
    PineFlatsToSalmon_041.

    We motor on, following the Salmon River in the direction of Challis-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_042.

    Yet another fantastic motorcycle road!
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    PineFlatsToSalmon_046.

    PineFlatsToSalmon_049.

    Green valleys, brown hills, dilapidated buildings-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_053.

    Abandoned service station-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_054.

    Smokey the Bear tells us the fire danger is only moderate here, yet they are fighting a big fire nearby...
    PineFlatsToSalmon_055.

    US Dept of Ag. Yankee Fork Work Center. Wonder what they do here?
    PineFlatsToSalmon_056.

    What a gorgeous day!!
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    PineFlatsToSalmon_058.

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    Crossing the Salmon River-
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    Zoomin'!
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    Clayton, Idaho- population 7!!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_063.

    Now we're riding north on the Salmon River Scenic Byway 75-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_064.

    A cool old single lane bridge across the Salmon River-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_065.

    79 miles to Salmon, Idaho!
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    Hmmm, clouds are getting thicker- looks like we might get wet...
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    Rain off in the distance-
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    Here's a sign you don't see every day- Caution- Bighorn Sheep on Highway!
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    I tell Kristhawee to keep his eyes open for bighorn sheep-
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    By sheer luck we're still dry-
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    Wow these are some rugged mountains!
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    The Salmon River Scenic Byway 75 ends at a T-junction with highway 93. The sky to the west is dark and threatening. We stop here for fuel and some food and to assess the weather and our route-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_082.

    It looks like the storm clouds have passed. As we're getting ready to hit the road a group of guys pulls in on an interesting mix of bikes- Ducati Multistrada, Honda VFR, Suzuki V-Strom, and there was a BMW in the group too-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_011.

    They're really friendly, it turns out we're all riding in the direction of Salmon and they don't mind at all if we tag along :)
    PineFlatsToSalmon_012.
     
  3. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Let's hit the road with our new friends and push on to Salmon, Idaho! Riding north on the Salmon River Scenic Byway 93-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_084.

    What a name for a service station! :lol-sign:
    PineFlatsToSalmon_083.

    Idaho 93 is yet another fantastic motorcycle road!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_087.

    We may have exceeded the speed limit a bit on this stretch :mrgreen:
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    This road takes us through some seriously rugged country!
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    Signs like this mean good times ahead! :thumbup:
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    Zoomin'!
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    An interesting junkyard full of antique tractors-
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    Continuing north on highway 93-
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    Storm clouds all around but we never got wet!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_101.

    Woohoo! We've reached Salmon, Idaho!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_114.
     
  4. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Salmon, Idaho is a trippy little western town- the Owl Club's owl has been peppered with arrows-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_110.

    Had to stop and get another shot of the owl-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_112.

    Riding down Main Street-
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    Lots of deer wandering about- here's a doe and her fawn-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_111.

    Didn't see any beemers, but plenty of hogs-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_109.

    Thought about camping at the Lemhi Hole but it was deserted, there were no facilities and I imagined it could be a bit creepy there after dark... PineFlatsToSalmon_103.

    While we were there Kristhawee was able to connect with his mom on Skype-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_106.
    Can you see the three large juvenile birds in the nest behind Kristhawee? Not sure what they were. Every time we'd get close they hunker down and hide so never got a very good look at them...

    And we checked out the Lehmi Hole fish ladder-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_104.

    A large nest with some eagles or hawks?
    PineFlatsToSalmon_102.

    Did a quick search and discovered a nearby full service campground that was perfect- http://www.century2campground.com/
    PineFlatsToSalmon_002.
    You can't see it, but this big oak tree is covered in giant cicadas which my son enjoyed catching and playing with :)

    Century Campground, immaculate grounds, a friendly, if a bit quirky owner, right on the Salmon River, hot showers and laundry- what more could you ask for? :mrgreen:
    PineFlatsToSalmon_005.

    PineFlatsToSalmon_006.

    I wasn't in the mood to cook so we went in to town and treated ourselves to an excellent meal at a Mexican joint right on the river- Fiesta En Jalisco
    logo_fiests3.png
    PineFlatsToSalmon_014.

    Quite decent food, a bit pricey, but what the heck, we deserve to treat ourselves from time to time, don't you agree Kristhawee?
    PineFlatsToSalmon_115.

    Grand Teaton Brewing makes some mighty fine ales! Cheers! beerchug
    PineFlatsToSalmon_003.

    After dinner we rode back to the campground and decided to do a little fishing in the Salmon River before bed-
    PineFlatsToSalmon_015.

    Tomorrow we ride to Wyoming and Yellowstone National Park!! :thumbup:
     
  5. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Good morning from Salmon, Idaho! Found a good breakfast spot in town DinnerGif
    PineFlatsToSalmon_004.
    Pancakes and eggs for my little guy- man he can eat!
    PineFlatsToSalmon_016.

    Overcast and a good chance of rain and thunderstorms today. Oh well, our Tourmaster riding jackets are pretty waterproofed when you close all the vents and we've got rain pants as well.
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_001.
    We head out of town on Idaho 28 in the direction of Leadore.

    We are following the Lewis and Clark and the Nez Perce Trails-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_002.

    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_003.

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    Takes more than grey skies to dampen our spirits! ;)
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_005.

    Sacajawea Historic Byway, Idaho 28:
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_006.

    Sacajawea, an "Agaidika" Shoshone woman born around 1788, is known around the world as a trusted and valuable member of the famed Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery. A lesser-known fact, however, is her historical tie to Idaho's Lemhi Valley where she was born and raised until the age of twelve. Captured by the Arikira Indians and forced to live among them in the Mandan Villages of North Dakota, Sacajawea would not see her home again until becoming part of the Corps of Discovery in 1805. It was during this expedition that she would help Lewis and Clark find the Salmon River and revisit her people.
    Source: http://www.visitidaho.org/scenic-byways/sacajawea-historic-byway/

    A bit of rain, but that massive screen on the Land Yacht does a good job of protecting us from the elements :happy3:
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_007.

    We make good time to the tiny town of Leadore, population 105!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_008.

    It looked like we could hang a left at Leadore and ride east over the mountains to Interstate 15 in Montana-
    Hwy29EastFromLeadoreIdahoToI15Map.

    Once again we're on the Nez Perce Trail.
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_010.
    A heartbreaking story accompanies this trail...

    The Nez Perce National Historic Trail follows the route taken by a large band of the Nez Perce Indian tribe in 1877 during their attempt to flee the U.S. Cavalry and get to Canada, to avoid being forced on to a reservation.

    A band of 750 Nez Perce warriors accompanied women, children and elders; the entire band numbered more than 2900. They were not under any treaty with the U.S. Government, and fought numerous engagements with the 7th Cavalry during their attempt to reach Canada and escape being forced into an Indian Reservation. Beginning near Wallowa Lake in eastern Oregon, the Nez Perce headed east into Idaho. They crossed Lolo Pass into Montana and fought a major battle at what is now known as Big Hole National Battlefield. After that, the Nez Perce continued traveling south and east, back into Idaho and then into Wyoming entering Yellowstone National Park near West Yellowstone, Montana. The tribe left the park crossing Sylvan Pass and followed the Clarks Fork River back into Montana. From there the Nez Perce headed almost straight north for Canada and almost made it. The Nez Perce were near starvation and exhaustion after fighting their last battle north of the Bear Paw Mountains, less than 40 miles (64 km) from the Canadian border, when they surrendered to U.S. authorities. Chief Joseph is widely credited with leading the Nez Perce on this journey. He served as a camp supervisor and guardian, who was entrusted with handling the logistics of camp and travel, and taking care of the women and children.[1]
    At the time of the surrender, Chief Joseph was the most prominent surviving leader among the group; he decided it was time to surrender. A few members of the tribe did reach Canada, but the vast majority were relocated to Kansas and Oklahoma for eight years before being allowed to relocate to the reservation in Idaho, near their ancestral home.
    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nez_Perce_National_Historic_Trail

    Route 29, aka as Railroad Canyon Road climbs up the canyon that divides Goat Mountain to the north and Elk Mountain to the south-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_011.

    Just as you're getting into the mountains the pavement ends! :oops: Oh dear, this is a problem I've noticed when route planning with Google Maps and Apple Maps (TomTom)- neither map gives any indication of what types of roads to expect... It was some 50 miles to Interstate 15 and I didn't want to risk that distance on dirt with the Land Yacht, especially with the possibility of rain, so we made a U-turn and headed back down to Leadore-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_012.

    Idaho 29 is better suited to a dualsport than a K1200LT! We continue southeast on Idaho 28-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_013.

    Continuing south on Idaho 28 the clouds are getting thicker, rain in the distance...
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_014.

    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_015.

    Yeah, we're gonna get wet :mrgreen:
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_016.

    I didn't mind getting rained on, but what surprised me was how cold it got!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_017.
    The heated grips and seats on the Land Yacht took the edge of though :happy3:

    Push through the rain to find dry riding on the other side-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_018.

    Kristhawee got a bit damp, but he's a tough kid and game to press on :mrgreen:
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_020.

    Idaho 28 follows a wide valley with mountains on both sides. I think this is Scott Peak off to the left-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_021.

    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_022.

    A right on Idaho 22 will take us to Craters of the Moon National Monument, but that will have to wait for a future trip. We're both excited to revisit Yellowstone National Park!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_023.

    We hang a left and ride east to Dubois on Idaho 22-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_024.

    31 miles to Dubois, Idaho!
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    Cruising east on Idaho 22- Straight as an arrow!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_027.

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    There's a big service station just off the I15 in Dubois where we stop for food and fuel and after lunch it looks like Kristhawee takes a power nap on a pile of firewood :mrgreen:
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_029.

    But off to the west the sky is looking dark and threatening and the weather is headed our way- best we press on before that storm catches up with us!
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    We ride east from Dubois on Clark County A-2
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_031.

    This road is completely deserted and I whack it to try and stay ahead of the storm clouds that are trying to flank us-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_032.

    No place to take shelter out here! Hopefully we can outrun the storm!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_034.

    Black skies and lightening behind us!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_035.

    Slow down... No, sorry, I don't think so :happy3:
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_036.

    As we continue east we pass some farms and ranches-
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_037.
    Those mountains off in the distance mark the border between Idaho and Montana.

    Doh! I did it again! Once again we're on dirt! hscratch2 Kristhawee looks rather amused... ;)
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_038.

    We ask some cows for directions and are rather surprised that they answer :mrgreen:
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    Well, we're too far along to turn around now. Better to press on!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_040.

    Thankfully the dirt doesn't go on for too long. I'm happy to see pavement again!
    SalmonIdahoToWestYellowstoneWyoming_041.

    We rode on to West Yellowstone, Montana, the western gateway to Yellowstone National Park!
    LeadoreIdahoToWestYellowstoneViaDuboisMap.
     
  6. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Welcome to Yellowstone National Park!
    YellowstoneJuly27th_001.

    Kristhawee and I are both very excited to revisit Yellowstone! Who's going to spot the first wildlife?
    YellowstoneJuly27th_002.

    Bison!!
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    It's late in the day and most campgrounds are full, but the Ranger at the West Yellowstone entrance told us there were still some spots available at the Pebble Creek Campground, which is at the far northeast corner of the park:
    Tower-Roosevelt-to-Northeast-Entrance-Route-Map.
    If Pebble Creek is full there are a bunch of National Forest Campgrounds just outside the part on the fabulous Beartooth Highway. Let's go! :happy3:

    On the dirt road to the Pebble Creek Campground we spotted a Black bear!
    YellowstoneJuly27th_005.

    Apparently this young black bear has been hanging around Pebble Creek a lot and the rangers are trying to scare him off-
    YellowstoneJuly27th_006.

    Sadly, if a bear loses its fear of humans they can become a nuisance and a danger and may have to be put down... Hope this guy will make it!
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    This bear did not seem terribly frightened of the ranger...
    YellowstoneJuly27th_008.

    But eventually he did wander off...
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    Well, as I suspected, Pebble Creek was full, but some super nice folks invited us to share their spot. Kristhawee was super happy to discover their son Luca was his age and they hit it off right away-
    YellowstoneJuly27th_012.
    Can't remember the little girl's name but she was glued to her book the entire time.

    We were rewarded with an absolutely stunning sunset that evening!
    YellowstoneJuly27th_014.

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    Wow!
    YellowstoneJuly27th_015.

    A nice background for dinner, eh? DinnerGif
    YellowstoneJuly27th_017.

    Good night!! clap.gif
     
  7. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Good morning from Pebble Creek Campground, Yellowstone National Park!
    YellowstoneJuly28th_012.

    Wow, it got cold last night, and it was quite chilly in the morning as well! Kristhawee and Luca hanging out next to the dew-covered Land Yacht :mrgreen:
    YellowstoneJuly28th_011.

    Kristhawee went off to explore Pebble Creek-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_013.

    Lots of cute ground squirrels running about-
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    Have fun little guy, but don't fall in!
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    I was so grateful to our hosts for letting us share their campsite, but didn't want to wear out our welcome, so wandered about and found an awesome spot that had just been vacated- Pebble Creek campsite 22 is a peach!
    YellowstoneJuly28th_017.

    We set up in our new site, saddled up, and hit the road!
    YellowstoneJuly28th_019.
     
  8. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Good morning from Pebble Creek Campground in Yellowstone National Park! Today we're going to ride to Mammoth Hotsprings and pick up a Junior Ranger workbook from the Visitor Center. It's a beautiful day! :thumbup:
    YellowstoneJuly28th_021.

    We ride west through the Lamar Valley-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_022.

    The roads are in good repair and traffic is surprisingly light-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_023.

    Holy smokes! What is that brown animal on the yonder hill? Could it be??
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    A Grizzly Bear!!
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    Looks like a young one, not that I've ever seen a Grizzly Bear in the wild. Magnificent!!
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    YellowstoneJuly28th_028.

    Kristhawee and I were both so excited to have seen a Grizzly in the wild! Memories I'll never forget! A little further on we saw a beautiful red fox saunter casually across the road in front of us and then stop on the shoulder to watch us ride by. I guess with no hunting in the park these animals aren't so shy of humans. Motoring on-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_029.

    Majestic Yellowstone!
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    Off in the distance- Mammoth Hot Springs!
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    Welcome to Mammoth Hot Springs! The place was packed, but no matter how dickish the parking, we always find a spot to squeeze in the Land Yacht ;)
    YellowstoneJuly28th_035.

    Mammoth Hotsprings has a really cool National Park Visitor Center. What kid doesn't like a sign that says "PLEASE TOUCH" :mrgreen:
    YellowstoneJuly28th_034.

    A seriously pissed looking Mountain Lion... Guess I'd be pissed too if someone stuffed me and put me behind glass ;)
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    Bighorn sheep-
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    Beaver!
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    Time for lunch! There's a big general store in Mammoth Hotsprings where we picked up some beverages and picnic supplies-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_007.
    Man that Grand Teton Brewing Co. Sweetgrass American Pale Ale is good stuff!!

    Bonne Appetit!
    YellowstoneJuly28th_005.
     
  9. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    After lunch and a fun time romping around playing tag with a really nice family with a gaggle of kids Kristhawee was keen to go fishing, and the Ranger at the Visitor Center recommended a nearby spot. Let's go!
    YellowstoneJuly28th_037.

    I'm forgotten the name of this little lake, but it's a beautiful spot and to get to it you have to ride through the Mammoth Hot Springs maintenance area and employee housing, and it was kind of cool to see all the huge winter snow removal trucks and tractors sitting out in the warm sun.
    YellowstoneJuly28th_036.

    We worked our way around the lake and could see a lot of trout, but as usual, they mocked us and weren't interested in any of the lures we threw at them...
    YellowstoneJuly28th_038.

    Fish or no fish, I'm just happy to be outdoors with my boy and I think he feels the same :)
    YellowstoneJuly28th_039.

    We get a bit of rain, but nothing serious, and finally we admit defeat to the trout and get ready to head back to camp where perhaps we might have better luck in Pebble Creek.
    YellowstoneJuly28th_040.

    Bye bye gorgeous little lake and clever little fish! :mrgreen:
    YellowstoneJuly28th_041.

    Riding east to Pebble Creek the sky is stormy and there are spots of wet on the road, but somehow we manage to dodge the weather and make it back dry-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_044.

    YellowstoneJuly28th_045.

    The dirt road to the Pebble Creek Campground is in pretty good shape, but there are some steep bits that would not be fun in the wet on the big Land Yacht!
    YellowstoneJuly28th_048.

    I wonder if we'll see that cute Black Bear again today?
    YellowstoneJuly28th_049.

    Home Sweet Home :mrgreen:
    YellowstoneJuly28th_050.
     
  10. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Back at the Pebble Creek Campground Kristhawee was keen to have another go at the elusive trout-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_051.

    He was happy to see his friend Luca again and the two of them had a good time fishing together-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_053.

    Trout are seriously finnicky fish!!! We could see them and we threw all kinds of flies and lures at them, but just couldn't get them to bite... As the sun dropped the temperature quickly dropped, and the creek itself is very cold, but Kristhawee didn't seem to mind :)
    YellowstoneJuly28th_055.

    Even after Luca gave up Kristhawee kept at it- Points for effort! :thumbup:
    YellowstoneJuly28th_057.

    He kind of fell in and soaked his jacket, but still kept on fishing!
    YellowstoneJuly28th_058.

    Finally I convinced him to head back to camp. Along the way we discovered a robin nest-
    YellowstoneJuly28th_061.

    Almost the end of July- these guys better hurry up and hatch! I imagine summer ends early here...
    YellowstoneJuly28th_062.

    Back at camp we built a fire and I enjoyed a few beers while Kristhawee pretended to be drunk drunk
    YellowstoneJuly28th_063.

    Chilling with my boy at Pebble Creek Campground, Yellowstone National Park. Life is good! :mrgreen:
    YellowstoneJuly28th_064.
     
  11. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    My oh my how the time FLIES!!! My bags are packed and I'm headed to Swampy in a couple hours for the long journey to New York to see my beloved Kristhawee!

    Banging out these trip reports sure takes a long time! deal.gif We're only to Wyoming and I've run out of it! mwink.gif

    We enjoyed many more adventures last summer in Montana, South Dakota and Minnesota but I won't be able to share them until I return to Thailand in a few months.

    In the meantime I'm so looking forward to yet another epic summer riding with my boy! clap.gif

    This time I will pick him up in New York and we're going to explore Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont and upstate New York before whacking back to Minnesota to spend time with Grandma and friends.

    Maybe this summer I'll try to post as we ride, but I haven't figured out a good way to resize and host pictures while on the road...

    Happy Trails!
    BikeHappinessSign.
     
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