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-   -   2-Up to Yellowstone (http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=864772)

TigerMike 02-20-2013 05:29 PM

2-Up to Yellowstone
 
Hi all,

New member here - I've done a lot of reading in your forum and finally joined. I decided I would post about a ride I did last May (a while ago I know) to get the ball rolling for me. After reading many ride reports, I hope I don't bore anyone to death.

I wanted to take my fiance somewhere on the bike, but since she was new to it, we didn't want to do anything crazy. Our trip was set to be about a week from Minneapolis to Yellowstone National Park and back. I spent the months prior to the trip acquiring gear that would help on our journey.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...e/IMG_0898.jpg

I must admit, I hadn't taken a trip of this length yet either as I was used to riding sportbikes mainly for the past 10 years. I had gone on long Saturday and Sunday rides with friends, but this trip would be the beginning of new adventures for me, straying far away from home.


Day 1:
We set off right after rush hour. Heading south from Minneapolis towards Mankato and eventually across southern MN and SD on 90. All was well and after about an hour on the road I stopped to check on things and top off the fuel. My fiance had discovered riding at freeway speeds was going to be taking it's toll on her neck muscles. I reminded her we had about 2000 miles left on our journey but that she would get used to it. She was a little sad and it made me worried that she would have difficulty early on. We continued..

Southern MN and SD is about the least exciting travel one will ever do. Long, straight, flat nothing-ness for miles and miles. And the heavy crosswinds add to the drain and strain on the body while sitting still for great lengths. I've never ridden to Sturgis or been in SD for that matter, but I was starting to wonder why people bothered.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...ps50e10cee.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...psed91b445.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...01275965_n.jpg

Not much to see here. Except maybe a biker on the side of the road catching a glimpse of the view..

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...18570501_n.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...17726480_n.jpg

The background gives an idea of what the riding out here is like. On the other hand, if you're like me, you've never really ridden on the back. My fiance tells me this view also becomes a bit redundant.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...39232858_n.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...12761630_n.jpg

Meanwhile, at home..

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...e/IMG_0480.jpg


We stopped in Chamberlain, SD for the night on the river. The next day we would hope to see something more than grass and blue sky.


Day 2:
We made our way across SD enduring more boring freeway miles. Eventually we hit the badlands and things start to finally get interesting.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...ps7135ff3d.jpg

Our plan was to see Mt. Rushmore but then continue on. I would have to save the wonderful badlands for another ride.

Mt. Rushmore was a must see for me since I had never been. Much smaller in person (we did get closer than these photo's suggest). The hills around the park are a great ride, and because we were early in the season, few cars were on the road yet. I can imagine once it's tourist season, this would've been an RV parade at 15 mph.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...ps8ee28786.jpg
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Like every large monument in the US, it's quite commercialized. But still a site worth seeing if you haven't.

We ended up staying that night in Custer, SD which was a nice little town. Again, it was very quiet since it was the off-season.

The trip was about to get much more exciting though..

Knute Dunrvnyet 02-20-2013 06:09 PM

great start! Keep it up!

rodr 02-20-2013 06:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TigerMike (Post 20773108)
The owner of the farm was extremely nice and even gave us some fresh beef from his cattle. We explained we wanted to go into the park the next day and he said there was a chance of snow overnight and temps well below freezing. We would have to wait until morning to see what the conditions would be like. But he even offered to let us borrow one of his cars if the weather was unbearable.

That's some amazing hospitality!

Looking forward to the rest. I'm planning a Yellowstone trip for early this summer.

TigerMike 02-20-2013 07:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rodr (Post 20773348)
That's some amazing hospitality!

Looking forward to the rest. I'm planning a Yellowstone trip for early this summer.

We talked to him quite a bit and he had many great stories. He let us walk around his ranch with the dogs and walk near the cattle. Though they were very shy and didn't let us within about 10 feet. What a life living on that beautiful ranch in WY with a view of the mountains. :bow

GB 02-20-2013 07:44 PM

Looks good.. lovely cat :thumb

I deleted your second duplicate post.. just be patient and your posts will be approved.

TigerMike 02-20-2013 07:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GB (Post 20773952)
Looks good.. lovely cat :thumb

I deleted your second duplicate post.. just be patient and your posts will be approved.

Thank you sir, total noob here (aka boob)..

TigerMike 02-20-2013 08:00 PM

Day 3:

We set off and rode into Wyoming. The best parts for riding, of course, are the mountains. From the East, the first range you hit is Big Horn and it's a wonderful site, especially after a couple days of flat surface and cross winds.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...pse3372e9c.jpg
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The fiance was great, but a little worried through the mountain roads and curves. There were almost no cars on the road, it was fantastic. The only time it got a little hairy was when the road suddenly was covered a spider web like design of tar snakes. The bike started to become a bit loose and the fiance was awfully worried. I slowed down a bit.. :evil

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...e/IMG_0912.jpg
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We arrived at a cabin outside of Cody, WY and our timing was excellent as the last 50 miles or so it began to rain on us. The temps were in the 50's so it was a little chilly for a shower. Greeted by the dogs, we felt very welcomed. A farmer owned the cabin and was quite surprised when we rode in.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...17453692_n.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...52470775_n.jpg

The fire helped with the chilly evening - though it would have been less chilly had I covered my crack. We would make this our home base for a few days while we toured the park and Cody.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...28868852_n.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...37143818_n.jpg

The owner of the farm was extremely nice and even gave us some fresh beef from his cattle. We explained we wanted to go into the park the next day and he said there was a chance of snow overnight and temps well below freezing. We would have to wait until morning to see what the conditions would be like. But he even offered to let us borrow one of his cars if the weather was unbearable. He let us walk around the farm (with the dogs as our guides) and see the cattle. It was a beautiful area.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...psb6a51258.jpg

Then, we had some great food and enjoyed some fine beverages before nodding off.

TigerMike 02-21-2013 06:34 AM

We spent a few days enjoying WY. Cody is certainly a western town obsessed with guns and rodeo. I've never been to a rodeo, and sadly we missed the nightly rodeo season. For 4 or so months in summer, there is a rodeo every single night in Cody. No surprise for the rodeo capital of the world.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...e/IMG_0913.jpg

We then headed to Yellowstone. On our way, we traded our 2 wheels for 4 legs (each). Had I been a real ADV rider, I suppose I would've enjoyed this trail on a bike.
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...54116317_n.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...ps2c954697.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...pseca3c189.jpg

Our guide pointed out bear footprints, we thought it was just part of the ride. It turns out the area has a massive wildlife population, including bears. This is one thing people often tell you about Yellowstone. It turned out to be true. Our horses were getting spooked and we were told it was likely from a bear around. Luckily no close encounters.


Back on the road..
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...psb11be1f6.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...ps194e5d41.jpg


Once in the park we must've literally seen thousands of buffalo during our day amongst many other animals.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...78047094_n.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...87675712_n.jpg
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The road was perfect for a gentle cruise. We went 55 mph the entire time and just took in the scenery. We just beat the holiday vacationers, so the park was pretty quiet with almost no RV's in the way.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...50616646_n.jpg
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After seeing old faithful, we journeyed home in the following days.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...75302177_n.jpg


Day 6:

We went north through Montana first.

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...ps8b26bafe.jpg
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...psea454607.jpg
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There was a lot I would've loved to see and ride through in Montana, but that will be for another adventure..

On the night of Day 6 we stayed in Glendive, MT. Just before we arrived, we were behind a semi-truck briefly. I didn't know what was going on but suddenly my fiance wanted me to stop. I thought she was tired and wanted a break but we were so close. I stopped though as she sounded a bit frantic. When we pulled off the freeway she got off the bike and pulled her pants down! :rofl She had a number of bee stings on her thigh from the truck. I thought she was slightly crazy and didn't realize what happened. When we got to Glendive I realized I had dead bees all over the front of my jacket and the bike as well. Some had gotten into the vents in my helmet too - good thing they didn't make it in there alive. Apparently the semi was carrying bee's!

Glendive was, well, a dive.. We found it interesting that most people got around in this town on 4-wheelers. We tried to get a photo of an old woman riding her 4-wheeler but missed it.


Day 7/8:
It was then on to North Dakota to visit an old friend of mine who was living in Jamestown at the time. Once you're out of the mountains in western Montana, you find yourself terribly bored on the interstates once again. So it was a lot of boring riding once again. If we had more time, I suppose we could have found a more scenic route through these areas of eastern Montana and North Dakota?

After spending the night in Jamestown we headed to Minneapolis on the last day.

Skoron 02-21-2013 07:39 AM

What a great post. Thanks for sharing. Big Hi Five to your fiance for doing a 2000 mile road trip for her first big ride. Sounds like a great lady and a keeper.

Noted you had communications on your helmet. I assume you both had them for talking during the trip?

Thanks for letting us see your trip. keep posting more rides on the Roadie.

Skoron

TigerMike 02-21-2013 08:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Skoron (Post 20776330)
What a great post. Thanks for sharing. Big Hi Five to your fiance for doing a 2000 mile road trip for her first big ride. Sounds like a great lady and a keeper.

Noted you had communications on your helmet. I assume you both had them for talking during the trip?

Thanks for letting us see your trip. keep posting more rides on the Roadie.

Skoron

We did have communication devices that we've used before. They work most of the time, but honestly at freeway speeds you really can't hear the other person. We basically gave up trying a few hours in..

flyrodder 02-22-2013 07:12 AM

Good stuff, but don't sell the Plains short. Lots of good riding off of the slab.

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=499369

Mr_Gone 02-22-2013 12:26 PM

:clap :clap :clap

Great ride report!!! Sounds like you guys had a great time.

Time to start planning the next trip.... :D

TigerMike 02-22-2013 12:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by flyrodder (Post 20783921)
Good stuff, but don't sell the Plains short. Lots of good riding off of the slab.

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=499369

You sir, just gave me a place to go to heading west from the twin cities! :clap

Some of those narrow fire roads look excellent :evil

SandHogSC 02-22-2013 01:03 PM

Thanks for Sharing
 
Great pictures. If your going that way I also recommend the Beartooth Highway from Red Lodge, Montana to the Northeast entrance of Yellowstone.

Schlug 02-22-2013 02:21 PM

can you give us some information on that cabin? Looked amazing.


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