Wisdom was a great place for me at this moment. The Nez Perce motel was inexpensive, and clean. The local restaurant, The Crossings, was serving great fresh homemade food, and I needed to rest. I had plenty of time to do another blog entry and respond to many overdue emails.
I rested well, and set off today for Dillon. I knew it would be another tough day, over two passes and 64 miles but there was no other choice. However, I only got to the bottom of the main street before turning left and seeing about 50 Angus cattle being herded in my direction, blocking the entire road!
I went back to the Crossings for 5 minutes until they'd gone through. Did I mention it had snowed overnight? Over breakfast I asked whether the passes might be blocked and was told no. I didn't ask the old guy and his wife sat in the window, I was still in disbelief seeing him drinking a bottle of beer (well, Coors Lite anyway) with his breakfast!
The cattle and snow dealt with, off I went again. 100 yards down the road I stopped again feeling like I'd just climbed a mountain. I was gasping for breath again like I was at the end of the day 2 days ago. It was either press on and hope it improved or go back to Wisdom and do what?
So I got to Jackson, 18 miles away on flat straight roads feeling tired. I had a decent lunch in a cafe that had only 5 working lightbulbs out of 16. When the waitress asked what I wanted to order, I said a BLT and some light please.
Leaving Jackson I felt a little better and promised myself I would see a doctor when I got to Dillon.
I got over the climbs, the second being the toughest thanks to three or four false summits. Then saw some of the most breathtaking and desolate landscapes I've seen up until now (see photos).
Oh, I nearly forgot, I saw a pair of Ospreys between Wisdom and Jackson, but they refused to perch long enough, or fly low enough for me to get a photo. Ospreys are like that, ungrateful. We build them their nests, guard them day and night, then they swoop over our lakes and take the biggest and best fish. What thanks do we get? Nothing, they won't even pose for a photo when they're doing nothing but perching on telegraph poles.
As I approached Dillon, I could see from about ten miles away the black skies enveloping what I took to be where Dillon is. As I got closer, I realised I was right. I got drenched for the last 20 minutes of my journey.
I then tried to find McDonalds for the wifi to book a motel. After much searching I found it. Cold, wet and tired I walked in to be faced by bloody Ronald Mcdonald himself (there's only one kids). Thankfully he didn't try to get me to help him make a balloon Big Mac or engage in any kind of conversation with him. I think he sensed that perhaps, right at this moment, he wasn't the first person I wanted to meet.
Found the hotel, only to be told I couldn't bring my bike into the room because they've had all new carpets put in etc. Now then you're probably thinking 'quite right' - but everywhere else I've stayed so far haven't batted an eyelid at me putting my bike in my room. They allow dogs though! Which can tear up soft furnishings and crap and pee on the carpets to their hearts content! But a bicycle, oh no sir. They should have bicycle friendly rooms. Honestly, when I arrived and was told this, I felt like a second-class citizen, having to put my bike in the electrical workshop and not in the way so the maintenance man can work.
Apart from that though, a good hotel (though overpriced).
Rant over. The next morning the Manager, Jodie, was absolutely amazing. She TOOK me to the doctor and then gave me her number to ring when I'd finished. She then picked me up and brought me back (in her own time). What a wonderful woman, and I hope the hotel give her a payrise, because she brings life into an otherwise lifeless hotel.
The doctor experience was good. In a nutshell the thin air and millions of pine trees throwing out pollen, is not helping the slight asthma and hayfever I normally have. Hence the breathing difficulties. I'd had an asthma attack, but I came away content there was nothing seriously wrong with me, and with two different inhalers, that he gave me several of, free of charge.
Back on the road to Sheridan tomorrow, full of inhaled gubbins and clarityn. In a couple, or three days I should be back to normal breathing. Ready for some even thinner air, and a collection of top predators in Jellystone.