Yellowstone, WY to Mountain Home, ID - Yellowstone is unquestionably one of the most amazing rides in the world. From the beautiful, and sometimes surreal, landscape to the amazing display of wildlife that calls the National Park home, this area is absolutely breathtaking. Being able to view it from the back of a motorcycle is spectacular, from the back of a vintage bike makes it pure magic. Puttering along the narrow wooded roads to see the land that time forgot on machines almost 100-years old is an incredible journey and the riders enjoyed every minute of this once-in-a-lifetime odyssey.
Riders spent the day sightseeing through the park and comparing notes on the different animals we all saw. The geysers that spewed into the early morning chill created a fog that made for great pictures against the buffalo that grazed in the fields. One buffalo even gave rider #1, Brad Wilmarth, an early morning wake up call when he charged out of the fog and into the road right in front of Wilmarth, who narrowly missed the massive bison. Full-grown bulls can weigh up to 2,400-pounds, so one can imagine Brad’s panic.
Some riders reported a black bear sighting and even caught it on film before we all gathered at Old Faithful for a group photo by Michael Lichter. This was the shortest day of the run so far, a mere 160-miles across Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons, before our evening stop in Jackson Hole, WY where a party broke out at a local saloon.
Steve Barber, rider #74, graciously invited everyone out to share a few beers and an evening of socializing. Paul Ousey, rider #83 celebrated his birthday and the whole group enjoyed an evening out together. Concerns over engines, miles and the route seemed to dissipate for one night as the clan unwound in the mountain resort town.
Our next day’s 299-mile ride would start out chilly and included fun twisties and lots of moose warnings. None of us, however, saw nary a single sign of Bullwinkle. By the time we rolled into Mountain Home, Idaho for our evening finish, we had seen several herds of antelope, lots of high desert terrain, and passed through the Craters of the Moon.
Riders stopped off for photo ops of the dark lava beds that lie along the Great Rift of Idaho since the aptly named landscape made for a great backdrop. There were several riders who reported electrical troubles and my camera stopped working in the area of the lava beds. We were sure we kept hearing the theme song from “Twilight Zone” playing in the distance. None the less, 51 riders would receive a perfect score for the day.