Day 26: Chinook to Malta - Racpat Northern Tier - CycleBlaze

June 26, 2021

Day 26: Chinook to Malta

The Wind is keeping us humble

“There are mosquitoes in your slip stream,” Patrick says riding behind Rachel. We are on the road early again today and have a mild tailwind. “And then they discover me, and all they have to do is turn around and slow down a bit,” he continues. There is a window of calm winds between 6 and 8am. We make good time to Harlem anticipating a café. Only to discover the café is closed on the weekend. We also had information there was road construction replacing culverts, but the project finished and we only see the evidence of the repairs.

A sheriff passes us, then we see his lights on, when we reach him, we see he is trying to herd escaped cattle from across the road. We are in cattle country with signs “Save the Cowboy stop the American Prairie Reserve”. We stop at the gas station/convenience store in Harlem for chocolate milk for Robert, and Frappuccino drinks for us, along with an egg and ham croissant. The next destination is Dodson, with some thought that we would stop there for the day, carrying on to Malta tomorrow for a half rest day and get a motel room. Holland is playing the Czech Republic in the Eurocup.

Dodson however is apocalyptic with a mini-market that is about to go belly-up and no water tower. We find picnic tables in what once must have been a park, behind one of the two closed-up bars and in front of the church, for a food break. The dilapidated tables are chained down. This is not a nice place to stay, so the unspoken decision is to keep going to Malta. The wind is picking up stronger and not in our favor. And the road has more long straight inclines with varying shoulders. Road kill also changes to snakes, turtles and prairie dogs, and maybe a badger. Patrick thinks the landscape at times is more like a savanna with grass fields, wetlands and groups of trees.

Whichever way the road goes, the wind changes from friend to foe.

We ride into Malta about 1pm. After stopping at the first gas station across from the Edgewater motel, RV Park and campground, we will explore and decide where to camp. Patrick says: “I’ll go check out the City Park, and you guys check out the RV Park, and I’ll come back here and we can decide where to stay.” Then Robert says, “how about we call each other.” We have learned so much from Robert, especially how to properly use the cell phone. This is not yet in our psyche since we only recently gave up our landline for a cell phone, and still essentially use it as a landline.  Earlier in the day a RV pulling a car was coming our way. As it rattled by we notice that the car has lost its left front wheel and is running on the rim. The RV driver is oblivious to all this. Robert calls 911.

Even though the Edgewater is listed on the ACA bike maps, there is no tent camping allowed. Typically this is because RV parks don’t want to bother with keeping a restroom building clean. Patrick gives us directions to the City Park, turn left at junction 191 South through the rest area. There’s an old railroad bridge with Tafton Trail it looks like there is an unsealed bike path on the north side of the highway. We pick a shelter in the city park, there is water and toilets but no showers so another sponge bath tonight. Patrick and Robert ride into town to pick up a few things at the Albertsons, but no dinner, instead check out a Great Northern Hotel restaurant. We will walk to town and have a celebration dinner since we all have cycled over 1000 miles.. 

During our ride today we were able to touch base with a Warmshowers host in Glasgow. They live on a farm six miles out of town but have offered to pick us up downtown at the Albertsons.

We are hoping to take a rest day with them as well.

Is that a solar panel on a coal train?
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The Pink Church
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Andrea BrownSomewhere in that cemetery is a grave marked “Blue Lightning Brown”.
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2 months ago
Rachel and Patrick HugensTo Andrea BrownWe were fighting mosquitoes, would have liked to stop to explore more.
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Rachel and Patrick HugensThat’s right. The mosquitoes were very special there, I had forgotten.
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Andrea BrownBlue Lightning Brown? There just has to be a great story behind that.
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2 months ago
Rachel and Patrick HugensTo Scott AndersonI agree with Scott, Andrea please share
Racpat
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Scott AndersonI’m only quoting Bruce who braved the ferocious mosquitoes and saw that particular headstone. I’ve been there too but in a chillier season so had more inclination to peruse the interesting homemade grave markers. Of course you know that all Browns are related so I should know more about this person than I do. The church is on the Fort Belknap reservation and the names reflect the indigenous occupants.
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Andrea BrownOkay, the Lightning Librarian (whoa) has tracked down her distant electric auntie. Blue Lightning Brown was a 64-year-old female from Roosevelt County who died in 1920. It’s unclear what her tribal affiliation was but that is information that would be on the tribal rolls.
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Andrea BrownShe was likely Assiniboine Sioux.
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Andrea BrownTook you long enough, LL. The suspense has been unbearable.
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2 months ago
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Bill?
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Bill ShaneyfeltShowy milkweed.

http://linnet.geog.ubc.ca/Atlas/Atlas.aspx?sciname=Asclepias+speciosa
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2 months ago
Leaving Belknap Indian Reservation and crossing the Milk River...again
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Dodson park
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Reached Malta, discussing options of where to stay
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Celebration reaching 1000miles
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Jen GrumbyCongrats!!

You all look great .. happy, strong, and wise.

Here's to the next 1000. 😁
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2 months ago
Rachel and Patrick HugensTo Jen GrumbyThanks Jen for the encouragement!
Racpat
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonHow funny! We hit the big 1000 on the same day! We posted ours a day early, but were still 7 miles shy. I’d say you two were really entitled to celebrate - you’ve put in some tough miles back there!
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2 months ago
Rearranging the furniture to pitch the tents in the shelter
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Dinner at the Great Northern Hotel
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Today's ride: 70 miles (113 km)
Total: 1,062 miles (1,709 km)

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