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Beartooth Highway - 2011 Trip - Day 17

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Start Location: Laramie, WY
Ending Location: Burley, WA
Miles Today: 529
Trip Miles: 3933
States Visited: 11
Provinces Visited: 0
Low Temp: 47.7° F
High Temp: 84.4° F
Min Elevation: 4117'
Max Elevation: 7880'

Route Map:


Today ended up being nothing like we expected.  We expected it to be cold all day starting in the 40's and probably never getting into the 60's.  We also expected to have rain off and on all day.  These expectations were based on several weather reports.

Wen we left the motel this morning, the temperature was 48 so that part of the forecast was correct.  We left wearing our vests and rain gear and were very comfortable even without plugging in the vests.  By 11:00 the temperature reached 60 and by the time we stopped for lunch at the Wyoming/Utah border it was up to 68.  By the time we got to Ogden the temperature was 80 and it continued to climb to the mid 80's by late afternoon.  On the rain side, although we were into and out of dark clouds all day, we got rained on twice and each time was for less than a minute and we were dried out again within 5 minutes.  I have no idea how we managed this day.  All day we could see significant rain off in the distance and it would look like we were heading directly for it but we always seemed to miss it.  No complaints.

After almost 1000 miles of Illinois, Iowa, and Nebraska, the scenery in Wyoming was amazing.  We were amazed at the miles and miles of mountains, cliffs, and high plains.  Eastern Utah was more of the same, at least until we hit I-15 and Ogden.  We have been through the parks in southern Utah numerous times and this area remains one of our all time favorites.  Unfortunately northern Utah is pretty bleak.  We should pick up better scenery tomorrow as we travel across Idaho and the north-eastern corner of Oregon.

The bike continues to run great and we have had no problems.  We turned over 84,000 miles today and should hit 85,000 by the end of the trip.  We have a cover that we put over the bike over night when we are parked at the motel and it's really shot.  The cover doesn't protect from theft, it just keeps the leather seat from getting wet if it rains and keeps people from messing with anything.  The bike has been parked in dozens of motels all over the country and we have never had a problem.  The cover has been repaired several times and the elastic has been replaced at least once - we will definitely replace the cover for our next trip.

We're stayning at a Super 8 tonight and it's definitely one of the nicest we have stayed it.  We're guessing it's relatively new.  The only problem is the WiFi connection - it's very slow and has gotten worse through the evening.  My guess is a place like this does not have great bandwidth to start with and by the time the motel starts to fill up and people log on, the bandwidth is drastically reduced.  We have definitely seen this before.  If I can't get this uploaded tonight, I will upload in the morning when speeds should be back up.

It looks like we'll make it to the tri-cities tomorrow and get into Everett early Friday afternoon.