Pinedale was a great stop after the desert, with plenty of restaurants and fresh food available we restocked and felt ready for more.
We decided not to stick to the official Divide route, and instead take a detour through the Grand Teton National Park, so headed to Jackson Hole, 77 miles on the road. We soon found ourselves riding back into the mountains, with stunning scenery round every corner, and were very glad to have chosen that route.
About 10 miles before the end we stopped in Hoback to get a snack, and were surprised to be greated by a scene that felt like a High School – spring break type movie! Cars full of semi clothed youths were pulling up at the gas station, turns out there was a KOA (Kamp of America) nearby, offering popular rafting trips down the river. This shouldn’t seem like anything out the ordinary, but after so long away from it all we were nervous that the next few days would continue along this theme, and spoil our tranquility, thankfully it was short lived!
We pushed on, riding on a well surfaced bike path to finish the day. Jackson is a busy tourist hot spot, and we stopped in the centre looking for a super market before the last few miles to a camp ground. Map out, tourist style, we were just starting to get frustrated with the lack of an easy option when Brendan, his wife Emily and sister Rebecca approached us asking if we needed help. After a breif conversation about the ride and our plans, Brendan and Emily invited us to camp in their back garden, drive us to the store and even cook us dinner! Keen riders themselves, with Emily training for the Leadville 100, it was amazing to once again be treated so well, with a nice place to stay, shower, food and conversation making for a brilliant evening. The people we have met on this trip who have shown us such generosity and hospitality are really making it something special, we hope to be able to offer the same back home!
After some route advice from our hosts we continued north, into the Grand Teton National Park. As the mountains came into view we realised this was some of the most spectacular views so far, and a choice well made.
We stopped for a quick swim then carried on to Colter Bay campground, which allthough much less wild than what we were used to, a bear proof food box and grocery store made things more comfortable!
The next morning we carried on our detour, intending to rejoin the route just south of Yellowstone, but after forgetting to check to map we found ourselves continuing into the famous Park itself. After considering an 8 mile backtrack we decided to keep going and see what was on offer, hoping the obscene RV traffic wouldn’t knock us off the road. To those back home unaware of American RV’s they range from normal campervan size, to bigger than an articulated lorry, often pulling a spare jeep, boat, quad bike or all 3 behind. Emblazoned with graphics and names such as ‘Pioneer’ or ‘Chateaux’ they are quite a sight, and the opposite of our minature tent, but hopefully their owners get as much enjoyment as we do from our modest set up.
We stopped at ‘Old Faithful’ Yellowstones most famous geyser, which was something of a let down given the crouds and merchandise surrouding it, but some of the smaller thermal pools and features were an interesting sight.
Pushing on we made it just outside the park boundary to West Yellowstone, where commercial America is restored with a full complement of restaurants and amenities, which means we can give you all an update! Hopefully rejoin the route tomorrow which takes us briefly though Idaho and onto Montana, for more adventures!