Tuesday, September 21st - Day 80 - Dodged a Bullet

Great Falls Travel Blog

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The morning started with cloud cover as far as the eye could see. The ride ahead was some 349 miles. Yes, I said MILES... Fortunately, the speed limit in this state is just a suggestion and everyone was speeding (the other 10 vehicles I saw, hehe) and highway sherriffs don't appear to patrol. I think it took me just under 4 hours to get here and that was with filling up twice.

Mother nature and I nearly got aquainted real close. A deer was crossing the road, I saw it, no problem, I honked a bit and it trotted off, and I was carrying on. OH SHIT, ANOTHER DEER! lol, I'd been looking at the one walking off and not noticed it's pal coming on the road right into my lane! No real drama, just eased off the throttle and the bike naturally slowed and the deer had plenty of time to get out of the way, but man did I laugh!

The landscape changed here and there, and satisfied me, keeping me from boredom. The light raining subsided, and the clouds became slightly more sparse, painting the land with darkened blotches as far as the eye could see. It was gorgeous against the backdrop of grey shifting clouds.

At one point I was following a horse trailer. I didn't notice but wind was blowing through it, spraying mud/manure into the oncoming lane. I passed. I was then covered in a mist of shit-mud. Gross.

I arrived in Great Falls, and pulled into my Super 8. Knowing I'd put over 10,000 kilometers on my tire, I had been checking it on arriving at new destinations. It had looked pretty thin in Glendive, but I figured I could probably make it to Calgary (Yes, I'm going to start getting serviced at Blackfoot. Done with Argyll Motorsports, I'll ride the extra 300 kilometers in the future and make a trip of it). I looked down, silver bands were exposed in the center of my tire... lol, whoopsieeeesss! I pressed down with my gloved hands, it was spongey in the center... Not much longer and I would have worn through the cables, suffering a rear tire blow out. The front was still good. It was the luggage cases in the back with the extra weight that was wearing the rear out faster. haha, I'm no moto guru, but perhaps altering the preload or suspension or something would change that. I kind of doubt it though.

I got in my room and got the laptop out. Yeah, my Boost Mobile phone gets no network signal here. Must have stopped yesterday on my way to Glendive, whoops. Called Harley to ask if they had tires as I'd been told that some Harley Davidson's were now selling BMW in smaller areas where no BMW dealers were. No luck, their tires are totally different. But they suggested I try a place called Metzger. They didn't have any tires for me and it would be 3 days before they could get an order up here.

Three days in Great Falls... Oh boy, positive side, positive side... Okay, I can go to the gym every day... And... I'll start writing my book. Yeah that's right, it's been decided. Actually it was decided as soon as someone suggested it. But now it just seemed so right, what a fantastic story I've been privileged to live. So many lessons learned, so many great experiences, fantastic people. And I'd have to ride all the way to Calgary in a day in time to see the Flames game, but I think I could make it work.

Fortunately Metzger had suggested "Steve's". And "Steve" had a tire. Not quite the right one, but good enough to get me gone. I'll get the front switched out in Calgary. It still has quite a few milimeters. Anyway, they'll have it ready by the morning. Sweet. On to Lethbridge. 

As for tonight, google says Great Falls doesn't have much going on. Wish it was easier to find the community art papers, the local paper had events listed, mostly bingos. Oh well! Another night of youtube I guess, thank Super8 for good wifi.

Take care, Ride safe

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Great Falls
photo by: esterrene