With the dry, arid climate, the temperature here changes dramatically. I left with temps in the high 50's, wearing arm warmers for the first several hours. It warmed up quickly though, with the heat rising to 90's in the afternoon.
The route included many rollers today. Rollers can be fun and the most enjoyable of rides as you gain speed during the decline, maintain the speed up the hill and power over the top of the hill, catching acceleration on the downhill again. These, however, were not those rollers. Perhaps I was not in the mood, or perhaps I did not have the strength. Regardless, they were reasonably enjoyable in morning with some work up hill for a bit, followed by the relief of coasting downhill , in short intervals.
There were no towns or service areas between Jordan and Circle, so I had packed extra water and food for the trip, with a plan to stop often along the way. My favorite part of the breaks is the absolute quiet. Then you realize it is not quiet, with the wind rustling the grass, the chirps and calls of the birds, the chatter of some insects and perhaps a distant bellow of a cow. It is not so silent, but the air is certainly filled with the sounds of silence. Peaceful. Solitude.
My favorite stop occurred early in the ride, when I was scanning the horizons with my Bushnells. I spotted a fox stalking through the fields, a grazing herd of antelope who had spotted me before I spotted them, along with a pair of falcons perched high on the telephone poles.
This, like many of miles before, is hard-living area. The historical signs I read as I entered the city said as much. It is hard work making a living in this area, but many have been successful. The population in the McCone county works out to about 1 person for every 1 1/2 sq miles, with cows out-numbering people about 20-1. That pretty well describes the area.
Tonight I am camping an RV park, where I hope to find a shade tree. Tomorrow is through Glendive (where I plan to have lunch) before ending up in Wibaux, MT.