Today was the fourth day in a row of commuting on the bicycle to the office. Tomorrow will be the fifth (finally school’s out, so no shuttle dad). Further, someone (read oldest, Todd) needs the Toyo to commute to his first job. Today also brought clouds and needed rain to the Missoula valley. I was not complaining.
I left the office a little early today to try to have time to change and make the weekly Thursday evening group mountain bike ride. There are a couple of these TNRers groups in Missoula. The group I was going to catch up with was going to split up this evening, so I thought I’d meet up with the folks at the Crazy Canyon p-lot. My timing was a little off and when I started the ride up Pattee Canyon I knew I was going to be a bit late. It was at the base of this canyon I encountered two other riders I thought were going to be late as well, but were probably part of the group. It was raining and in my haste I had neglected to grab my shell (same for the office ride this morning).
“Is this the way to the trails?” the rear rider inquired. Listening to the thick foreign accent, I realized that these two were probably not part of the usual group. Turns out Adam and Christian were from Hungary and had just been to Yellowstone Park. Both were staying in Missoula with a Prof. at the U and were heading to Glacier next, following some Lochsa rafting. We found only three riders going off from the p-lot when we arrived (not TNRers). In the rain and mud, we wound our way up along the Crazy Canyon trails.
I asked about the recent floods in Hungary and visited on the state of the economy. Evidently, Hungary is a hold out on the Euro. It was also interesting to learn that there is, in addition to the income tax, a 25% consumption (sales) tax. Adam mentioned he was a road cycling racer (“roadies” in MT). So the conversation went until we reached the area where the hang gliders go off. Christian was freezing in the wind and rain, but he managed a picture of me standing alongside Adam.
The descent was down to the U. golf course, with the upper area consisting of wet roots and rocks. We lost Christian on the last section, but managed to reconnect in the University area where I said so long and hightailed it up the hill to the house.