Day 17 was very scenic, but a grind because of the detour. The detour added an additional 20 miles making the total mileage 97 miles. Without the detour, it would have been a relatively easy day, mostly downhill, but the detour added not only miles but several very difficult climbs as we climbed to the ridgeline and back down several times. A flat tire made the day longer as did a headwind the last 20 miles.
The first 25 miles was through red rock canyons. The first two pictures were of the red rock canyons and the third of the Wind River through the canyon. The Wind River is flooding and the reason for the detour. The detour was through open range with amazing views of the whole valley from the ridgeline.
From mile 40 on it was just a grind. I kept a phrase running through my mind from my high school wrestling coach -- “run until you can no longer run then walk, walk until you can no longer walk and then crawl, when you can no longer crawl, get up and run.” After two very difficult days, we were all hoping for an easier day, and the extra miles and climbs were both physically and emotionally exhausting. Tomorrow is the longest ride of the tour, 120 miles. At this point I cannot believe I will get up and bike again in the morning. It will be interesting.
The really good news is Kim drove here form Big Sky and will stay through Casper which is a rest day. It is great having her here.