MitTower Climb to Turah
I sat up in my bivvy many times throughout the night. Almost once every hour. Every time I took notice how beautiful the view was. I mean I could see the city lights and knew I was close to town. But each time I also took stock in the situation and it was not impressive. My legs were still frozen and as soon as I awoke I started to shiver. It is like I woke up to shiver to generate some much-needed heat. Then I would pass out again.
I awoke to a beautiful morning on top of a ridge outside of Missoula. I stood up and to my amazement I felt my feet. I was entirely thawed out. It was 6 am and from what I remember from the forecast today was going to be super nice day. My plan was to ride into town and quit this year’s RMVQ … but that feeling started to fade.
I rode out and on Jumbo Saddle to declare, at least to myself, that I was not quitting. I made my way over to MitTower and started up the climb. I needed water so I stopped at a creek. Then it came back to me … my water filter was broke. I figured that if I could get to the Turah General Store I could restock the good ol-fashion bike-packing way. I started to dream of the perfect breakfast.
But all this took back seat to the real reason I wanted to get to Turah. As soon as possible. I knew that if I did make it there I would have a friend to ride AlpDeTurah with. I was hoping my friend Ed would be waiting there. I sure needed a friend after almost freezing to death the night before. I could see him standing with that amazed grin, relishing in the entire sortie.
The climb did take a little while but only because I decided to save energy, keep my heart rate at 133, and walk all the climbs. Actually it seemed like forever but eventually I reached the top where I posted a Marcy photo. Almost to Turah I thought to myself.
The rest of the trip was pretty exiting… well except for the road-ride from Bonner to Turah. The route features a huge bomber downhill and a swinging bridge. All the while dreaming of my entrance to Turah. My friend waiting … with some sort of bacon breakfast. Smiling and waiting for me. It would be glorious.
I finally did arrive but not until noon. And my dreams of meeting up with a friend to ride with faded into a dizzy glare. Thoughts of breakfast long gone. It had been over 15 hours since I had taken in water or eaten. I had climbed over a snow-covered peak. I was delirious. I needed saved.
I stumbled into the Turah General Store and announced that I had ridden over a hundred miles and wanted to buy some water, borrow a cup, and needed to use the microwave to make some butter coffee.