Day 11 – June 11 – Sandpoint, ID to Bonners Ferry, ID – 37 miles

Leaving Sandpoint was hard this morning.  The hosts were generous, the lake was picturesque, and the city was relatively tranquil.  I just may live here someday.

Highway 95 north offered decent shoulder for my bike most of the way to Bonners Ferry.

Lake McArthur Wildlife Management Area:

image

Because it was a rather short day, I arrived in this interesting town relatively early, but good thing.  Entering town, the chain began sticking to the spokes, preventing smooth flow when shifting or coasting.  After getting some chips at the grocery store, I meandered to the county fairgrounds on my semi-functional ride.

I cooked up chili from a can on my campstove amidst a crowd of onlookers and ate my lunch.  This popular park had many other people out for a picnic, and a few kids playing basketball, but, naturally the guy with a cycling jersey and a bike loaded down with 4 panniers and a sleeping bag will get the most looks.

View of distance from county park:

image

An entertaining squirrel :)

image

Lunch was good, but the condition of my chain and spokes was still uncertain.  So, like a champ, I rotated my tires (which I was going to do anyway) and inspected the issue.  Turns out, all the road I took with road construction and new tar on the road added to the build up and residue on the chain and spokes.  After cleaning them off with paper towels and water from the sink in the bathroom, my issues were fixed.

I also received word from Bob, who I had contacted earlier, in Bonners Ferry that I could stay at his place for the night.

I rode over there, dropped off my heavy gear, and walked into the old part of Bonners Ferry seeking a good place to eat.

The Panhandle Restaurant did not disappoint.  A Philly Cheesesteak with fries, topped off with a homemade apple pie and ice cream satisfied all of my hunger.

Panhandle Restaurant:

image

I walked back to the house after purchasing 2 bananas, a can of chili, and a single package of Ramen noodles.

The post office was rather grand too:

image

The sunset over the Kootenai River in Bonners Ferry:
image

Another day is in the books.

Tomorrow should be a beautiful ride

Day 10 – June 10 – Spokane, WA to Sandpoint, ID – 71 miles

Julianne and Bjorn were great hosts for the night.  They provided me with food, a shower, and a nice bedroom for the night.  Being cyclists that tour themselves, they knew firsthand what it’s like. I am grateful for the stay.

Leaving Spokane, I picked up an extra inner tube in town, knowing I would likely need it.

The decision for the trip to go west to east paid dividends once again as a light SW wind helped propel me on the route NE of Spokane.

On the way, Newman Lake, a small community (they almost spelled my name right), held The Sweet Tooth Bakery. I was a sucker for the name and stopped in to check it out.

The Sweet Tooth:

image

A new state!
image

The landscape included scenic portions of trees, the start of the Rockies, and a grand entrance to an amazing city, Sandpoint, ID.

Lake Pend Oreille offered magnificent views.  I crossed a bridge, previously the longest wooden bridge in the world, to enter town.

Lake Pend Oreille:
image

Sticky Fingers bike shop sold me 2 more inner tubes after I had another flat on the road today, bringing the total to 4 flats.

Chris and Kathy were my hosts for tonight.  I could not have been treated better.

I ended the the day gazing out at the lake and preparing for another day tomorrow.