Sunday, September 21, 2014

Guest Post: Nuri Monzonis Martinez


****This is the second of the guest posts I asked my friends to write after traveling with me from Glacier National Park to Jasper, Canada.  I translated Nuri's post, hoping to maintain her voice and sense of humor!  Enjoy the English version at the bottom of the post.****

The 3 Amics from theloongwayhome on Vimeo.



Un cop he arribat a casa i he posat les coses del viatge al seu lloc, tinc la sensació de no haver marxat tant de temps, ja que tot està tal i com havia deixat abans. Bé, tot no, el meu cap està ben diferent, no em paren de passar imatges i bons records d’aquestes cinc setmanes impressionants. Així doncs, ara falta posar ordre als pensaments i a les idees per reflexionar sobre aquesta aventura i complir amb la meva paraula i redactar el post per la Melissa. 

Però, per on començar? Què explicar? Quan penso en tots aquests dies (vaig estar viatjant 3 setmanes despres també) em venen tantes coses al cap que es fa molt difícil organitzar-les i escriure un text amb cap i peus. Així que, després de pensar una estona, se m’ha acudit redactar el top 10 dels records més divertits, emocionants i inoblidables d’aquests quinze dies que vam passar The 3 tres amics junts.

Per les costes del Garraf, provant la Surly!!
Però abans del top 10; fer un petit incís de com va sorgir la idea de fer aquest viatge i del que pensava que seria al principi i del que ha arribat a ser i de com ha superat amb escreix totes les meves expectatives.  Recordo perfectament un dia de l’estiu passat, en que vaig acompanyar a la Melissa a provar la Surly amb les adaptacions pel seu viatge; va ser molt divertit i vam parlar de moltes coses. Va ser aquell dia quan ella em va dir…Nuri, tu amb les vacances tant llargues que tens podries venir a acompanyar-me quan estigui a EUA, jo li vaig dir que m’agradaria molt, però en realitat pensava que seria complicat arribar a fer-ho. No va ser fins al mes d’abril quan em vaig posar en contacte amb ella perquè fes una col·laboració amb els meus alumnes, quan va aparèixer de nou la idea del viatge i em vaig decidir a fer-ho! 

Yellowstone canyon
El Vicens també volia anar així que entre els dos ens vam posar d’acord per preparar la ruta de Yellowstone fins a Jasper, creuant bona part de les Rockies. Abans de marxar les meves dues principals preocupacions eren si podria comunicar-me en anglès i si tindria prou forces per aguantar el ritme dels meus dos grans companys. Pensava que bàsicament anava a pedalar a llocs nous i ja m’estava bé; però estava molt equivocada. En arribar les meves preocupacions van desaparèixer, era capaç de parlar fluidament amb tothom i el que és més important m’entenien; i podia seguir el ritme dia rere dia (tenia la bici més lleugera) i el cansament no existia, ja fos per les ganes de veure coses noves o bé per la motivació de viure diferents aventures cada dia. Sí, sí, aventures a diari; com jo deia...la bici era un “complement”, no era l’element més important del viatge, encara que si que era imprescindible perquè era el nostre mitjà de transport. En aquestes línies només em centraré en les anècdotes que vaig viure amb la Melissa i el Vicens. Així doncs començo amb el “Top 10”!!!

Super avió!!!
10. Ui... que no se si arribarà aquest avió... Aquesta història fa referència als medis de transport que hem fet servir (bici, ferry, avió i cotxe). Imagineu-se la meva cara i la del Vicens quan, després de més de 24 hores de vols i esperes a aeroports vam trobar-nos que el nostre darrer avió era molt petit, semblava un avió antic i tenia una capacitat per 30 persones. Era tant petit que la safata era més gran que el passadís i anava portant a un per un les begudes. Un cop vam aterrar a West Yellowstone vam respirar tranquils al veure que havien arribat les caixes de les nostres bicis. Després de dos dies viatjant vam arribar a destí i estàvem molt emocionats!! Yellowstone ens esperava amb els seus paisatges llunars, els seus flaires especials i els seus atacs de mosquits en forma d'eixams on per primera vegada em van picar mosquits al crani ignorant tot el meu cabell!

fent mil fotos....
9. L’ascensió a la carretera més mítica: quin dia aquell que vam pujar les 30 milles del “Going to the sun road”! No m'estanya el seu nom!!! Vam començar a pujar a dos quarts de set del matí perquè tancaven la circulació als ciclistes a les onze del matí. Estàvem a tres graus centígrads amb tota la roba posada i encara feia fred!! Però poc a poc a mesura que la pendent s'accentuava vam entrar en calor i vam gaudir del paisatge de Glaciar National Park. Què bonica va ser l’ascensió! No podíem parar de fer fotos i sense adonar-nos vam completar els gairebé 40 km de pujada a les 10'55!! Just a temps! El que no sabíem es que a l'altra banda ens esperava una carretera sense asfaltar plena de fang que ens cobriria de dalt a baix a nosaltres, a les alforges i a les bicis. Així que després d'una llarga etapa, que va acabar sent molt calorosa, vam fer una cadena de neteja de bicis i alforges a la casa del ranger que ens acollia aquella nit.
casi a dalt de tot

pujant, pujant, i pujant





Coronant Logan Pass en el moment exacte 10'55!!















8. El moment més "religiós": durant el segon dia que pedalàvem per l'estat de Montana, vam anar a dormir a casa d'una família mormona. Era la primera vegada que tractava amb persones d'aquesta religió, i em van sorprendre gratament, pensava que serien extremistes als típics ideals americans, però mentre parlava amb el pare de família em vaig adonar que tot i ser fidel a idees molt tradicionals pel que fa al paper dels homes i les dones al món actual, no era radical en les seves idees polítiques. El moment graciós va arribar quan ja estàvem llestos per sopar i vam veure que havia arribat el moment de beneir la taula. Era el primer cop a la meva vida que ho veia en directe i per suposat que formava part d'aquest ritual tant usual per a ells. Va ser interesant sentir com realment ens desitjaven sort pel viatge i estaven agraïts de la nostra companyia.

Reparant una de tantes punxades
7. Pensar en positiu realment funciona?: i tant que si!!! Com ja sabeu alguns, vaig tenir problemes amb la roda de darrera i el pes de les alforges. Només arribar a Yellowstone, en 20 km, ja vaig punxar dues vegades i gràcies a que ens vam adonar que la cinta del fons de llanta estava moguda i a que el Vicens se li va acudir cobrir-ho amb cinta d'embalar, vaig poder pedalar durant quatre dies fins que vam anar a una botiga i ho van canviar. Així doncs, “l'apanyo” va funcionar i va anar acompanyat de pensaments positius... El primer dia a Yellowstone, em deia a mi mateixa... Funcionarà!! Perquè allà en mig del parc poca cosa més podíem fer. Tot va anar bé durant uns dies, però va arribar una onada de calor, i després d’una excursió a un llac de Glacier Parc, al tornar vam trobar que la càmera havia explotat, sense donar-hi voltes vàrem reparar-ho però al dia següent es va repetir dues vegades més i al següent dia, ja a terres canadenques, quan tots anàvem pensant, sense dir res en veu altar per no gafar-ho, de moment aguanta... Es va repetir de nou, feia molta calor i vam parar a l'ombra d'un arbre al costat d'un jardí i allà es va donar una escena ben còmica!! Després de varies proves i canviar la càmera unes tres vegades, quan ja estàvem llestos per marxar, la Melissa s’adonà que llavors era ella la que havia punxat!! En lloc de perdre el bon humor, tots tres començarem riure sense parar i els nostres veïns es van afegir al veure la nostra "bona sort". Al continuar la ruta, als 10 km... Tornà a passar, tornà a explotar i vaig abandonar! No podia continuar d'aquella manera, així que vam decidir fer autoestop per arribar d’hora al poble on dormíem i anar a una botiga de bicis per reparar-ho. El pensament positiu va funcionar perquè en dos minuts un home ja havia parat i em portava a la botiga de bicis de Cambrook i m’ho van poder reparar! Així doncs, el pensar que tot anirà bé funciona!!!
Apunt de pujar al cotxe que tant ens va ajudar





6. Moment més emotiu: el 23 de juliol, quan era l’onzè aniversari mensual del viatge de la Melissa ens vam trobar amb ella a Missoula, Montana. Quan vam arribar pedalant al Adventure Cyclinc Center i vam sentit a la Melissa cridar i riure va ser impressionant! El Vicens havia fet unes samarretes the Loong way home amb un dibuix d’ella i ens les havíem posat per sorprendre-la; però amb l’emoció no s’adonava!! Va ser molt divertit quan ho va veure i va començar a cridar!! Mentre que aquest moment va ser molt divertit i alegre, el moment del comiat a Munt Robson va ser molt trist! Ens ho havíem passat tant bé els tres plegats! Estàvem segurs de que ens trobaríem molt a faltar! Era molt estrany agafar camins diferents després d'haver passar quinze dies 24 hores junts. En separar-nos miràvem enrere i ens faltava una part de nosaltres.


MInuts després de trobar-nos!

Gaudint del passeig en vaixell del nostre host més divertit
5. El host mes divertit: El contrast de cultures i maneres de pensar de la gent amb la que vam passar bones estones era increïble. Mentre un dia esmorzàvem a la casa dels mormons, a la nit sopàvem a casa d’una gent amb ideals totalment oposats. El “vaqueros” els hi deia jo (encara que no ho eren) vivien a una casa en mig de prats a Montana i gaudien de la vida i el seu entorn. Quan vam arribar ens esperaven amb ganes de escoltar les nostres històries, però nosaltres vam anar a un rodeo (arribant allà amb el seu cotxe amb armes incloses) i va ser després quan van els hi vam explicar durant la seva pizza partty! Però si això ja va ser divertit, imagineu-se l’endemà al seu vaixell navegant per un llac impressionant.
El primer rodeo dels tres 

Les "vaqueres" preparades perl rodeo!
4. El millor menjar: hem tingut molta sort amb els host i ens han mimat amb bons menjars: pizza i el tacos partty de la Tory Ann, el sopar interminable i variat d’East Glacier, les hamburgueses i els nachos de la Brewery del sopar de comiat, les nostres llaunes de beans dolces canadenques o de chili... Però el millor de tots per mi, els gelats de un litre i mig que ens hem menjat entre els tres després de pedalar durant sis hores!!!

El nostre camping més bonic
3. El millor càmping: a Montana vàrem tenir molta sort i cada dia dormíem amb un host, però al passar a Canadà vam haver d’acampar. El primer dia d’acampada lliure va ser molt divertit, sopar a la fresca i buscar un racó on amagar les tendes va ser tot un aprenentatge, vam decidir acampar darrera de l’esglèsia del poble, quan estàvem plantant les tendes ens vam adonar que era un “spot” de luxe: teníem aigua i endoll de la corrent!! Tot i els serveis que ens oferia aquest lloc, puc dir que l’espai més bonic on vam acampar va ser davant de Castle Rock al parc de Lake Louis. Com els campings de la zona de Banff i Lake Louis estaven pleníssims vam fer acampada lliure arriscant-nos a que ens multessin i ens fessin fora dels parcs; però que volien...amb la bici no es tant fàcil fer 200km per trobar allotjament. Així que durant tres dies ens arriscarem a ser multats o sorpresos pels ossos dels indrets. Va ser increïble veure marxar i sortir el sol amb aquell escenari de fons.

Picnoc en un escenari de luxe

Encara no sabiem de que anava allò del Tubing....
2. El moment de mes riure: els moments en que no hem pogut parar de riure han sigut molts, els moments de gasos, la bicicleta gimnasta del Vicens que li agrada fer tombarelles, la complicitat entre les noies...però el que s’emporta l’honor d’estar al top ten es el moment tubing, on vam estar rient sense parar durant 10 minuts tots tres i que ens va fer riure uns altres 10 minuts al veure els vídeos. El tubing consisteix en enganxar una mena de matalàs a una embarcació perquè aquesta l’arrossegui, podríem dir que és una espècie de wakeboard, per “patosos en la que vas assegut

Preparats pel Tubing


Fent un treking pels glaciars
1. El dia mes complert: per a mi un dels millors dies va ser el de Lake Louis per la quantitat de coses diferents que vam fer i el que vàrem riure. Vam despertar-nos davant de Castle Rock a les 6 del matí per recollir la tenda ven ràpid i que ningú ens veies, d’allà vàrem pedalar uns 30km fins a Lake Louis i un cop vam esmorzar, comprar menjar i connectar-nos a internet durant una estona, vàrem lligar les bicis i vam visitar el llac, (que tot la quantitat de gent que hi havia, no perdia encant) i vàrem fer una caminada per els sis glaciars de la vall. Un cop vam tornar, ens trobàrem amb un amic de la Melissa que ens va convidar a uns nachos deliciosos, que vàrem devorar; ens va incitar a colar-nos al spa del seu hotel de luxe, cosa que vam fer i aprofitar al màxim després de dos dies sense dutxa; i per últim ens va recomanar anar a dormir a Moraine Lake, cosa que vam pensar que seria bona idea. 
Ben relaxats al spa

Així doncs, després de sortir ven nets del spa a les 8 de la nit vam agafar les bicis i vam pujar durant 10km per una carretera espectacular que ens portava al llac; anàvem dient que bonic veure marxar el sol aquí, val la pena pujar. Però quan arribarem al llac, sorpresa per nosaltres: no hi havia càmping, només un hotel de luxe que no ens podíem permetre! Després de riure una estona per la “ficada de pota”, com ja era fosc, vam buscar un espai per acampar. Va ser al costat d’una taula de càmping protegits o amagats darrera d’uns arbres i amb el menjar penjat a uns 200m, ja que aquella zona...també era la casa d’un munt d’ossos. Per tant vam acabar el dia tornant a acampar d’il·legals i amb la bona sort de que no va aparèixer cap ós per la nit! 

Després de superar la nit de free camping al lloc més poblat d'ossos de Lake Louis

I fins aquí el meu top ten dels moments més divertits d’aquests dies dels the 3 amics junts, podria explicar moltes coses més, perquè hem sigut tres persones que ens hem sabut adaptar unes a les altres i que ens hem compenetrat molt bé a l’hora de prendre decisions i tenir en compte les idees dels tres. Aquest ha sigut el secret perquè hagi anat tant bé, ja que no sempre és fàcil viatjar amb gent. A més a més, puc dir que crec que hem passat de ser companys de bici a ser molt bons amics, ja que aquests dies ens han unit molt! Com em va dir una persona molt sabia per a mi: suar junts uneix un munt! Jejej


Viçens, Nuri, and Melissa




ENGLISH VERSION


The 3 Amics from theloongwayhome on Vimeo.

Once I returned home from my trip and got things settled, it felt as though I hadn't been gone so long as everything at home seemed to be just the same as before I left. Everything, that is, except my mind that is infiltrated with flashbacks of images and fun memories from those unbelievable five weeks. Now, I'm trying to organize all the thoughts and reflect on this adventure, and like I promised Melissa, write a post for her blog.

But where do I start? What should I explain? When I think about all the time I was gone (I traveled for 3 weeks afterwards as well), so many different things come to my mind, it is hard to organize them all and write a complete blog from start to finish. Therefore, after thinking about it a good while, I decided to write a top ten list of the most memorable, fun, and exciting moments during our 15 days together as “The 3 Amics”.

Melissa and I trying out the Surly before the trip
But before I begin, I should explain how the idea to join Melissa occurred, what I thought it would be like, and how it exceeded my expectations in every possible way! I remember perfectly the day, two summers ago, when I rode with Melissa to try out her Surly and some of it's gear along the coast. It was really fun and we talked about all sorts of things on the ride. It was on that day that Melissa told me,....Nuri, with your long summer vacation as a teacher, you could come and ride with me for part of my route in the USA. I wanted to tell her it was a great idea, but realistically I thought it was a bit complicated to organize. It wasn't until the end of April when I contacted her because my students were following her trip and wanted to collaborate with her on a project, that the idea to travel with her came round again, and I decided to go! 

Yellowstone Canyon
Viçens also wanted to go, so between the two of us, we planned a route that went from Yellowstone to Jasper, across the Rockies. Before I left, two things main things worried me most about the trip: communicating in English, would people understand my English? and would I be strong enough to keep up with two strong fellow riders?  I thought the trip was simply going to be riding around from place to place discovering new sights.....Boy was I mistaken!

When I arrived, my worries disappeared because I saw that I was completely capable of talking with the people, and to my surprise, fluidly; they even understood me! I also saw that I was able to keep up with Viçcens and Melissa day after day (my bike was the lightest) and that I didn't feel tired because it motivated and energized me to see new things and live different experiences each day! Yes that is right, a different adventure each day; as I said from the beginning, biking was only a small part of our day even though it was our only form of transportation. Here are the“Top 10 Experiences” we had together and the anecdotes that came about.

Our great plane!!
10. Our biggest worry: Uh oh....I don't know if this plane is going to make it....This story is about all the different forms of transportation we took in order to arrive to Yellowstone (bike, ferry, plane, and car).   Imagine our faces when, after 24 hours on a plane and waiting in airports, Viçcens and I found ourselves on a tiny plane, that resembled an old antique museum exhibit that seated 30 people. It was so small even the stewardess was bigger than the aisle and she had to bring the passengers their drink, one-by-one. We let out a big sigh of relief when we landed in West Yellowstone and our bike boxes also arrived. We were so excited to be at our destination after traveling for two straight days. Yellowstone's moonscape awaited us with it's unique flair and swarms of huge juicy mosquitoes that bit me on scalp, despite all the hair that covered it up!

9. Climbing the most mythical road: We rode uphill for 30 miles on “The Going to The Sun Road”. It's no wonder they call it what they do. We started climbing at 6:30 am because they close the road to bike traffic at 11am. In the morning it was 3C (38F) and even with all our layers of clothing, we were still cold!!! But little-by-little, as the road went up, we started warming up and thoroughly enjoyed the scenery in Glacier National Park. What a beautiful climb! We couldn't stop taking pictures and before we knew it, had pedaled the 40 km to the top, arriving at 10:55. Just in the nick of time! Little did we know, on the other side, the road was not paved.  Descending was like having a mud bath that ended up covering us from head to toe, our panniers, and our bikes. Therefore, after a long day, that turned out to be extremely hot, we set up an assembly line to wash our bikes and gear at our host's house that evening.


Geting to Logan Pass top on time! 10'55!!
 

8. The most “religious” moment: During our second day pedaling in Montana, we stayed with a Mormon family. It was the first time that I had ever met someone from this religion, and I was pleasantly surprised. I thought they would be extremists having some radical American ideals, but while I talked with the father, I realized that although he had more traditional ideas about the role of men and women in today's society, he wasn't radical with his political views at all! A funny moment came when we were all ready to eat and we realized that they said grace before eating. It was the first time in my life that I witnessed and participated in grace, but for them it was an everyday occurrence. It was neat to see how they genuinely wished us luck on our travels and expressed how much they appreciated our visit.

7. The most positive thoughts: Does thinking positively really work???  You bet it does!!!! As some of you know already, I had problems with my back wheel and the weight of my panniers. Just after arriving in Yellowstone, 20km into the trip, I got two flat tires back-to-back. Thankfully Viçens noticed that the rim tape didn't cover up the spoke holes correctly and we went around the inside of the wheel with packaging tape to reinforce the rim tape.  The “quick fix” worked along with some positive thoughts. On the first day in Yellowstone, I said to myself, “It'll work!” In reality, in the park, it had to, we couldn't do much more!

Fixing one of many punctures....
Everything went well for a few days, but then there was a heat wave, in Glacier Park.  After coming back from a hike, I got another flat tire, this time it burst with the heat! We changed the tube again, only to puncture twice the next day. On the following day, on Canadian soil, when everyone realized the temperatures were high once again, all of a sudden, I got another flat tire! It was so hot we found a shady place in a yard and it became quite a comical scene. After a lot of tests, and changing the tire three times, we were all ready to go, just when Melissa noticed that she had a flat tire. Rather than loosing our patience we all started laughing and couldn't stop! The neighbors watching couldn't believe what they were witnessing and offered us some cold drinks  After pedaling for 10 km, I got another flat tire which is when we decided I would hitch hike to our destination and go to a bike store to have it fixed. Our positive thoughts worked well because after 2 minutes on the road, a man and his wife with a bike rack pulled over, put my bike on the roof rack, and drove me to the bike store in Cranbrook where I got it fixed. There you have it, positive thought really does work!

6. The most emotional moment:  On the 23rd of July, Melissa's eleven month anniversary of her trip, we met her in Missoula, Montana. It was an unbelievable feeling to hear Melissa screaming as we pedaled up to The Adventure Cycling Organization. Viçens had made t-shirts with a design of her cycling, and we surprised her by wearing them when we arrived.  However she was so excited to see us, she didn't notice the shirts. It was fun to see her reaction when she looked at the shirts and started to scream again!!! While that was the most exciting time of the trip, the saddest moment occurred when we said our good-byes at Mount Robson. We had had such a wonderful time together, we knew we were going to miss being together. It was a strange feeling to all go our separate ways after being together 24 hours a day, 15 days in a row. When we split up, we would each look behind ourselves, and felt as though something was missing.  

A few moments after our reunion at a photo shoot...the adventure begins!
5. The most entertaining hosts: The contrast between the people we met, including our hosts, their cultures and mind sets was fascinating. One day, we found ourselves eating breakfast with our Mormon hosts, and during the evening we were eating dinner and staying with hosts with completely different ideals.   In Montana, we stayed with hosts we nicknamed “The Cowboys” even though they weren't cowboys at all, they just lived on a beautiful piece of property in the countryside where they enjoyed life on a farm in rural Montana. When we arrived they were anxious to hear our stories, but we left immediately to go to the town Rodeo (driving their car that had a gun in a holster hanging over the driver seat). It wasn't until afterwards that we explained to them our trip while indulging in the pizza party they had for us. It was an enjoyable evening, and so was the following day when they took us tubing on their boat at a nearby reservoir.
The pizza partty!

4. The best food: we were so lucky to have great hosts and they made us the most delicious meals: a pizza and taco party with Teri Ann, the never-ending dinner with our hosts in East Glacier, hamburgers and nachos at our farewell dinner at the brewery in Jasper, the cans of sweet Canadian baked beans, canned chili....... But the best of all for me was the 1,5 liter tub of ice cream we shared after pedaling for six hours!!!

El nostre camping més bonic
3. The best camping: In Montana, we were lucky to have a host every night, while in Canada we camped. The first night was memorable: a picnic dinner in the park and then we looked for a place to hide our tents (which was a definite learning experience) but ended up behind a small church, which was actually quite luxurious with running water and a plug outside to charge our electrical devices. Even though we had all the amenities there, the most beautiful spot was in front of Castle Rock, south of Lake Louise. The campsites in Banff and Jasper park were full and we had no other option than to risk a fine and be thrown out of the park free camping. What did they expect us to do? Cycle 200 km to the next vacant campsite? Therefore, for the next three days, we risked being fined or found by bears and wild camped in the park where it was prohibited. It was pretty impressive to see the sun set and rise with this massive rock in the backdrop.

2. The time we laughed the hardest: There were many of times when we couldn't stop laughing, when we passed gas, when Viçens' bike that went tumbling down hills, when the girls were just being girls,.....but of most honorable mention on this top ten list is our tubing experience in Montana with Teri Ann and Ron. We laughed and screamed for ten minutes behind the boat and then another ten minutes watching the video they recorded of us tubing. Tubing involves attaching a giant inner tube/air mattress to the back of a boat that you sit on while the boat drags you around a lake at top speeds. It's like wake boarding but for the uncoordinated and clumsy! 


Vicenç and I moments before realised what tubing involved....
1. The most complete day: For me, the best day on the trip was at Lake Louise because of all the different things we did and the time spent laughing. We woke up in front of Castle Rock at 6am to pack-up quickly without being caught, and pedaled 30 km to Lake Louise where we ate breakfast, restocked our food, and connected to the Internet for awhile. Afterwards, we rode up to the lake, locked our bikes and visited the Lake Louise (which despite the crowds is still spectacular) and hiked up the valley to Six Glaciers. On the way down we met up with some of Melissa's friends who invited us to drinks and nachos, which were delicious and we devoured quickly. They insisted that we try out the spa and pool at their luxurious hotel, and helped us “sneak” in.  We took advantage of the hotel facilities also had a nice long hot showers (after having gone a few days without bathing). Lastly, they recommended we go camp up at Lake Morraine, which we also thought was good idea considering so many other places were full. 

After leaving the spa completely relaxed and refreshed at 8pm, we hopped on our bikes and pedaled uphill for 10km on a spectacular road that led us to the lake; as we pedaled we admired the view of sunset over the mountains, justifying the difficult climb up to the lake for the views. But when we arrived to the lake, a surprise awaited us: there was no official campground, only a luxurious resort we couldn't afford.   After laughing for a good while about our mistake, already dark, we decided to look for a place to hide and camp. It was next to a picnic table, hidden in a thick forest, with our food hung in trees 200 meters away, because we were in bear territory. We managed to not get caught that night free camping in a national park, nor eaten by a bear!


After get over our free camping night in a area crowded by bears in Lake Louis!

And so you have it, my top ten list from the “The 3 Amic” trip. I could explain many more tales about our trip together because we are three totally different people who knew how to adapt to each other and understand one another when it came to making decisions and keeping in mind the interests of each. That was the secret to our successful bike adventure, because as you know, it isn't always easy to travel in a small group. However, I'd even say that we went from being three cycling companions to three good friends, by the end of the trip, forming a stronger bond after traveling together for two weeks! As a wise person once told me: the more you sweat together, the stronger your bond becomes! (translated in English, it doesn't rhyme).
  
A night at the rodeo, Columbia Falls, Montana