West Yellowstone to Jackson, WY


We ride back over Targhee Pass, and while it’s still chilly, it’s much better than the day before, even if only that it’s not snowing. I’m still navigating, and will for the entire 8 days that I get to ride with Molly and Tammy. I lead us to Ashton where we stop for hot tea and some souvenir shopping, or at least a laugh at the souvenirs for sale.

  
The Teton Scenic Byway is a stunning road that carries us southeast toward Driggs and Victor and Highway 22 that will take us over Teton Pass to Jackson, Wyoming. We catch brief glimpses of the peaks under the thick blanket of clouds lingering on the ridge line. 

Our bikes slow and strain on the long climb up from Victor to Teton Pass. But persistence pays off with a sunning view from the top.

 
   

  
Molly has friends of her family who live in Jackson, and they have generously offered us a place to stay for the night. We stop in town for some lunch and a wander before going to Kate and Brad’s. 

   
    
    
  

On the way to Montana, my Dad was telling me about a time when he and my mom were first married, and they went to Jackson for a few days of vacation. They stopped at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar. It’s a sweet story, so I stop by to see it and send a photo to my Dad. It makes me happy.

Late in the afternoon, Molly leads us out of town to her friends ranch, just a few miles away. A sweet Corgi and a giant slobbery bloodhound greet us.

   
    
 

I ride back to town and pick up some groceries for us since we have been offered the most beautiful cottage, complete with kitchen, for the night. Wine, salmon, Swiss chard, yams and a green salad all taste especially good after a few days of dehydrated camp food. 

After a luxurious nights sleep, we each enjoy a lazy morning in the cottage and ooh and ahh over the incredible view of the valley and Tetons from the windows. Our bikes were parked in individual horse stalls in Kate’s barn last night and I walk over to say good morning to the barns normal occupants. Loki trots along, keeping me company.

   
    
    
   
   
We dry our tents in the sun and repack them.  

 
Molly has another friend, who lives and hour away and has invited us to come listen to him play Bluegrass music at a local bar. Sounds fantastic to me. As we start to shape our plans, Kate generously offers us the cottage for another night. Molly suggests we stay here for another night, and since it’s such a lovely oasis, we all agree.

Our threesome heads back over the pass to Driggs, Idaho for just the evening, to see Ben, and Ted and Greg at Warbirds. After not finding the place on our own five-minute tour of Driggs, a kind local directs us to the airport. Warbirds is there, attached to a hanger.

We settle into a table as the guys set up. As I peruse the wine list, a great roar blasts through the wall of windows behind me. I turn to catch the blurry engine fire of a Mig 17 as it flies just above the deck, buzzing the hanger we are in. Warbirds overlooks the runway, and we watch small planes land and unload…people are flying in just for dinner. How amazing is this?!

   
    
    
    
    
 
Bluegrass is one of my favorite kinds of music, and these guys are fantastic. We sit and enjoy them for a couple of hours, and spend their break time out in the hanger enjoying the fantastic collection of planes owned by a private local collector, a retired Navy man. The Mig 17 did touch and gos for a while before calling it a night. These planes aren’t just for show, each takes regularly exercise in the skies over Driggs.

The restaurant and bar are packed. Good food and music will gather a crowd. A couple who have stopped while traveling through, are also musicians and the husband, Dan, plays his guitar on a few songs too. After the band calls it a night, Dan and his wife sing our trio a beautiful rendition of Here Comes the Sun…it’s lovely. I’m in awe of these people, their talent, and this magical night. Thank you, to them all, for making it an incredible memory.

 

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1 comment

  1. Such lovely experiences to enrich your trip! The farm and cottage sound lovely, and any unexpected night of music, not to mention the airport and old planes, is magical!

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