We followed the Salmon River from Stanley to Salmon, where we did a bit of googling for 'what's on Montana'. Finding both an adventure cycling festival and live music at a vineyard determined it was going to be a busy day ahead. We crossed the mountainous border into Montana and enjoyed the ranch land scenery (and the sight of all those guns and ammo shops) for a while before parking up for the night next to the Bitterroot river. A busy wee spot it turned out, as indeed every corner of every river in Montana seemed to be. They even teach 'fisheries' in school and fishing is the most popular kids summer camp activity here.

The next day I was up early to join in a local bike ride to celebrate the completion of a new bike path between Hamilton and Missoula. I took advantage of the home baking at the aid stations and enjoyed telling people I was from a whole other Hamilton! It was really nice to see so many cyclists of different ages out and lots of tandems too. There is a nice cycling scene here. Sitting more or less on both the continental divide and the Trans Am route, Missoula is home to the Adventure Cycling HQ and we popped into the office for a quick look around at their vintage bikes and inspiring guest books, photos and magazines. So many places I would like to go.

The other rather interesting place we visited in Missoula was the Smokejumper museum where we were given a tour by a firefighter who was training to jump out of planes and tackle forest fires. It was great to hear someone speak so passionately about a job that's equally important and terrifying.

Wine tasting at local Missoula winery

The rest of our Missoula experienced involved perusing the Farmer's market, wine tasting and hearing about mountain bike trails I could ride if only we had more time! Holidays are never long enough it seems.


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