Well, the ride turned out not to be so bad. Went from 2000 feet to 3500 (approximately) along the Lochsa River on US Highway 12. Could not get moving. The grade is subtle, but it is there. Lochsa means "rough water" in some Indian language. There are rapids roughly every quarter of a mile. In some places I have difficulty hearing the traffic over the sound of the water. Still no truck traffic but there are caravans of RVs clogging the highway
As I expected there were no services for 65 miles. I decided to stop at the Lochsa Lodge in Powell for lunch and continue over Lolo pass into Missoula for a mind-blowing trip of 130 miles. I was told over the phone that the lodge was booked solid, but I thought it worth my while to confirm that in person. Just my luck, someone had checked out and a cabin was available. I wasn't looking forward to another 6 hours of riding anyway. Unfortunately I missed an opportunity to see a hot springs about ten miles back. The springs are off the road about a mile and a half and are accessible only by foot. I couldn't see adding another two hours to my trip so I had to skip them. If the clerk on the phone had told me a room was available yesterday, I would have had plenty of time to see them.
Now that I see my cabin I think I know what happened. The cabin I was assigned has four double beds in it. It's big enough to hold eight people comfortably and I only paid the single occupancy rate of $32. I'm sure they were just waiting to see if a larger group was on its way. I also had a feeling I could get a room here. The three-day weekend is over. All the weekend warriors have to go back to work on Monday. This meant a vacancy was likely. I can hear the river in my cabin even though it's over a quarter-mile away.
The woman checking me in turns out to be from Long Island. The only person I've met that's been to both Rockaway Beaches. "I sing the Ramones song when I go to the Rockaway in Oregon." She recognizes my address as a part of the posh Upper West Side. This just a summer job for her. Her regular gig is as a grad student in Oregon. She lived in Chelsea for a while but had to leave after it got too pricey.
No phones in the cabin so I will post this later.