There are no daytime speed limits in Montana, which means everyone is driving at their own speed. Cars are constantly overtaking one another. No problem, except they jump into oncoming traffic. I am seriously irritated by these Bozos flying toward me at 80 mph on my side of the street. There's enough of a shoulder that I am reasonably safe, but I just don't trust these morons. You can see some of them playing chicken with each other, waiting to see who will dive back into their lane first. What's most irritating are those drivers that refuse to give me any space when they pass and then honk their horn right when they're over my shoulder. Nothing like an earful of car horn several feet from your head. What are they thinking? Is this some sort of safety thing? I'm waiting to meet one of them at an upcoming gas station. I'd walk up right next to their head and scream in their ear when they're not expecting it. "Just trying to be safe."
In a futile effort to reduce weight I mailed some of my road maps to locations along my intended route. One of those locations was Merry's house. Unfortunately I arrived before the maps did. The mail arrived around 10:45 AM with the maps in it. The latest starting time yet, 11:00 AM. Didn't finish until 7:00 PM.
Strolled on down to Montana Highway 200 after a leisurely morning watching television. Two towns right out of Missoula — Boardman and Milltown, guess what the primary economic activity is there — then a long lonely ride on 200. There was only one other town before Lincoln along with an occasional ranch and a couple junctions. The highway stayed near the Blackfoot River but I didn't see much of it. Another big flat expanse between the mountains. Off on one side there was the Bob Marshall Wilderness; a couple craggy peaks with a dusting of snow left on them. Big ranches, but I didn't see many cattle. Saw three cars with flat tires, one seriously shredded. Was also passed by a semitrailer with one blown tire.
Today was mostly uphill. The few downhill parts seemed like a waste of time. Any downhill before the continental divide just makes it that much harder to cross. There was a pretty good tailwind today. I didn't notice it until I did a 180 in Lincoln and hit the wall. Temperatures have been in the high 80s, but I haven't felt the heat. Signs on the highway call this the "High Country". I am now at 4000-something feet with a 5000-something foot pass to cross tomorrow. Should be a piece of cake. It's all downhill after that for miles and miles and miles. If this tailwind keeps up I should be able to start averaging 100 miles; a century a day! Will try for Great Falls tomorrow. It's almost a hundred miles and the first 50 are devoid of towns.