Day 15: Ontario, OR to Park City, UT

Today was not one of the better days of the trip, but we made the best of it anyways. To start the day off, it was raining when we woke up, which was a surprise to us, because we were unaware that there was a chance of rain this morning. After looking at the radar and the hourly forecast for where we were and the direction we were going, we finally decided to go ahead and load up and head out about 9am.

What we had assumed would be a little bit of light rain that would clear up shortly after we left ended up being about 45 miles of rain that got progressively heavier until we got pretty much poured on right before we got to Boise, Idaho. We had put our rain jackets on before we left, but we decided not to put our pants on because we didn’t think it would rain that heavy, and we hate messing with our rain pants because they are a pain to get on and off. Once again, we were wrong, and our legs and butts got wet, which was very cold in the 51 degree weather.

We had to stop in Boise to get gas, and we just did get back on the road before the rain caught back up with us. A short distance later the skies cleared up and the sun came out, which I was so thankful for, as it warmed both myself and the temperature. Our pants and gloves eventually dried out (I am buying Gore-Tex gloves first thing when I get home!) and we assumed the rest of the day would be easy riding.

We were wrong again. Not long after Boise, it started to get windy, and it continued to get more and more windy the further we went. At times it felt as though I might drag a sidecase just trying to go straight. It was awful, and not at all enjoyable. We both had neck and shoulder pain by the end of the day from our heads getting blown around, and my hands and arms hurt from holding on to the bars too tight.

We did get a bit of a break after 84 and 15 merged together, but after 84 split off again, we started hitting heavy wind again. To make matters worse, Utah has a real problem with sealing the cracks in their roads with what we like to call “Tar Snakes”. Most states use this sealer, we have it back home in Indiana too, but most places do not apply it as thick as they do here in Utah. The problem with it is that when it gets warm out, the tar gets soft and becomes very slippery for a motorcyclist. It can make your tires feel like they are going to slip out from under you, and it can cause you to get a bit squirelly. Unfortunately a few of the very windy sections also had a ridiculous amount of tar snakes that made it impossible to avoid them, and the combination of wind and tar was definitely not a fun situation. We slowed down well below the speed limit and did our best to stay off of the vertical snakes, as they are much worse than the horizontal snakes are.

Thankfully we made it to the hotel okay, and we were both releived and happy to be there. After getting in our room and getting cleaned up, we walked next door to a shopping center where there was an Irish pub that sounded good. We shared a bowl of clam chowder for an appetizer that was fantastic, and then I got a panko and parmesan crusted trout filet with steamed spinach and rice, and Dwayne got the fried fish and chips. He was disappointed after he tried my trout and wished that he had ordered that instead, though. Not that his wasn’t good, but my trout was some of the best I have ever had. It tasted so fresh and it was prepared perfectly. It was just absolutely delicious. I would eat it once a at least once a week if I lived here, haha!

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Tomorrow we are taking US-40 all the way to Steamboat Springs, Colorado, and the plan is to be on the road by 7am, since they are calling for heavy winds again tomorrow starting after 10am, and especially after noon. We are hopeful that if we leave early, we can get at least halfway to Steamboat before the winds start to pick up, and I don’t think it is supposed to be quite as bad closer to Steamboat as it is supposed to be here.

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