Swapping snow for sand: Montana to Utah

“You don’t have to practice being miserable”. These were the wise words of Conrad, our AirBnb host in Helena, Montana. We had started the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route in Banff with all the intention of riding the whole way to Antelope Wells, New Mexico, where the venerable ride ends. We knew it was late in the season to start the ride, but hoped we would be lucky, and that winter would come late to the mountains. Many times along the trail we had met people who were surprised that we were starting so late in the year. As the weather became cooler and we ran into our first patches of snow, we kept telling ourselves that it would warm up again, that this time of year often swings between c