Missoula's Val-U Inn was spotless and an excellent choice. After yesterday's push, I took a slow start to the day, catching up on some daily maintenance of both man and machine. Against my better judgement, I tried the free hotel breakfast, but only managed four instant pancakes, and orange juice, and a banana for the road before concluding it was healthier to not eat. I do not hold the Val-U Inn responsible for this; rather, I deem it a systematic issue with the North American hotel breakfast industry. I indulged my shoulders and back and ankles in the hot tub before gearing up; it was literally around the corner from my room, so how could I not, right? I hit the road, stopping shortly at the service station at the Lolo intersection to top up oil, clean and lube my chain. There were bikes everywhere! Roughly 10 in the gas station when I pulled in -- some cruisers, some tourers, some dual-sporters. I haven't mentioned it, but it's been motorcycle city since the streets of Nelson, actually, all the way through. (I guess I found everyone; they're in Idaho...)
I stayed on US 12 through Lowell to Kooskia, then took 13 and 95 south through Grangeville, White Bird Hill, and the Salmon River Canyon into Riggins (pop. 410) for the night. The motel sign reads "Dogs and horses OK."
Day total: 353 km, 6h35m
Trip total: 3491 km
Start: Missoula, MT. End: Riggins, ID.
Soundtrack: Foo Fighters, Norah Jones, Counting Crows.