Continuing in my series of cycling adventures, this one takes us to northern Montana and a little bit of Alberta, Canada. The following is a chronological photo essay of my Montana Biking - Glacier National Park - Inn trip offered by Backroads. All photos, except where otherwise indicated, are by Robert Buffington.
Day 1: Alberta Visitor Center to Lake McDonald Lodge (11 miles)
Day 2: Lake McDonald Lodge to Many Glacier Hotel (60 miles)
Day 3: Many Glacier Hotel to Prince of Wales Hotel [Waterton] (50 miles)
Day 4: Rest day (perhaps because of tomorrow, which is...)
Day 5: Prince of Wales Hotel to Glacier Park Lodge [East Glacier] (77 miles)
Day 6: Glacier Park Lodge to West Glacier (56 miles)
Day 4 - Rest Day
This phlog is dedicated to the Mayer family in memory of Henry Mayer who was on our trip with his wife Betsy. On the Going-to-the-Sun Road as we climbed towards Logan Pass at 6680 feet, Henry suffered a heart attack.
Many of us were ahead of Henry as we wanted to get the big climb behind us, but news was trickling in from drivers who were passing us that there was a cyclist behind us who had a heart attack. This explained the numerous sirens you could hear in the distance. I just assumed that it was a cyclist from another group since there were numerous other groups and independent cyclists on our route. As more news trickled in, I heard that a Backroads vehicle was involved at the scene. Again, I just assumed that our leaders were just there to assist another cyclist, but the sad truth was revealed when one of our leaders, Alexa, stopped to inform me that it was Henry who had the heart attack and that he died immediately at the scene.
I was sitting next to him at the breakfast table that morning. He was joking how he would listen in on the phone conversations with Betsy (an M.D. at Kaiser in Oakland) and her patients and try to figure out what the patient's afflictions were. At times, he said he would answer the phone and offer his advice when Betsy wasn't around. Ironically, he indicated concern about the amount of cholesteral offered at the breakfast buffets at the lodges we were staying at. Of course, we just laughed it off and said it won't make much of a difference the next few days while we are riding 60 miles a day. After that, we loaded up our bikes and headed out. I never saw him again after that morning.
The newspaper article is from The Daily Inter Lake from Kalispell, Montana, vol. 93, no. 105, dated Friday, July 28, 2000. The photo was taken from the Library of Congress web page https://www.loc.gov/loc/lcib/9812/cfb.html.