Written by: Diane Maidt
Eastern Montana is not flat. My husband, Dave and I have backpacked in western Montana and I always had the impression that eastern Montana was flat and dry. Today we biked from Miles City to Baker with an elevation gain of 3,800 feet. We started the day with 800 feet of elevation gain and saw hills and trees in the distance. I pondered as I rode how this relates to other things in our lives. We get impressions of people or places that stick unless we really get to know them.
As we got closer to Baker it did get a little flatter. I climbed a big bale of hay to celebrate our getting near the town. Then, we had another surprise. We found out that there is an oil industry around Baker.
We had a warm reception in Baker. The Baker Assembly of God church provided a wonderful barbeque dinner with lots of homemade salads and desserts for us. It was fun to meet and talk with one of the local women, Sherry, who had just completed a cross country ride from San Diego, California to St. Augustine, Florida. Two of the church members, Allen and Marissa, took a few of us on an informative tour around the area explaining how the equipment we could see in the fields extracted the oil.
One of the fun things about these trips is getting to meet the friendly people in the communities where we stay and find out what they do and what is happening in their communities. Another fun thing is discovering new insights about the areas we ride through.