21 June 1997

Day 8 - Chestnut [near Bozeman], MT to Big Timber, MT

Distance travelled: 57.5 miles
Winds:
none
Grades:
Up and down
Weather:
Forenoon fair; Slight rain afternoon
Condition of roads:
Good
Delays:
Bicycles – 15m/Tires – 0/Lunch –3h 20m/Other – 2h 10m
Actual travel time:
8h 30m
Rate per hour:
6.8 mph
- Lt. James Moss Report to Adjutant General Synopsis of the Trip

Places & times mentioned: Chestnut [close to Bozeman]; Livingston; Big Timber [5:15 pm]; Boulder River, few miles past Big Timber, Montana [camp]

“The next morning at 6:40 o’clock we were on the summit of the mountain range between Bozeman and Livingston, our next ration station, which was made by 9:15 o’clock. Crossing the Yellowstone river and then riding for miles within plain view of its blue waters, we arrived at Big Timber shortly after 7 o’clock, and fifteen minutes later went into camp on the banks of the Boulder River. The cyclometer registered fifty-eight miles more than it did in the morning.”
- Lt. Moss, Los Angeles Times The Army A-Wheel, Nov. 7, 1897

“An early start was made Monday morning and after crossing the range of mountains separating the waters of the Missouri and Yellowstone rivers and passing through a rocky canyon, we had a down hill road to Livingston, where we received rations for the next two days. Our stay at this place extended over an hour. The populace turned out en masse to look us over and inspect the bicycles. The road out of Livingston leads over a bridge at the foot of the main street, then east along the railroad and was in excellent condition. The grade slightly downhill and good progress was made. We ran along until 12:30 when we camped for lunch and rest. Leaving at 4 o’clock we had the same good roads and made good time up to within four miles of Big Timber, where the road and prairie was covered with large boulders, making the riding very rough and uncertain as well as slow. A few of the Big Timber wheelmen met us a short distance from that place and advised us about the road farther on. The corps reached Big Timber at 5:15 and stopped a few minutes. An enthusiastic old veteran insisted that the boys had to have a drink and accordingly called them all over to a neighboring bar. The corps left this thriving little town soon after, intending to push on some eight miles before going into camp. We had gone on about a mile when a great storm arose and we put back to the Boulder River which we had just crossed, and made camp for the night. Traveled 57 1/2 miles.
- E.H. Boos Daily Missoulian From Fort to Fort [Missoula, MT] July 10, 1897

Swaddles with Wheels.
Lieut. Moss, Dr. Kennedy and 20 colored soldiers of the Twenty-fifth infantry of Fort Missoula, passed through here on bicycles about 10 o'clock Monday morning en route to Billings, whence they will go southward along the route of the Burlington railway to their destination at St. Louis. Each soldier is riding a Spaulding bicycle, specially manufactured for the government to be used on this trial trip for the purpose of testing their practicability for future army use. The company is carrying with them their muskets and several rounds of cartridges, necessary provisions, cooking utensils, clothing, bedding and tents, the average weight to each man being about 55 pounds. If the weather permits, they will average about 45 miles a day and expect to reach St. Louis in six weeks. Edward Boos of Missoula is accompanying them as special correspondent.
- Livingston Herald, June 24, 1897

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