Day 19 Stinking Water River

This morning’s ride was the opposite of this afternoon’s ride. We left at sunrise and had a 50 mile downhill run to Cody, Wyoming. The wind was at our back. Traffic was non-existent and the valley was chock full of rock formations like this:

And like this:

You get the idea. We were in the Shoshone River valley and the river runs through a volcanically active region and has a sulfur smell. On old maps of Wyoming it was called the Stinking Water River.

Here is a view of the Buffalo Bill Reservoir on the Shoshone River.

We stopped at the Buffalo Bill dam which when it was constructed in 1910 was the world’s tallest (325 feet). It took three attempts and 200 Italian immigrants to get it built. They finally figured out that they had to build it in the winter when the water was frozen because the diversion dams kept getting washed away in the spring floods.

The folks at the dam visitor’s center opened a gate which allowed us to cycle down an access road to the river below. The views were stupendous (opening photo).

After lunch in Cody, we continued to head East. It was a long, gradual climb. The country side was featureless semi-arid desert.

Then the wind changed and was in our face and then from the side. The Wyoming Department of Transportation conveniently installed mile markers so that you could tell you were traveling somewhere.

Tonight we are staying in Basin, Wyoming, population 1,282. it is in the middle of the Bighorn Basin and a county seat.


  • East Yellowstone entrance to Basin, Wyoming.
  • Distance: 110.3 miles (178 km)
  • Climbing: 2076 feet (633 m)
  • Temperature: 45 – 96°F (7 – 36°C)


5 thoughts on “Day 19 Stinking Water River

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