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Bozeman man conquers 2.7K trail on unicycle, raising awareness f - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Montana man conquers 2.7K trail on unicycle, raising awareness for justice

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For 79 days Gianforte shared those sunsets and along the way raised a little more than $11,000 - one wheel at a time. (MTN photo) For 79 days Gianforte shared those sunsets and along the way raised a little more than $11,000 - one wheel at a time. (MTN photo)
BOZEMAN -

The Great Divide Trail is the country’s longest Canada-to-Mexico mountain bike trail.

This summer, one Bozeman man decided he was going to half-way tackle the trail. No, he didn't decide to go half-way - he simply road the entire trail on half a bike.

“The first week or so I had severe knee pain and had to get knee braces and stuff. I just kind of figured it out as I went along,” said Adam Gianforte, cross-country unicycle rider.

Yes - unicycle rider.

The Great Divide Trail is more than 2,700 miles of pedaling, with a total of 200,000 feet of climbing. Gianforte said he rode for himself and for International Justice Mission, an organization he crowd sourced as a fundraiser.

“They have lawyers to prosecute human traffickers around the world, especially in hot spots where there is a lot of human trafficking like Cambodia and India,” said Gianforte. “And then also on the Social Work side where they help victims of human trafficking get back on their feet and start new lives and find jobs and things.”

Gianforte said he tried to prepare for all conditions. Nothing prepared him for the Goatheads of New Mexico.

“There's just these little thorns and they've got multiple thorns sticking out in different directions so no matter which way they land there's always a thorn sticking up,” he said. “And I was trying to make up some time, I was a little behind schedule and I got like three flats in one day and I was very inexperienced in changing tires so it took me like two hours the first time to change the tire. I actually ran out of patches and I was out in the middle of nowhere where no cars were going by and so I eventually started like gluing on the outside of my tube just to try and keep the thorn in there to seal it up.”

“There's something about the unicycle that sort of... it’s very intriguing to people and it kind of breaks down those initial social barriers,” Gianforte adds. “There was one time I was riding through Pietown, New Mexico and there was a guy standing out on his porch and he said, ‘Hey, come have a margarita with me’ so I went and sat and watched the sunset and talked about life.

For 79 days Gianforte shared those sunsets and along the way raised a little more than $11,000 - one wheel at a time.

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