I finally get outside for more training!
04.04.2008 - 11.04.2008 8 °C
The start of our trip is edging closer and closer... it’s less than a month now til Mary Anne and I fly west, and only a little more than a month until we actually head out from Vancouver. This is great motivation for more training rides, and though I continue to go to spinning classes 3 or 4 times a week, I’ll always prefer riding outside!
On April 4 I set out to Grafton, a tiny little town beyond Kentville. I wanted to get 80 km under my belt but ended up only making it to 74 by the time I got back home. When I’m alone on my bike and just riding in a big loop, sometimes it’s hard to find the push to keep going - so I always bring my camera, because I keep thinking, “maybe there’s a neat picture around the next corner... at the top of that hill... if I turn up this road here!” A few times I had to hop off my bike to snap a shot or two - these are some of my favourites:
A lonely swing and beautiful yellow strands of a willow tree
Tree bent and cut to show the headwind I was fighting against - this is why we will travel west to east - with the prevailing wind across Canada!!
The next ride I did (April 9) I managed to convince myself that I should probably add some weight to my bike, but I just couldn’t bring myself to add too much - seems crazy to just throw random things in my paniers to weigh them down when I don’t have to. It’s the first time I’ve ridden with all 4 paniers, my front basket, and my fold-up chair. Don’t laugh, I love my chair! Max had one during Otesha, and I was inspired and got one to save my back - all day on a bike and then trying to support yourself all night around a campfire or eating dinner is rough. The extra weight is so, so worth it.
This trip was amazing. Not only was it the warmest day of the year so far, I had forgotten just how beautiful the view of Blomidon is from the secondary road on the way to Hantsport.
As I was cycling past a particularly gorgeous view, I saw two men enjoying it from their porch and I called out, “Can you BELIEVE we live here!??” They called back, “Pretty amazing in’nit!?” I love that we instantly understood each other. Everyone here is so friendly; everyone waves and says hello. It’s such a completely different feeling from the privacy-sphere most people seem to exude when they’re in a city.
The view and a farm down the hill from where I called out to the men on the porch
Anyways, I settled down to eat my lunch in a sunny park in Hantsport, laughing to myself when I realized that I was actually happy that I had packed my paniers more than I usually do - because I had remembered to bring a book! (My sister and I are both addicted to reading while we eat). I ended up only cycling for 50 km, but what a treat to be out on such a sunny, warm day.
The view I had while I ate my lunch
My latest ride was today, and was the second longest ride I’ve ever done - 96.5 km round trip (however, Mary Anne and I’s ride to Doaktown, 95 km in a constant headwind, fully loaded bikes, and sharing the trailer, was no doubt more challenging)! Josh and I headed out to Ayelsford, about 45 km from Wolfville, depending on how you get there. It was colder than we expected, but sunny, and we were in good spirits - the highway is flat, and we were battling a headwind that promised smooth sailing on the way back. This is the only picture I took the entire trip - cows on top of their own manure pile... soaking up the heat maybe?
We had to laugh when we biked past the rest of the house - just around the corner there was a german shepherd on top of his doghouse - maybe the animals were comparing notes!?
We had a great ride - I’m pooped now, but during the trip I felt like someone was constantly injecting me with liquid energy. It makes such a difference biking with a friend. My stomach is sore from laughing, from the cows on the manure pile, to the sign we saw on the side of the road (“Babies are a gift!! From: God.”) to Josh insisting that we were in Berwick when there was a post office proclaiming “Ayelsford” right across the road.