Monday, June 24, 2013

Day 43: Biting Into Ontario

By on Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 2:00 PM

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We continue through lake country, setting out with a bellyfull of Quinn's winning banana pancakes and thick cut Harvest bacon. (Melt the syrup with the butter in the microwave. You'll never go back.) Once again we have our work cut out for us facing an East wind. The weather is reminiscent more of Newfoundland than Ontario: misty, dank and cool. The road is again a concern, with shoulders as narrow as a foot in spots and plenty of semi traffic. Most drivers are charitable, pulling way our when passing, but some are oblivious. I caught up with one auto carrier who passed within a couple of feet of me at a truck stop ahead and gave him a bit of my Irish Ire. Maybe he'll give the next cyclist a wider birth.

Rolling forested hills, the odd creek and lake and clear-cut patches are our terrain today. Once in a while the Shield has been blasted away to make way for the road. This leaves basalt cuts, usually grey and carbon, but occasionally cuts through pink granite seams that glisten even through the 4 layers of tint on my pricey Maui Jim's.

The weather worsens and we pull Gin over to have her put on an iridescent vest. She labours and we try to follow as best we can without holding up traffic. At least she has had a dry ride, but as soon as she pulls over, I saddle up in my rain jacket to face a dark curtain on the horizon. Throw in a visibility challenge, the rain and stream of semi traffic and it all adds up to a grunt into Upsalla. Upsalla, named after a Swedish city, harbours still many of Nordic ancestry and we swing into a pleasant campsite on a picturesque lake. We wanted to go further today to cut the long 145km ride into Thunder Bay, where we have several rallies, speeches, book signings and motor home repairs, but given the weather, we hunker down for the night.

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