Friday, June 29, 2012

Days 11 & 12 - The Hump/Give-and-Take

A great sign.
One disorienting part of the trip is not living within the week cycle. Every day is "go"!, and we rest when we are able. So as we have paid close attention to the weather, we are again aware of the day of the week. So happy Friday readers! But this blog is about Wednesday - hump day.  Wednesday was our hump day, because of the weather. It was the third day of the rain, but the worst was over, and we saw a forecast that indicated sunshine again by the weekend. So things were looking "up"!

But the day started with setbacks. As you know from the day before, the first task is to fix Kyle's rack. Good and bad news: it turns out that he also has broken spokes, and we all replace our rear shift cables and casings. But the staff at Jessome's Source for Sports in Edmundston takes fantastic care of us. Thanks so much!! We won't actually hit the road until almost noon.
The ride is nice but still wet. We take Hwy 2, a closed access highway that allows cyclists. This gives us the great advantage of a well-paved wide shoulder, somewhat flattened hills, and no stops. We are able to get up to 22-25km/hr, but with the late start, all we can accomplish is Grand Falls, for 77km on the forced half-day. Behind schedule again!

Kyle taking cover under an awning
We would wake up the next day (Thursday) early, to try to take back some time lost the day before. And by early, I'm talking about 5:00am (4:00am EST). We still move slowly in the morning, and with some alignment issues we are on the road by 6:15. But this start was the worst of the four; it was actually raining when we left, and we knew we were in for a long day.

By our rest stop at 9:00am, we had already put in as many kilometres as the day before. But after a misty but not rainy morning, again it rained, and again we found ourselves under a ledge at a gas station. Inside, we delay going outside by convincing ourselves into an unsatisfying 3-for-the-price-of-2 chocolate bar deal. But this is not the low point that it was two days earlier; rather, as we leave, we see an old friend that we have missed, peeking out from the clouds. No words to describe!

The next several hours are fantastic. On-and-off showers, but lots of sun, and some dry roads! We're just cruising along, and by the time we saw a Fredericton 114 sign, we knew we were going for it. And go for it, we did! 220kms on the day, another new high, and we made it to the capital. But not without some hiccups...

We're experts, now.
We hit three flat tires in the last 40km, all tire-related, but we ran out of collapsible spare tires. So we're 19km from the city, and while we're deciding what to do, Tyler flags down a passing motorist, who gives Kyle, his bike, and all of our panniers to a nearby bike shop. Thanks Paul!
Tyler and I make flat 50km/hr on some stretches, freed of our luggage. We probably made it to the city faster considering the blown tire! The staff at Ski Wolf in Fredericton were fast, helpful, and very kind. Thanks again! Who knew you could patch a tire with duct tape?

And now we're in Fredericton and back on track!

That's the gist of it, a recap in the truest sense. We'll try to add more narrative/pics when we get to a computer.

Sent wirelessly from my BlackBerry device on the Bell network.
Envoyé sans fil par mon terminal mobile BlackBerry sur le réseau de Bell.

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