Thursday, July 9, 2009

Back on dry land and pedalling

Arriving at dawn this morning on the ferry, at Prince Rupert, we were ready to burn up some of the energy and fuel we'd stockpiled in the previous 8 days of ferry travel, hanging out in Juneau and stopping off at villages along the way.

After a misty start where we were covered with a fine dew, the sun emerged from behind the mountains and the breeze started to blow on our backs. We hadn't planned to cycle all the way to Terrace, just over 150km away but despite our very minimal sleep (about 4 hours), we somehow did it.

Sunshine, tailwind (28km/hr without effort was a breeze), flat road, wildflowers, spread out rest stops, many waterfalls, unfolding valleys the broad waters of the Skeena River (river of mists) and beautiful mountains (much like in Yosemite) kept us rolling. So too did my mega polenta breakfast after the first easy 40km (polenta, coconut flakes, dried fruit, milk powder, agave nectar and tahini). We found a delectable cafe after 90km (and only 11am) and the still-warm freshly baked pumpkin pie with icecream kept me going almost all the way to Terrace.

The lower mountains and hills are heavily scarred from logging in this area, more so than anywhere else so far. The clear-felled areas are all covered with new growth but very obvious and the zigzagging roads carved into the hills mar the otherwise picturesque terrain.

I saw my first black bear today, crossing the road between Robert and me soon after a failed attempt at having a rest (mosquitos scared us away). Fortunately, the space between us was large, so no risky close encounter. My bear spray is still within quick and easy reach.

Robert and I have agreed that the distance we did today with so little sleep is not sustainable so that record won't be broken in a hurry. I don't like to think about how we'll feel in the morning.

I've just got an email message from Robert that the local warm showers folk are happy to have us to stay and have a baby that needs to sleep. Only another 5km to go, then bed!

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