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Intrepid Journey

In April 2006 I randomly offered companionship to a fellow blogger in his dream to cycle Across Canada from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean. Much to my surprise he accepted that offer and 4 weeks later I find myself on the adventure of my life cycling upwards of 100km a day and living life to the fullest. 

Sunday, May 28, 2006

11:44 am - Hope to Vernon, BC

Well, the climb out of Hope took us 2.5 hours to the Hope slide. We took a turn off to look-see to be reminded of North Wales - a pile of rocks and durky mist. Andrew discovered on the climb what happens when you don't feed Andrea and things nearly got nasty until a granola bar saved the day. The weather continued to be nasty all day, only to be capped by the news that the hot showers campsite just beyond the Allison Summit (1300m) was still closed due to snow. But still... we were at the Manning Park Ski resort and I've always wanted to stay therre - and had earned it after all with all that climbing so we slurged and enjoyed the luxuries of not only a hot shower but a hot tub, hot steam room and hot sauna. Phew! We very nealy didn't leave the next day as we watched steam pour off the roof of the pool building.

Next day, coming down the maountain to Keremeos we clocked 27km/hr average (instead of usual 18 kph) over a distance of 139km. There was some point in the day where we decided that stopping in Hedley at a roadside campsite (100km along the line) was not a good idea and instead we should continue another 32km into the rain and stay in Keremeos. Despite this poor forethought, our sorry drenched asses encouraged the campsite owner to offer us the $40 a night cabin for $25 so we could stay (and get) dry. YESSSS. That place is going in the lonely planet - next edition.

Things were slightly brighter next day and we stopped in Curly's snack shack (just to find out if it really is as wrong as it seems) but no, it was very pleasant, very clean and not a curly wurly in sight. The ride to Penticton was easy for me (amazing what 766km does for the perspective of your own back yard) and after all, it was only 50km away. Due to an impromptu rain storm in the mountain on the way down, we rode straight past work at first and to the laundrette to do much needed laundry and tumble-drying. Caught up mainly with office-people, chores in town (like replacing the towel I lost 4 days ago - I have been getting dry on the tea towel!) and buying our hosts for the night a stiff beer and wine as thanks for us gorging ourselves on the luxuries of four solid walls.

Leaving Penticton on a Saturday, the ride to Kelowna was tough but then took back roads to Winfield to avoid the horror of strip malls and the airport. Pushing the 100km mark again, we opted for 8 extra kms to get us out of Winfield and into Oyama, a lovely little village nestled between two lakes. The RV park was a little over-the-top though so we continued on up to the Owl's Nest campsite - a superior spot by the lake, peace, tranquility, no rain (though we watched it rain on the RV-ers) and apparently no steward either so a free night's stay.

From Vernon, we're on up to Malakwa then tomorrow to Canyon Hot Springs (more hot water) nestled in the mountains between Revelstoke and Golden. It's going to be a tough few days...

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