Into the dessert

Lillooet to Cache Creek (21/04/2017)

As ever the road day started with a long up hill, this time going on for about 12km, but it was rideable in a lowish gear.  As you leave the town (past the vineyard that isn’t in my guide book!) you enter First Nation territory again. on the decent from the hill as ever I took the opportunity to rest the legs and I noticed that the ground had changed from predominantly granite to a sandy shale type of soil (sure one of my friends who studied geology will correct me on this!) and the there amount of large pines thinned out and more sage bush’s and scrub brush appeared, in one of the fields I am sure I even saw tumble weeds, I was into the semi arid dessert region.

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Fraser River on the exit of Lillooet

The next hour passed riding on flat ground between scattered houses in glorious sunshine. I had a break at a “gas” station and had a snack and cold drink, no rush today as its a shorter day. I am struggling to remember anything of mush interest over the next section of the route as it was another long shallow hill up to Pavilion and the very interesting valley with Marble Canyon, and looks great fun for a day or so of scrambling of climbing!

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Marble Canyon area

I also had the pleasure of watching Golden Eagles playing in just above the trees at this point so had a break to watch for a while before the last stretch to Cache Creek.

On entering Cache Creek I was somewhat surprised that the whole town was effectively one large service station, I checked in at the sage motel checked on the sunburn from the day (I hadn’t bought suntan lotion yet so was a tad pink and even blistered on one elbow!) and  headed out to find some food, it was about 5pm by this time and everything seems too close early!

I rested up another day here, I am tired. Physically I could go on but my eyes just don’t want to open and the next day of riding is a long one.

A bit about Cache Creek

The name is derived, apparently, from a cache or buried and hidden supply and trade goods depot used by the fur traders of either the Hudson’s Bay Company or its rival the North West Company.

Cache Creek to Kamloops

Its a warm start again, so I have hath slathered on the suntan lotion, I cant afford to get any more burnt! Got to say today has been a boring day on the whole, most of it has been on the main road flanked by fields and very similar looking sandy hills. There was an interesting attraction along the way which is a mock up of an old town at Deadman Junction Ranch, unfortunately it was closed otherwise I would have spent a few mins being nosey, but I am early in the season! O and if you are wondering about the name, the local river is called Deadman River. The rivers name dates back to 1817, when Pierre Charette of the North West Company was killed by his travelling companion in a quarrel over the campsite.

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Deadman Junction Ranch

I again stopped at a gas station for a soft drink and chocolate bar mid morning before turning off the main road up Deadman Vidette Road. It was nice to be away from the main route and the views were great. I cycled passed Skeetchestn Indian Band surrounding ranches on a mix of asphalt and dirt roads which was great fun… although a bolt came of the bike from somewhere and I couldn’t find where till the end on the day it turned out to only be a connector from rear rack to the bike thankfully!

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Deadman Vidette Road

I was supposed to take a small road called Johnson Road that connects onto a small system of roads that would bring me into North Kamloops but it turned out to be a loose gravel forestry track that I didn’t fancy pushing the bike up so it was another 10km back to the main road and an up till struggle along Route 1 but the view over Kamploops Lake made it worth while!

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Kamloops Lake

Not long after the view of the lake the heavens opened for about 10mins but I had seen the clouds coming so had chucked a jacket on quickly, thankfully I have learned were certain things are in the panniers now! As the rain poured down I felt that maniacal smile coming over my face as it sometimes does in these conditions, what on Earth could be better than getting a drenching while cycling up another incline??? I am not sure if it was just the rain and the hill but drivers were encouraging me on again.

The route in to Kamloops brought me through first an industrial area (nice…) then through suburbia on the hills above the city (nice!) before working my way through the centre to my accommodation on Victoria Street. A dinner in the rather nice Noble Pig brewery and kitchen was had (burger and poutine) the food was good and, god, the portion sizes were generous!

 

 

 

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