“Perhaps some day I’ll crawl back home, beaten, defeated”

But thankfully that day isn’t today! I apologise for the photo’s in advance, I haven’t been able to edit them at all.

Thunder Bay to Nipigon(ish) (21st July 2017)

Leaving Thunder Bay I wasn’t able to go on the main road as apparently it gets too narrow, this meant I had to follow Lakeshore Drive which isn’t on the lake shore… in fact you cant even see the lake but it is quite pleasant!

After about an hour I re-joined the highway and the road started to get steeper and more twisty which is fun, but unfortunately less lakes than previously.

In general the terrain in this area consists of sudden sharp rises and steep descents, all these beautiful hills are covered in pine forests interspersed with lakes and rivers. Its rather nice and however hard the ups are the descents are amazing fun as even with a headwind I was clocking up to 60kph.

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As the day went on I got to an area called Red Rock, the clue being in the name here… the road cuttings showed this in all its glory! This was shortly followed by more roadworks, its amazing that there is so much happening in this area but then construction is limited to the summer due to the snow in winter!

There were no campsites and no chance of wild camping round here so I ended up at a motel after 115km it had been a tough but good day on the bike I knew I had pushed the pace too much and tomorrow might be tough.

Nipigon (22nd July 2017)

It wasn’t tough, my legs just didn’t want to work! guess I am sitting today out!

about 10am the rain started… I felt less bad for a day off.

Nipigon(ish) to Rossport (23rd July 2017)

I still ache but I can’t sit around when I can actually move so it was back onto the bike. The views were pretty much the same, that’s no bad thing!

Todays plan is to get to the small town of Rossport, apparently its extremely pretty so why on earth not! nearly 80km of stunning twists and turns and a couple of brutal hills later I pulled into the town and again couldn’t find a camp ground (I’m not good at this am I!) and got a room at a b&b, dinner was at the local restaurant and was one of the nicer meals I have had while out here! I may have had a nap in the evening too… I seem to be tired all the time for some reason.

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Rossport to Neys (24th July 2017)

It’s my Dad’s Birthday today so I gave him a call to start the day. Happy Birthday Dad!

Again similar to the previous few days but in a good way, and possibly more hills with 1061m of ascent in 100km, it doesn’t sound much to mountain folk on foot but on a fully loaded bike its tough!

I stopped at the town of Terrace Bay and had a wander around the beach and rocks, it was the first time I had the chance to actually see the scale of Lake Superior, its is like looking out over the ocean but calmer. I had a wander along the rocks round the cove to have a look see and taste the lake water and had a tad of a fall into a crevice going knee deep and took a bit of a bump but no damage done and was back on the bike in no time. I was tiring at this point though and I was only about 40km in, I was going to camp about 60km ahead so it was a long ride round some lovely lakes and over more hills.

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By the time I got to the campground I was really tired. The ground was so hard I bent some pegs and could only get most in a few inch’s, if the wind got up it could get quite interesting, maybe I should have got a tent that could be free standing… I had the camp “invaded” by people seeing where I was cycling again so quite a social night in camp again, kinda nice!

Just thought a bit about Nays may interest some: During the second world war nays was actually a prisoner of war camp. Most PoW camps were hideous but those in Ontario had a reputation for being quite good places to sit out the war with good rations and not overly harsh guards. It was so good in fact that 25% of PoW’s decided to stay in Canada and many others returning to visit later.

Neys to Marathon (25th July 2017)

The plan has gone out the window today, I slept appallingly I am physically tired, running out of road rations (I have no breakfast foods or snacks left and maybe one day of  lentals and such left, I need to get to a town. I am so tired. I had little motivation and a family of people started chatting to me at the camp ground entrance so I ended up chatting to them for quite a while which was nice.

The climb out of the camp ground was hard but within 10km I found a restaurant and ate. I felt a bit better afterwards but my legs just had nothing in them so headed into the next town, Marathon, and crashed out after just 33km. I needed a rest day, these hills were draining my legs.

Marathon (26th July 2017)

Shopping day, changed the bike chain (that’s number 3) and resting, nothing interesting to report except the town called Marathon doesn’t have a sports shop!

Marathon to White River (27th July 2017)

Not far out of town I bumped into a couple of lovely Canadians (Noah and Sasha) who were doing a supported crossing and spent most the day cycling with them feeling slightly guilty that I was slowing them down but they didn’t seem to worried, they actually took the lead so that I could slip in behind and benefit from the shelter that they provided.

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After a few hours of chatting and riding we stopped for a break and I left them to it knowing that they would catch me up in no time… about 20 mins later a cyclist (Paul Touzin) coming the other way crossed over and we ended chatting for quite a while, Noah and Sasha caught up and it was all very social on the side of the road which was really nice! Paul was in the process of riding every major road in Canada, now that’s an undertaking!

After a while we said our goodbyes to Paul and headed on, at this point it wasn’t far to my stopping point of White River (apparently the home of Winnie the Pooh… :s) The Canadians joined me for some food before heading on. I must admit this has been one of my best days riding since I left the Rockies, it was really nice to have company and I couldn’t have asked for a nicer couple to bump into, thanks guys!

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See I am still having fun even if I am slightly tired 🙂

 

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