Tuesday, July 30, 2013


It's so damn good. Will and I are hooked.
Plain, it's good. With meat sauce it's great. With assorted smoked meats... OH. MY. GAWD!!

Love it..!



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Monday, July 29, 2013

Kicking back in Canmore.

What a great few days!
We got to meet up with my lovely wonderful friends Katrina and Mike, and their cool little man, Zion, the best-behaved baby EVER!

ZION! (And 2nd cousin Sydney's hands..!)

Tom, Kat, Zion (hiding) and Will.

Me and my main man Mike.

Kat, Mike, Zion and their friend Tracey came out to the Icefields Parkway to meet us, and we camped out at Lake Louise, which is absolutely stunning. The next morning, Mike took us up to the lake, and the equally beautiful Lake Moraine to take some pix and enjoy it before riding back to Canmore with us.

Mike and Kat took turns to ride with us, whilst Tracey smashed out the whole 50 miles back to Canmore with us... The headwind was a real bitch though!

We got to see the amazing hotel Mike helps maintain, as well as have a soak in the thermal pools nearby. The views from their condo, as well as from all around town were amazing... The town is in a valley between 2 huge rugged mountain ranges... Stunning scenery wherever you look... We loved it!

What a view from the condo balcony..!

The thermal pools... Aaaaaaah!

Mountain tops peeking over the morning mist.

The huge rubble field left by the floods...

Mike & his hotel...

Inside the hotel.

Lord Tom, awaiting his minions...
(the cat ran away before I took the picture)... Hahaha.

The view from the 8th floor.

It was great to catch up with Kat & Mike, and to meet Zion for the first time, as well as meeting Tracey and Kat's cousins Jennifer and Sydney.

I look forward to the next adventure where we get to meet up again..! (Sydney may well be joining in on Riverwarriors 2: The Paddle North, beginning 2015..!)



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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Steep climbs, scary chasms & storms a-comin'...

Lungs burning, hearts pounding and thighs screaming for mercy... We granny-geared our way up a 12% grade for around 3 miles, as we made out way towards the amazing glaciers in the middle of the Icefield Parkway... The headwind had already been kicking our asses, but the climb pretty much finished us off..! The views were spectacular though.

The water flowing down and disappearing from view into a chasm was impressive and terrifying at the same time... Not something you'd want to slip into, as that'd be likely the last thing you ever did.

YouTube Video

After being both impressed and scared by the raging water, the storm that had been sat behind the mountain jumped over and started to bear down on us, so we made a run for it, barely getting into the shelter of a rest area toilet in time before the rain, hail, thunder and lightening came crashing down around us.

Being cold and a bit wet, sheltering in a smelly pit toilet wasn't the most fun we'd ever had..! But it was better than being hailed upon...

Fortunately, by the afternoon, the weather had improved tremendously, and we were treated to stunning views of turquoise mountain lakes and also got to complete the last and highest climb of the trip, Bow Summit.

Now we just have to find my friends Katrina and Mike, who are going to ride and camp with us for a day or two before we stay with them to rest up and hang out for a few more days...

Can't wait!



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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Making our way into the mountains.

Up... More up... And yet more up again..!

Luckily, the road is pretty well graded and there are only a few really steep lung-burning, thigh busting sections.
But the scenery is well worth plenty of photo breaks and general standing-there-and-enjoying-it moments...

Onwards we climb... Jasper, in the province of Alberta... Here we come!

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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Prince George.

Our rest break in PG was a good one... Soaking in the spa, shopping, eating, and even a trip to the cinema...
Will and I also got our bikes tuned up at the local bike shop, so the gears and brakes are performing much better now...

Blockbuster Video is now a liquor store..!

Jelly beans galore..!

Downtown PG sunset.

The soaking session..!

Now we face the steep climb back out of town as we head towards the mountain and Jasper...
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Friday, July 19, 2013

Steep slogs and stunning sunsets.

The day started out with an (unfortunately) appropriately named hill... Six Mile Hill. It wasn't quite that long, but close enough.
That's the elevation spike you can see to the left in my watch:

We'd kinda planned for it though, as we stopped for the night previously at the tiny town of Topley, where we refreshed ourselves with Gatorade at the wonderful Grizzly Jim's General Store, and then with a great proper hot meal (on a plate!) at the café next door.

The night was spent at Mark Zagwyz's place, a local photographer, who has a camping area for travelers. I spent a good hour talking about photography and gear with Mark, and it was great to see some if his stunning wildlife images.

Knowing the hill was around 3 miles away, meant we could warm up a bit before hitting it, and it was just as well we did, as it was a thigh-busting, lung-burning steep 7 to 9% grade.

It was currently being re-paved too, so whilst we were battling up it, we were also quite pleased with how gloriously SMOOOOOTH the surface was... And as always, the effort was rewarded with some KILLER-SWEET-SWEET-SMOOOOOOOOOTH DOWNHILL..! Yes, we flew down the other side alright!

We ended the day, after around 75 miles, at the slightly larger town of Fraser Lake.
One big fat Subway Sammie later, we rolled down to the lakeside for some free city-rec-park camping. Complete with running water & flushing toilet bathrooms. Fraser Lake certainly made the grade in our book.

The sunset was late (after 10pm) but wonderful, with most of the camp-folk and RV-ers out a taking pix. Tom and I both shot a bunch with our Nikon DSLRs, but I also put the excellent Hitech Filters Camera app on my iPhone to good use, using a digital graduated ND filter setting to help the colours show better...

As always, I'm a sucker for a sunset...

More soon.



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Thursday, July 18, 2013

The tale of Hungry Hill.

Damn. We have to ride up that..!

When we rounded the bend and saw this hill, we thought it might have been the worryingly named Six Mile Hill... But that was still a joy for another day.

No, this monster was named Hungry Hill. The locals we've met say it's named because the pioneers often had to feed their horses half-way up as it was so long and steep, a straight-shot to the top wasn't possible. When we reached the much needed rest area at the top, there was a sign that had another story from more recent times, and one that possibly was an even more apt reason for the name...


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Wednesday, July 17, 2013


We have made it to the Trans-Canada Highway, also known as Route 16.
We left the Cassiar Highway this morning and have begun to head in a more east-south-easterly direction.
The Cassiar was beautiful (once we could see it after the clouds and the rain) but quite a tough ride, with the last section having little in the way of services and plenty in the way of mozzies, gnats and flies.
We are all pretty well bitten up... But that's part of the deal when bush camping.
The lump on my neck really itches though!

Route 16 has been very well paved, with a mostly large shoulder to ride along, and also pretty well graded, with only a few short steep climbs that have called for a lot of gear down-shifting.
We've also been treated to a few gas station breaks, enjoying a cold soda and a large selection of snacks too... So we have to be careful to not pile back on the pounds we've lost!

Tonight we have stopped about 6 miles from the town of Smithers at the Glacier View RV park,

where we have thoroughly enjoyed the lovely view of the glacier... And the use of the free wifi, hot showers, flushing toilets, and by far the best part, the fact that the whole park appears to be bug-free..! We assume they must fog regularly, but whatever the reason, the place is fantastic. There's a lovely evening breeze too, so if it keeps up, we should enjoy a dew-free pack up in the morning too.

Tomorrow, we push onwards to Smithers where we will grab some brekky at Maccas, plus possibly some small items of needed or replacement gear at the outfitters in town, before riding on SE towards Prince George... We should get to PG in 3 days or so, where a much needed zero will be taken to give our sore aching asses a much needed break from the bike saddle...

More soon.



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Location:Nouch Frontage Rd,,Canada

Monday, July 15, 2013

Stuff from the past few days...

Rain, rain and more rain was what we had been suffering, soaked and chilled to the bone, for the previous few days.

Fortunately, at last, yesterday and today, the golden healing rays of the sun have been beaming down on us from clear blue skies and although there have been still some headwinds in our faces and thigh-busting grades to pedal up, it's been SIGNIFICANTLY much more fun for being able to see the scenery (as opposed to head down, staring at the road 3 feet in front of our wheels, braced against the deluge and the frigid air).

The snow-capped mountains that surround us as we pedal between 2 ranges are stunning...

At the end of Saturday, our last miserable cold wet day, we stopped at the amazing lodge at Tatogga Lake, where for $20 for the 3 of us, we got a great campsite, flushing toilets, unlimited hot shower use, and the enjoyment of the heated lodge, where I had a huge slice of hot homemade apple pie & ice-cream. Plus I got to see some of the local (now deceased!) wildlife up-close, to get an appreciation of just how big things can get... Especially the bull moose and the timber wolves.

We are all doing much better for the sunny dry weather, although Will has suffered problems with his rear tyre a few more times than I think he'd like...

Hopefully, with a new tube AND a new tyre fitted, he'll stop having a soft slowly deflating rear wheel...

Now, we are at Meziadin Lake Park, where we have some pretty decent wifi (for a nominal fee of $5) and a nice flat area to pitch the tents.

We just dined like kings on some freeze-dried meals, and once I'm done typing this, it's time to hit the sack...

We had a couple of double big muther-humper hills to get over before we finally got here, almost 90 miles from our roadside campsite this morning... So we're pretty pooped...

So for now...



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Paved road vs chip seal...

The difference is obvious..!

We enjoyed the sweet smooth rolling of a paved Tarmac shoulder, which was considerably smoother than the more basic chip-sealed highway we've had to rumble along for too many miles...
As we get further south into BC, the roads have improved tremendously, especially when compared to the rutted, pot-holed and very course slow-rolling roads of Yukon...

Rolling, rolling, rolling...



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Sunday, July 14, 2013

Dinner with a view...

Sat by the side of the road, camping at a little rest area next to the Bob Quinn ( basic dirt-strip) Airport... We got the breeze, the views, and even some planes and choppers coming & going...

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Saturday, July 13, 2013


Looks like the first 14 miles are gonna be thigh-busters too...

This is the less-fun side of bicycle touring... Especially when it's raining and 8 degrees C.

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Location:Boulder St,,Canada

More riding in the rain...

The weather sucks at the moment...

Riding wet and cold really isn't the way it's meant to be...

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Location:Boulder St,,Canada

Friday, July 12, 2013

Beating a path through BC.

We have made it into British Columbia. Then out again, back into Yukon Territory... And then back into BC.
The Alaskan Highway through Yukon dipped into BC for a half-a-days ride or so, before we spent the rest of the afternoon and the next morning clipping along east towards the junction with the Cassiar Highway.

Our ride was made much more pleasant for the tailwind we were finally receiving, and although we seemed to be trying to outrun a weather front that had sprinkled on us periodically throughout the day, the impending storm that made us set up our bush camp in a hurry, passed us by farther west, leaving us with some glorious sunshine and a crystal clear cold creek to sit by and have dinner.

Later the next day, having turned south on route 37, known as the Cassiar Highway, we entered BC properly.

The weather started to become more and more overcast and windy until we ended up riding in cold driving rain, thoroughly soaking and chilling us, making things much less pleasant than they should have been, as well as robbing us of the scenic views the highway is known for.
When the rain cleared and the sun poked back out, we seized the opportunity to dry out wet tents and air damp sleeping bags.

The mozzies were thick and biting something fierce at the past few campgrounds, and we have all received way too many bites on our legs, heads, necks and in some unspeakable places too... The morning bush-bathroom-break has been a rushed, painful experience!
Laying in your tent looking at a few hundred of the little bastards just gagging to get in at you isn't a whole load of fun!

The rain came back with a vengeance, and the air temperature dropped to single digits (Celsius) so again, enjoying downhills wasn't easy, as fingers, noses, toes and ears were numb and sore with the chill.
Waking to a steady drumbeat of rain on the tent fly foretold a grim days ride...

We did enjoy the company of the local resident of one small village we passed through, Good Hope Lake.
As we entered the town, there was a large neon-orange hand-painted sign that read 'Watch 4 Horse'.
Horse. Singular. That seemed a little strange. But it soon became obvious as whilst trying to shelter from the rain and wind and eat a few snacks, Zephyr, the village horse came to visit.

Pushing on, the rain having finally let up a bit, we made it to Simmonds Lake, where free camping next to the lake, a distinct lack of mozzies, and an excellent hearty fire made by Will made for a great spot to set up tents and eat our rehydrated dinners, all visibly steaming in the cooling evening air.

After getting away dry but chilly, the rain caught up with us again, and after 65 miles, 40 of them cold and soggy, we have made it here to the tiny town of Dease Lake, where a much needed warm, dry motel was obtained!
Tomorrow, we hope the forecasted improvement in the weather happens, as another wet cold day isn't very desirable.
We have fed up well at the local diner, stocked up on a few more snacks at the well-appointed grocery store over the road, and are now grazing on sugary snacks and watching the Discovery Channel. Oh yeah!
Cheers y'all.
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Location:Boulder St,,Canada