August 7, 2022 on

Month: July 2023 (Page 1 of 3)

GP Day 26

Short note today and no pics since I can’t get to WiFi on my phone. Will update tomorrow.

Albanel to Parc National de Pointe Taillon

48 miles, 558 ft of climbing. Started off with a clear sky and sun, but chilly at 51 degrees. Easy ride today included a short, pontoon boat ferry ride to the national park. We’re camping tonight and it promises to be a chilly one.

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GP Day 25 — Sunshine & Bleuets

Métabetchouan–Albanel, 60.6 miles, 1723 ft of climbing.

Early morning again trying to beat rain. (Foreshadowing: It didn’t work! Oh, I guess foreshadowing is supposed to be more subtle than that.) Up at 5:30, snoozed once but the crows wouldn’t have it, so I started breaking camp and then went in to use the bathroom. Patrick made coffee for us and we made some toast from his homemade bread, finished packing and hit the road about 6:45.

The only way to describe it was that it was a beautiful morning. A bit on the cool side so we both had on jackets, and I even used my fancy-dancy gloves (see pics). That lasted for 45 or so miles, as did the nice, mostly flat Veloroute des Bleuets (Blueberry Bicycle Route). We did hit 3 patches of rain where we scrambled to put our phones away and don our rain jackets, but all-in-all, it wasn’t that bad. We stopped at our favorite food source, an IGA, had lunch and stocked up for dinner and breakfast, and waited for the next break in the weather. The last five miles to our next warm showers host, Stephanie, was all sunny again.

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GP Day 24 — Métabetchouan & Piekuakamu

Saguenay to Métabetchouan, 52.2 miles, 2265 ft. of climbing.

We slept in today. It was glorious. Well rested and ready to go at 9 am. We rode out of Saquenay on a bike path that provided a wonderful look back at the city and the river. We are on La Route Verte 8 now and have been since Wednesday.

It was a dry but gray day, much cooler than the past three weeks. The wind is coming out of the northwest now and it brought along the drop in temps. Unrelated to the temps, my thighs were telling me in no uncertain terms that they were tired from yesterday, and every time we stopped and started up again they screamed at me. I shut my ears and carried on!

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GP Day 23 — Saguenay

The camp site was beautiful. The bugs were not. Black flies that landed and bit causing very visible (and itchy) red marks in seconds. Small, but nasty. We missed the mosquitoes at night because we were in our tents by dusk. That wasn’t the case at 4:30 this morning when we got up. I ate in the tent again, and resisted opening the “hatch” because of those darn flies. But this morning it was the ‘skeeters. I went out with my first round of packed stuff and by the time I got back to the tent, there were at least six flying around. I have magic potion stickers that Sally S. gave to us last year, but they were packed away on the bike and by the time I found them, I would’ve had twenty more bites. Best defense is to get on the bike and hightail it faster than a mosquito can fly (about 1-1.5 mph. That doesn’t work for the ones you run into!)

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GP Day 22 — Fjord

8:50 pm. Just some pics for the moment. Wifi connection not very good. On our campground on the Saguenay fjord is beautiful. Heading for the town of Saguenay tomorrow. More when we get there Friday afternoon.

Update July 28, 1:05 pm: We slept in until 7 today since we didn’t have to leave for the ferry until 9. We had ridden to the ferry office yesterday afternoon to make reservations, so we just had to show up. It rained overnight — the best rain to have, and was still cloudy and a passing shower at 7:15 made sure everything the wind had dried was damp again for packing.

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GP Day 21 — Gaspé Mountain (well, hill) high

Another good day. 47.8 mi, 2688 ft of climbing from Rimouski to Trois Pistoles.

beautiful day, didn’t have to do an early start, nice weather, moderate headwinds (at least until the afternoon) but also I’ve been a bit of going up. I didn’t say climbing because at one point John asked if we were actually going up, and I replied yes for another mile and a half at 1% grade. There were some harder sections including one about 7% right out of the gate from Rimouski, but nothing that challenging.

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GP Day 20 — “and the weatherman lied”

In a good way for us. Well, lying is a stretch, but I’d like to see a cone of predictability for rainstorms kind of like a hurricane track prediction. What’s the real probability? Turns out it’s pretty low. The hills and rivers here seem to make predicting storm paths as hard as it is in Central PA.

We woke up at 4:45 today prepared to break camp and hit the road to beat the rain projected for 9:00 a.m. in Rimouski. After both our alarms went off, John called over from his tent, “The weather’s looking better.” “So, you want to sleep in a little longer?” “Yeah!”

We didn’t need to set a snooze alarm cuz less than 5 minutes later, The via Canada train came through blasting its horn. I stuck around in the tent until 5:30, but it was really a useless cause trying to get back to sleep as the campers next to us were packing up and every time we moved in the tent their dog started barking, followed by their exhortations to it to not do that. We ate and got packed up and hit the road by 6:50.

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GP Day 19 — Ahhhh!

75 miles, 2561 ft of climbing from Campbellton New Brunswick to Val Brilliant.

Beautiful day, nice and warm but not too hot, and all the climbing was that about 1%. I followed the Matapédia River for almost 60 miles. It was like riding a rail trail it was so gradually up. Early morning traffic was light, but if I’m much busier today we’re on with lots of trucks and campers heading in both directions. Later in the afternoon we got off of the main road 132 and we’re on some lovely back roads. Hard to tell the terrain from Pennsylvania except that the majority of the trees here are pine.

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GP Day 18 — Enough resting…

Maria, QC to Campbellton, New Brunswick, 53 miles, 2,176 ft of climbing. 7 miles shy of 1,000 for me on this trip. John probably has 3,500 since starting in April.

After some whopper lightning storms last night, the skies cleared this morning and it was another great riding day; but not a lot of pics. Sort of like the Oregon coastline overload I went through last year. Lots of little coves with picturesque little towns are 5 miles apart and if you want some examples, look back in the blog. There will likely be more when we cross the St. Lawrence on Wednesday.

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GP Day 17 — Rest Day

We took the day off today. There were thunderstorms all along our route today and some pretty impressive lighting displays along the bay in front of us. Charles was kind enough to let us invade his space for two days and even lent us his car to go to dinner (fresh and locally sourced salmon linguine for me and cod for John). Good day to chill out and Sunday looks dry for the most part with just a chance of light rain. I did get a whole two miles in riding for coffee this morning, and spent some time lubing and adjusting brakes on P. H.

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