July 14

July 14th, 2007

My stride wasn’t feeling like it should this morning. The road was unusually slippery. Oh sure, it was pouring rain, but there’s been enough rain lately to wash the oil off the surface. So the pavement shouldn’t be this slick. The slipperiness wasn’t consistent either. It seemed to be very random. And then I figured it out. I looked down towards my feet just in time to see my wheels slice across a big fat dew worm. Slip. The rain had brought the worms out to the road and my wheels were sliding all over the place as I skate through them. After an entire morning of torrential raining, the drops began dissipating and simply became a mist. And the worms retreated back underground. I was back in form.

 

I took a nice long break in White River to give myself and my clothes a chance to dry off a bit. White River is the birth place of Winnie the Pooh. I couldn’t pass through and not get a picture with the silly little bear.

 

The roads were still wet, but the rain had pretty much let up. I still had my noisy rain skates on when I came across another wild animal. Grazing along the side of the highway was an enormous black bear! He must have heard me coming and began casually strolling in my direction. 15 feet away. 10 feet. 5 feet. I wanted a nice picture, but this was getting a bit too close. My mom was in a panic in the front seat of the RV. There was terror in her eyes as she frantically dug through the glove box for the Bear Spray. I was a bit uncomfortable with the bear approaching directly towards me, but I wasn’t worried. I knew I could quickly jump in the vehicle if need be. Sensing that he would be no match for my awesome power, the bear turned towards the back of the van and walked across the road where some foolish foreign tourists thought it would be fun to throw bread and apples toward the animal. I was able to snap a few great shots, but shook my head in disbelief as these people continued to lure the bear towards them. That was my queue to leave. It was bad enough seeing worm guts all morning, I wasn’t in the mood to see someone being mauled by a bear.

 

The Northerly cross wind helped me reach nearly 110 km on the day. But the last 800 meters will go down as one of my toughest finishes so far. I was already tired from completing over 100 km today, and then I had to finish with a long, steep climb up a very rough hill. To add insult to injury, a single dark cloud formed over my head and began dropping water on me the entire way up to the summit. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, the cross wind that had been helping me all day suddenly shifted directly into my face. Uphill, into the wind, in the rain, on wet, rough pavement. Ugghhh. I knew it was a long climb because when I finally reached the top, there was a ski lift. But it wasn’t a ski lift to take you up. I was at the top of the ski lift!

 

So I made it Marathon, Ontario where we drove into the downtown area and found a campground. What we didn’t realize is that today is Marathon’s 2nd annual triathlon. And the transition station is in the middle of the campground we’re staying in. So we were treated to front row seats to the show. The announcer even talked to me over the loud speaker which helped lead to a few late day donations. Some of the locals have warned me that from here to Thunder Bay will be hilly. But I think I’m ready. I will not be beaten by Northern Ontario.

 

NEW PHOTOS ARE UP!

Posted in Daily Journal | 2 Comments »

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2 Responses to “July 14”

  1. Jewels Says:

    Okay…Irony in its purist form.

    I am in the middle of nowhere Yukon where we have shotguns in camp if a bear were to stroll our way. However, due to my current location and proximity to wildlife, you would think I would have seen a bear by now…wouldn’t you? I haven’t seen anything but a squirrel! Glad the stupid tourists like to pet bears and lured it away from your direction!!!!!

    Stay Safe!

  2. Alex Says:

    Hey worm slayer! Sounds like you’re continuing to make good progress. Nice bear pics. They caused me to have a flash back to our own bear run in. I’m enjoying playing along at home via your funny journal entries.

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