First thing I thought - GET OUT! That is so cool! I've driven this road many a time and it is gorgeous in there. To be able to ride it would be a gift. So we did.
Here is the story of our day in pictures...
As mentioned above, we started out in Johnstone Canyon. Here is our driver Amanda. Hi Amanda! Thank you for driving our water and making sure we don't get eaten by bears (which Heather appears to attract I might add AND who I've seen along this route too...)
Of course the first thing we had to do was get all our fluids etc onto our bikes. Heather was testing out Hammer Perpetuem. Hmmm, do you think by the look on her face she likes the taste? Or perhaps it was the dry heaving she did after taking a few sips that made me think she didn't like it?? Pretty sure the last time I saw something that funny was when I saw the video of Jen's son Alex testing out gels.
So we headed out of the parking lot and went West on Hwy 1A till we got to Hwy 93, which we proceeded due south. The first bit of the ride is relaxing, then you get to a climb up to the Storm Mountain Lodge and beyond. It's not a bad little climb, not steep, just long. Here is a picture of Storm Mountain and it's brother across the valley, who's name I know not.
Once over it's a nice long ride down hill. Nothing wrong with that except that there were cracks in the road which someone decided they should fill in with sand, grit and pebbles. This would not have been an issue but they just left it in a mound from 1 to 2 inches high. The best part was that some were perpendicular to the way my tire was rolling, which gave me a wake up jolt every time I went over one. No, that's not a pylon in the middle of the road edge, it's the red arrow I drew in to try and show one of the bumps....
At one point I had some sweet speed coming down a hill, then come to a flatter portion where I went into aero. Then I hit one of those 'tire no roll' bumps and my neck snapped. It hurt. I kind of wondered how I'd feel today, but thankfully it's not too bad. I was having flashbacks to the time I had whiplash and it wasn't pretty!
For whatever reason I had to pee not less than a million times this ride. Last weekend in the race, nothing, this weekend, a million times. I kid you not. The good thing is I got to stop and see some pretty flowers...
Don't worry, I didn't pee on them. At the same spot I HAD to stop and get the following pictures. Any guess which province my heart belongs too?
At the same spot we had a rather unfortunate incident. Don't worry, it didn't involve pee. As I was taking photos of the wee flowers, Heather decided to adjust her bike seat as it was troubling her back. I was standing about four feet away and could hear the crack. The crack of a seat post pin shearing that is.
Picture if you can an electrician and a mechanical engineer pondering said snapped pin. The mechanical engineer immediately started to wonder why the pin sheared, how we could get it out of the clamp and where there would be a spare pin that we could take from the bike and still not mess with the integrity of any of the other components. The electrical engineer, well, she did what she knew best and grabbed some electrical tape.
I swear to you this world would fall apart if it weren't for electrical tape or duct tape!!! Heather's artwork and expertise is most apparant. Good thing it wasn't up to the mechanical engineer or we'd still be standing there pondering the next move!
I gotta say I was mighy impressed with Heather's attitude about it all. A lesser person would have thought, oh well, I guess I can't ride. Heather fixed it up, took it out for a test ride and rode the next 100 km like that. Several subsequent applications of tape had to be applied as it would squish down a bit, but still, very cool! High five for a brilliant attitude!!
There were many gorgeous sights as we made our way south. We were in a valley so had mountains on either side, wild flowers scattered about, rushing rivers and babbling brooks.
There was also the reminder of the fires from a few years back. I'm happy to report that there is alot of new growth amongst the burned trees. Hopefully the pine beetle won't get at it; however you can see the remains of it's wrath as well.
I'm sure you are wondering at this point if I was enjoying myself at all? Well if you could get a close up of this photo you'd see I have a grin from ear to ear...I was in my happy place!
I was having a pretty great ride too I should add! This despite killer headwinds that were there about 98% of the time. The winds have been from 40 - 60 kph in this neck of the woods, so I'll assume they were pretty good down there. Normally the signs hang straight down and in aligment with the post. Today however, there was a ever so slight angle visible indicate the strength of the winds...
As we neared Radium Hot Springs I had the pleasure of using an outhouse rather than nature's washroom. I must say, they have some very clean outhouses in BC!
The odd time the wind died down and I wondered if it would be ok to take a little dip in a lake somewhere....green means glacial water doesn't it?!