I started the day with tired legs and a general lethargy – not a good start. I was eating well – I felt full after after the meal at Teslin (day before yesterday), and the ham&cheese omelette with toast and potatoes the next morning set me up for yesterday’s ride. But I didn’t have much in the way of lunch, and the instant macaroni cheese for two maybe wasn’t that big. I’d had a good nights sleep (best part of 11 hours), the weather was good (cool, cloudy, not much wind) but was struggling to hold a straight line while crawling up a not particularly steep well surfaced hill in second bottom gear. Today was going to be tough.
A couple of guys drove past and pulled in at rest area just up ahead. They got out and very enthusiastically asked me where I was form, where I was going, and was there anything I needed. The first two questions were easy – the last question, well, I didn’t know where to start! Can they take my panniers? New pair of legs? Give me a lift? The list was endless! I was not quite with it, but the just of it was that they were cyclists, and were providing support to some friends cycling from Montana to Anchorage (or maybe the other way around?). I declined all offers of help – other than a can of coke. As they drove off I realised that their enthusiasm was just what I needed, and I’d received enough to get me going to the Continental Divide just along the road. If you are reading this – thanks guys!
At the Continental Divide cafe I had a bacon (crisp!) and cheese omelette with toast, and rhubarb pie & ice cream. After chatting with Adam (cyclist from Seoul I met in Teslin), updating this blog, and waiting for a rainstorm to finish, it was 5pm by the time I left. With such a late start, I was not hopeful of even making 80km. But the omelette & pie were like rocket fuel – 3.5 hours later I’d covered a further 80km!!! There was a few comments on Facebook about my calorie intake – well from the last couple of days a big cheese & ham/bacon omelette (with toast) and a piece of pie (with ice cream) is enough for 50 miles!
As for the countryside, another day is bringing another change. Up until now, all the rivers I’ve passed have drained into the Pacific (or Arctic). After the Continental Divide, all rivers will drain to the Atlantic. Because of all the stealth climbing (down hills just shorter than the previous up hill) the direction I was travelling in, the divide was not as dramatic as it sounds. But looking back after about 200m of descending, it looked more dramatic!
Now there were no more surrounding hills, with the road gently dipping every time it crosses a river – down and up the other side:
And down and up the other side – you get the idea!
June 14th – 95 km to the campsite at km marker 1042. As described above, left at 11 for a slow 15km, then a 4 hour break, then a solid 80km. This all adds up to 200km over two days – ie keeping the pace up, but without building in any reserve.