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Published: August 3rd 2015
Stage 17 MUNCHO LAKE to TOAD RIVER. (2nd SECTION) Distance Kms 60.80 kms Total Dist to Date 1889 kms Road
Condition: Average 10kms under repair. Weather: Cool. Sunny spells. Some Head Wind Time in Saddle: 2.40 hrsSpeed: av 22.8 kph. Max speed 59.2 kph Av Cadence 64 rpm Elevation: 450 m up; Total up to Date 15,450 m; 600 m down; Total down to date 14,995 m .
Today was a short day. The weather was good, partial blue sky, moderate headwind and beautiful scenery. The road passed between two mountain ranges. The fast flowing Toad R ran adjacent to the road much of the way. The early 9 kms were along the banks of Muncho lake.
The camping Ground is on a lake on which beavers have built a dam. Hopefully they will present themselves later. Moose supposedly are prevalent in this area. Also saw a sizable deer before it was scared off by a large truck blaring its horn.
The ever present Roadwork marked 10 kms of the journey. The Campsite is managed or owned by Phillipinoes. An odd place to be especially when the woman told me its winter, 8 months of the year, and
the snow is at least waist deep that entire time! They do grow some amazing vegetables though in the summer months- huge cauliflower, cabbages, tomatoes, pumpkins, eggplant and cucumbers.
The beavers revealed themselves after dinner as they went foraging for timber for their dam wall and nest. The dam is constructed to provide security for the nest which is constructed in side the dam depths. The beavers create a path underwater into the nest, but live above the waterline in the nest. Beavers are herbivores with large front teeth to naw through tree trunks to create timber for dams and nests. The beavers were and are hunted for their skins which are used to make felt for hats and furs.
Stage 18 TOAD RIVER to TETSA R. (2nd SECTION) Distance Kms 75.96 kms Total Dist to Date 1965 kms Road
Condition: Average Weather: Cool. Sunny spells. Time in Saddle: 3.24 hrsSpeed: av 22.3 kph. Max speed 64.6kph Av Cadence 65 rpm Elevation: 1000 m up; Total up to Date 16,450 m; 850 m down; Total down to date 15,845 m .
Today was enjoyable. A morning of climbing to lunch at 9.45am. Great scenery, barren
mountains which must be thick with snow in season, fast narrow rivers, scoured hillsides from snow melts ( fans??), large conifers.
Just prior to lunch came upon a herd of Stone Mountain goats or sheep. The bucks had impressive horns. The animals weren't timid of cyclists but ran from noisy cars. They are large beasts and must stand 5 feet at the shoulders and 4.5 feet at the rump.
The lunch spot was cold with a strong tail wind which was enjoyed on a 25km downhill to camp. That made my daily average speed look respectable. Top downhill speed ever at 64.6kph!! Someone else topped 75kph.
The camp ground is treed and grassed and looks appealing. There are a few bugs though, but don't seem to bite! The camp is privately run and in the shop are sold delicious and huge cinnabuns ( 5 inch sq buns made with a cinnamon sauce coating),Not delicate, but energising after the ride.
Stage 19 TETSA R. to FORT NELSON (2nd SECTION) Distance Kms 106.09 kms Total Dist to Date 2071 kms Road
Condition: Road construction 30%!b(MISSING)alance ok Weather: Cold 4c at start warming to 30c Sunny
spells. Time in Saddle: 4.32 hrsSpeed: av 23.4 kph Max speed 53.9 kph Av Cadence 68 rpm Elevation: 650 m up; Total up to Date 17,100m; 850 m down; Total down to date 16,695m .
Today was another day on the road. Road conditions difficult for about 30kms due to road construction, stop and go road control and bumpy road surface. However i clocked over 2000 kms today in 17 riding days. Legs not feeling to bad since readjusting the seat.
No animals, lots of trees and mountains. Some distant scenes were very attractive.
There was a murder in this camp town last night. Someone went 'loco' killed one of the women road construction crew, then ran off naked into the forest before suiciding. A sad event, but apparently not unusual up here. The road crew we spoke with at the stop and go areas didn't seem unduly upset!! No other news.
Stage 20 FORT NELSON to PROPHET R. (2nd SECTION) Distance Kms 107.60 kms Total Dist to Date 2178 kms Road
Condition: Road construction periodically, otherwise ok Weather: Cool at start warming to 25+C Sunny spells. Time in Saddle: 4.45 hrsSpeed: av 22.6
kph Max speed 50.9 kph Av Cadence 72 rpm Elevation: 885 m up; Total up to Date 17,995 m, 675 m down; Total down to date 17,370 m
Today was good weather, ok road, but the scenery was a little ho hum. No majestic views. Just the road boarded by tall spruce.
Many quarry trucks carting stone passed us all quite closely. Otherwise non eventful. Saw evidence of the recent fires that have raged through BC.
CAMPSITE is a bush site with no amenity. Arriving at 12.45 makes for a long day! The constant 100km+ days, putting up and pulling down wet tents, either from rain or very heavy dew is becoming quite tiring. Don't know how others on the tour, some 16 yrs older than me are fairing. I have noticed that many seem to have an afternoon sleep, evidenced by the snoring!!
Stage 21 PROPHET R. To Pink Mountain ( Sasquatch Crossing) (2nd SECTION) Distance Kms 117.80 kms Total Dist to Date 2295 kms Road
Condition: Road construction periodically, otherwise ok Weather: Cool at start warming to 25+C Sunny spells.rain Showers. Time in Saddle: 5.42 hrsSpeed: av 20.4 kph Max speed 65.1
kph Av Cadence 69 percent rpm Elevation: 1300 m up; Total up to Date 19,295 m, 650 m down; Total down to date 18,020 m
Today much like yesterday just longer and higher. Had a 5km climb at 9%!g(MISSING)radient. Tough!! Later a shorter climb at 11%! (MISSING)Cant recall any steeper gradients!! Camp last night not too bad. Rain during night, so tent a little wet. No animals.
It rained on route, hailed on others. Luckily not to bad. Hot at times. Very sparse population here, seems to largely be road workers and oil/ energy workers. Quite a few Phillipinoes in the over night stops, likely brides I'd say. Very cheerful and chatty, a big difference to the local locals!!
This camp is a construction camp, 5 working toilets and 5 working showers. Hallelujah.
Stage 22. Pink Mountain ( Sasquatch Crossing) to Fort St John ( END 2nd SECTION) Distance Kms 161.08 kms Total Dist to Date 2456 kms Road
Condition: Road shoulder all day, rugged. Weather: Cold 3c at start warming to 25+C Sunny spells.rain Showers/Hail. Time in Saddle: 7.05 hrsSpeed: av 22.7 kph Max speed 73 kph Av Cadence 74 rpm Elevation:
1525 m up; Total up to Date 20,820 m, 450 m down; Total down to date 18,470 m
Today was a rugged, tough day. Rained and stormed half the night and tent gear all soaked. A good start!
We had expectations of 650m up, but info was woefully wrong as it was 1525m. Not that it makes a difference, but you do psyche yourself up and as it was a long day, 160 km, the extra hill climbing was hard. Otherwise scenery was boring.
A lot of oil and gas fracking happening in this area and the roads are clogged with massive heavy transport, most trucks pulling two trailers, and with the road being single lane each direction we were pushed to the road edge, where all the road dietrus was blown, making for a very stony ride. Additionally the edge also has deep and bumpy sound hole markings ( audio noise for tired drivers)( rumble strips).When you occasionally stray onto these, you are shaken dramatically.
At the 70 km mark before lunch, my front derailleur jammed and refused to shift the chain from the large ring to the smaller ring making hill climbing, of which
there was still much, very tough. At lunch 15 km later i managed to shift the chain to the smaller front ring. This made cycling easier, but for the next 75 km, I often spun out on descents and my legs rotated much faster than i prefer. At least it saved my knees.
Fort St John is a hub for the oil/gas industry in this region. It seems to be a boom town. Big personal trucks, high % of males, trailer parks, motels, fast food outlets. The town is spread out and we are staying at an extremity which makes getting around impossible by foot. The TDA organisation seems to select cheap hotels, which are old and on the extremes. Makes finding food difficult.
Last night had an open burger, two small beers for $30-
Will need to work on bike, washing, and drying tent tomorrow. Not that there is much to sight see!! 3 riders leave the tour today at the end of the second section, and a new rider, the husband of a german rider joins for two sections. This section was full of climbing approx 11,200 metres up.
Tot: 0.226s; Tpl: 0.053s; cc: 11; qc: 23; dbt: 0.0158s; 1; m:saturn w:www (22.214.171.124); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.2mb