We had a real slow start to the day today, rolling out of our ditch and a few kilometers down the road to a nearby Subway for breakfast. A “short” day was in store for today, “only” 130km, though the wind wasn’t looking great so we were still expecting about 5 hours of riding time to get to Winnipeg.
Once we set off from Subway, the wind had turned to a slight headwind so we pushed pretty hard to haul ourselves to Portage La Prairie. The late start meant that it was already lunch time…a nice treat for only having ridden 60km.
Following a hearty lunch, we relished in our incredibly productive morning by hanging out and napping by Crescent Lake in Portage.
Finally though, it was time to get moving and get to Winnipeg. The heat had picked up by this point but the wind was changing directions, so at least we weren’t facing a direct headwind anymore. We made it about 40km out of Portage to a Tim’s where we called for a break from the heat. While cooling down in the Tim’s, we met a women who was in the midst of a walk from Calgary to Ottawa to deliver a (rather strongly worded) letter on climate change to the Prime Minister. Here was her set-up:
The scooter part looks helpful, but going looked to be slow when pushing that much weight. The trailer on the back is for her service dog and presumably whatever cargo she was carrying. Somehow she was still managing 30km per day.
We eventually made it to Winnipeg (precisely on time, actually) and were welcomed with open arms by some old friends. We’re going to hangout here for a couple of days to recover and catch up before we head to a cottage for another rest day then continue on with the US part of our journey.
Another block done! Halfway there, as the crow flies, but only about 40% by total distance. To date we’ve covered 2500km in 80 hours of riding time.
Days 19 & 20
Our two back to back rest days were passed with copious amounts of eating, relaxing, and some drinking. We visited MEC Winnipeg, the Forks, and a couple of local brew pubs. We also went to Activate, which is like a series of interactive active team challenges – something that isn’t actually particularly restful for rest days.
Much beer was drank, many laughs were had, the dogs were given many pets, and many rounds of N64 Super Smash were played but now it is time to hit the road again….for one day. Today we left for Winnipeg’s cottage country, the Whitesell Provincial Park to spend another rest day at a friend’s cottage. Today was also going to be an absolute scorcher, with clear blue skies and 31C+ the whole way.
After a relaxing morning of goodbyes and breakfast with some other old friends, we were on the road just before lunch time, stuffed with food from the past few days. Having had such a nice visit, I’m rather sad to be leaving Winnipeg. If time permitted I would’ve stayed a few more days, but unfortunately that wasn’t possible.
With more roads than just the Trans Canada to choose from now, we took the winding path through Assiniboine forest. Most car traffic was limited since it was a Sunday so we really had the street to ourselves and a few other cyclists. For once we made it through a big city with out getting lost! We hit the HWY 15 and headed dead straight for 80km. There was a stiff wind at our back that had us rolling at 35kph+. Glad we waited the couple days in Winnipeg for the bad wind to pass!
A lunch stop wasn’t necessary since we were so stuffed from the last couple days. We took a brief stop at a gas station 50km in for a refreshing pop then took a bit longer stop 100km in for another cold drink and popsicle. The one person working at the one store in town told us of a good swimming spot on a nearby river, so we made a quick detour there to cool off.
45km down the road, with the heat really getting to us by this point, we rolled up to my friend’s cottage to a warm welcome. My parents are out visiting friends in Winnipeg for the week, so they made the trek out to the cottage to see us too!
The rest of the evening was passed swimming, catching up, and eating even more food. With more than a full house, we decided to pitch our tents on the dock by the water; really living the cottage life. Tomorrow will be another relaxing rest day, this time the cottage version!
Cheers and Ride On!