We planned an early day, yet again and it was 5C when we were up. I couldn’t muster getting up too early and lazed around for a while. As it happened, I was the last to set the bike up to leave (not often does that happen). The squirrels around here were pretty bold and they had been rummaging around my tent all evening and I had to check again if they had done any damage thro the night. Luckily they had left it alone and I just had a reasonably wet tent to pack up.

To save time and finish my supplies, I decided to make coffee and eat bread as b’fast. Not a bad idea really, not as filling as oatmeal, but definitely faster and less messy. Something to think about I reckon.

We left in the chill and the first part was a gentle descent which was pretty cold with the bikes gaining speed and the winds blowing strong. My fingers got really numb by the time I had done the first 10 km. We stopped at a viewpoint to check out some waterfall and with the sun not showing up yet, we had to return to the freezing ride again. Once the sun came up, I had to strip off my waterproofs and enjoyed the cool air. I just had to keep working the legs to keep the body warm though.

We had a smallish hill after which we stopped for a short break. What followed was long gentle descent, almost flat road, but with a strong headwind. I tried to keep the momentum and rode hard thro the day. At some point, Krijn took the lead and set a blistering pace that after 30 minutes, I couldn’t keep up anymore.

I was aware of a second hill in our route and had to conserve some energy for that. We met a dutch couple on tandem who mentioned that the Warmshower’s hosts were expecting us! that was cool.

The second hill was longer and steeper than the first and it was hard hard work getting up over it. I stopped at a viewpoint and my crew also stopped and decided to make a lunch break there. One of the car drivers told us that this was the highpoint and it was downhill from there on (never trust car drivers, is a lesson to be learnt). As it turned out, it was another 2 km of climbing which took nearly 20 minutes to make. Ouch.

Luckily after that bit, it was really a downhill. I didn’t enjoy it much as there was no shoulder and the cars and trucks rode like idiots. It was hard to keep the bike on a single track and avoid collisions. The entrance to Radium Hot Springs was pretty, but after a hot day of riding, we weren’t bothered to go to the super touristy springs. Instead we went up to the visitor centre to mooch on internet and make a call to our host.

David and Mragaret were really nice and asked us to come by anytime. We showed up and they let us settle down in their loft and spare rooms. Krissi asked if she could cook dinner for them and they let us have the kitchen. A couple of other cyclists were expected to show up too and we headed to the grocery store to buy some supplies for dinner. I also had to stock up a bit for tomorrow.

We headed home, took rest, and helped Krissi do her cooking. She made a nice curry with vegetables and the two american girls showed up in a while. They were doing big distances and had strong cycling legs. We discussed a variety of topics (mainly travels and cycling) over dinner. David had some encyclopaedic knowledge of roads in BC and offered specific advice for all of us, though we were doing different routes in the days ahead.

Margaret had made some brownies for dessert (Awesome) and we ate them while talking more of this and that. It was nice to meet out hosts. They are fantastic people with serious appreciation for wilderness and travel and it’s been great sharing ideas with them.

Route: Marble Canyon Campground to Radium Hot springs
Distance: 92 Km
Ascent:
Descent:
Time in saddle: 5:00 hrs
Expenses: Sg$ 31.59
Comments: Climbing after being told it’s downhill is not funny at all.

Track Notes