Stage 46 – Tobermory to Owen Sound. By the time I leave Toronto (where I’m taking a week off with Susie and her family) next week the Tour de France will be over, so I’m retitling each etape in my blog for three days. Although I have way more stages than they do, we have so much else in common. Similar daily distances (sometimes – not so much today), eating on the go, getting very very wet occasionally, being on a bicycle (that’s enough. Ed) It rained so consistently today that it was only listening to the TdF podcast that got me through.
- Today’s Distance (miles/km): 61/98
- Time in saddle: 7h 34
- Max/min temp (°c): 22°/13°
- Climb/descend (feet) : 798 / 1331
- Calories used: 2632
- Cafe time: 1h 11
For the first time in ages I travelled all day without seeing the water once. Lake Huron on my right, Georgian Bay on my left, but never a glimmer of view. It was just a tunnel of road through trees, with the dreaded headwind combined with torrential rain wearing me down. There’s a Dickens line somewhere, a character who welcomes hardships as a test, because, he says, where would the credit be in being cheerful if life were easy? Can anyone fill in the huge gaps in my idle reference? I used to know these things…
So it’s very much a photo-lite day here on the blog dear readers. I started early from Tobermory planning to get as much in as possible before the predicted storm arrived:
Last night I walked into town to visit the well-known Tobermory Brewing Co & Grill, and had a pint of some great pale ale with a lamb burger. It’s a very impressive joint but the place was heaving and I was ready for some peace and quiet so turned down the repeated offers of another pint and had a very early night after strolling around the harbour:
Everyone I spoke to was talking about the severe weather warnings in place for a storm system that’s been heading our way. NOT what a cyclist wants to hear before going to bed, but forewarned is forecheesedoff.
The rain held off long enough after leaving for me to stop and take this, for Susie really, who loves sweetpeas:
After that my appreciation of roadside treasures went downhill fast. Second breakfast was taken bang on 50km, as I arrived in a town with construction going on. I had the place to myself and sat feeling slightly stunned, eating and drinking. The rain was in a brief lull, but the moment I got back on the bike….you know what I’m going to say.
I ducked under an awning 30 windswept kilometres later in Wilarton when there was of those comedy deluge moments when everyone runs for cover fast. Luckily the awning sold pulled pork buns and root beer, and was the home of the world’s smallest Adirondack chair:
At least the distance here wasn’t too bad, and the rain stopped with 10km to go. Owen Sound is a nice-looking town with plenty of Victorian buildings still in use and lots of independent shops. I thought I’d head back in from my motel until I saw the monster hill I had to climb to get here. A local lady saw me crest the top, and stopped with her shopping to offer some very friendly encouragement, gym attendant-style. “Way to go – nice job. Keep it up!” So, trip into town cancelled, big Chinese restaurant opposite highly preferred.
Forecast fingers crossed for tomorrow…