Home > Uncategorized > Three packed days…and then some!

Three packed days…and then some!

The first photos are of the Tour Trans Canada group – nine individuals, in the full sense of this word. Over time I will give you insights into all of them.
But to start – we got ‘oriented’. Lots of useful info. And a sense of our mates. So…seven Canadians, an Ozzie and a Brit (who, at 71, is our oldest rider and the only female.) We also have two delightful young women who support the ride: drive the truck, buy the food and prepare wonderful breakfasts and dinners, and create a light, supported atmosphere.
During the day Ricardo (Ric) invited everyone to his place for dinner and to watch the final game of the Stanley Cup. Now Ric is a real one of a kind: among other things he trims and cuts giant trees, creates gorgeous papier mache sculptures, paints lovely images, cooks, … and in a hundred years you wouldn’t guess his profession.
Ric’s partner Gina – warm, Italian, demonstrative and inquisitive, greeted us with a sumptuous meal, even more remarkable since she got so little notice. So we wolfed down superb lasagna and salad and other goodies and washed them down with an endless stream of wines and beer…and watched the Vancouver Canucks get humiliated by the clearly superior Boston Brains. What made this extra interesting was Ric being a self declared ABC – anyone but the Canucks! He seemed really pleased with the outcome. But I don’t want to leave you with a sense that he is petty. On the contrary, my sense of him is warm, funny, eccentric, opinionated and strong minded, and extremely energetic and positive.
We headed back to UBC. We were aware of the riots that had erupted a short distance away. What struck me was the eerie silence in the streets.
Next morning we had our group photo at the totem park and then cycled to ME for last minute shopping. My ‘little sister’ Jenny showed up and gave me a lovely send off. And then Ric gave us a wonderful tour of False Creek, East Van and the burbs before Landen took over and guided us along a terrific bike path, out of the city.
We rode as a group till a coffee break. Then Bill, Graham and I took off…and proceeded to miss a key map instruction. This added about 10 gravel path kms to our ride, before a local rider set us straight. We were making good progress, riding in the generous shoulders through Maple Ridge. Then I had no chain! I used Les’ training and a master link to effect a quick and hopefully enduring repair. And the rest of the 82 km ride (92 for us) was uneventful.
Set up tent. Laid out sleep gear. Great dinner. Lots of conversing. Sleep.
The first night of camping went well. Everything went back smoothly into respective bags. Truck loaded. Great breakfast. Time to go.
Bill and I agreed to ride together. He is short, wiry, a few years older than me…and a strong rider. We seem to be very well matched.
We averaged just under 25 kph for the first two hours and stopped at the quaint Oasis Cafe in Agassiz. Free WiFi! Caught up with email and learned from Rachael, the Cycle4SchoolBOX coordinator, that a reporter in Hope wanted to interview me. Cool.
We continued riding. We climbed a few long, steep hills. My chain started slipping. Not good. Bud (of Cycle Canada, who runs the ride) told us earlier we wouldn’t find a bike store for a couple of days. But we took a chance and asked a young cyclist in Hope. He pointed is to the only sports store in town. Where the wonderful owner confirmed he had one suitable chain, installed it on the spot, gave us a free extra master link and offered an unsolicited discount on a couple of items I picked up. Wow!
He also gave us clear directions to the Othello Tunnels campground. A short distance away I spotted the office of The Standard…walked in, introduced myself and had a lovely interview and photo op.
The final few kms were the toughest part of the ride – a steep unending climb, followed by a steep descent. And we were the first in!
Later we visited the tunnels. But it is getting late and I haven’t showered! More to come…

imageFrom left: standing: Graham, Chris, Jim, Bill, Isabel, Landen, moi
From left, crouching: Ric, Owenimage
imageGina and Ric…forever!
imageFalse Creek, downtown Vancouver
imageOn the road to Hope – gas line suspended over the road…and about 200m of the Fraser River, to the right!!
imageHope is known for its chainsaw carved statues
imageStreet in Hope, leading to mountain, leading to … snow!
imageOthello Tunnels — a fascinating story in Canada’s history…
imageThe river outside Othello Tunnels

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Jing
    June 21, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    Thanks for taking us with you on the journey with nice pictures and great stories. Sending you lots of WB energy.

  2. Electa
    June 19, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    Thinking if you. Keep up the good work. Jamais Abandonner!

  3. June 18, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    it sounds like a jam-packed adventure thus far. Thank goodness you found the sports store and could get a new chain and how amazing that, even with all of that, and granting and interview, you and your cycling companion were first to camp! Enjoy, enjoy and we can’t wait to read about your continuing exploits.

    Rhona & Jen

  4. Avi
    June 18, 2011 at 7:57 pm

    Sounds like a great and adventurous begining Ilan, ans I hope it will get better and better. Have fun….:-))

    Love, Kathy & Avi

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