Home > Day to Day > Straight shot to (Winnipeg, then straight on to) Selkirk

Straight shot to (Winnipeg, then straight on to) Selkirk

Option A: 3 km on a rough gravel road, onto a narrow two-lane country road, then another, then another, then another, 117 km in total.

Option B: 300 m of a gravel road, rabbit hop across 4 lanes of the Trans Canada (Hwy #1) to a wide, smooth shoulder and clear sailing to (a) the Winnipeg by-pass or (b) right to the heart of Winnipeg, Portage & Main, then north to Selkirk.

Which would you choose? I took Option B (b). Rode with the three Mouseketeers for a while (Graeme, Ric and Jim) and then pulled ahead, ‘making hay while the sun was shining’ or, in my case, galloping across kilometers while the tailwind was blowing.

I was a bit concerned about riding right through the heart of Winnipeg, given the warnings about confusing roads and poor quality surfaces. But ‘city deprivation’ won out — I decided to chance it and experience a city I had not visited since the 80’s.
As I got closer to the city I became thankful that this was Sunday — traffic was very light. The curb lane was indeed of quite poor quality and bounced me around like cycle flotsam. But I was distracted — riding by a string of car dealerships, then a mixed industrial-commercial area, followed by low-rent residential around several parks and the Assiniboine River, and finally the gleaming office towers and high-end shops downtown, around Portage and Main — very different from what I remembered.

And as I started heading north I experienced similar ‘circles’, but in reverse order: from the shiny downtown through some very down-on-their-luck areas to industrial-commercial to car dealerships…The one difference that stood out was ‘Cemetery Row’ — starting with the Rosh Pina Jewish Cemetery and then on to cemeteries of several Christian denominations — all beautifully tended to, all on the east side of the road, and each one ‘supported’ by a headstone business on the other side of the road!

I reached the Selkirk Inn at noon on the button. Our rooms would not be ready for at least an hour. The truck was parked up front and the ladies had gone to Smitty’s. I devoured my  two sandwiches and two apples — having gone without food since breakfast, over 100 km ago!

Nice room. Air conditioning. TV. Comfy beds. A long hot shower and army-style laundry, spread out to dry on every available hanger and horizontal surface. First shave in three days, and a giggle staring at my tan lines: dark brown below the levels of my helmet, jersey sleeves and riding shorts — and lily white elsewhere :-) Fortunately I only got a couple of minor burns and peeling — so far so good!

Kristin and Jen arrived to take me out for dinner. Kristin was a friend of Shirley Case. What remarkable circles that amazing woman created! We had a wonderful time talking about so many shared areas of interest, from SchoolBOX and Shirley to education and conservation and consulting and combining households LOL — and all this while downing a most fantastic meal! And the cherry on top is that Kristin has raised a considerable amount from friends and at work, and Jen is going to do likewise over the next few days! A perfect evening.

 

“Fuelled by Equator Coffee!”

 

imageThey grow tumbleweeds here!
image

A bumper crop!

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Categories: Day to Day
  1. July 10, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    Loving the photos. Hope you’re enjoying yourself! Love, Rho

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