Home > Day to Day > ‘Three dogs day’ and running blind — Grand Falls to Woodstock

‘Three dogs day’ and running blind — Grand Falls to Woodstock

Wedding party – at the Golden Age Club just above our campsite. Loud party music played till 1 am sharp! I managed to fall asleep with the help of earplugs.
I love my Garmins – when they work! Second unit fails ;-( – I started it up this morning and it seemed fine. Then, when we started moving, it started flickering between ‘auto start’ and ‘auto pause’. I tried several things but nothing worked. So now I have no way of tracking distance, speed, and several other key variables. DAMN!
Almost missed Hwy 105… – it was early on and involved a turn away from the highway we were on. But we caught it in time…
And then wished we had! Yesterday the road was near perfect. Hwy 105 was anything but … It actually felt like we had been transported from a lovely vibrant town to a movie set left over from the making of “Deliverance”
– narrow road, no shoulders, patch upon patch
– non-stop ups and downs; Lay-of-the-river often means running right next to a gently-sloping stream. Here it meant the sharpest climbs and descents in a long time! Over and over again!

– Many ramshackle houses in poor repair; grassy areas not mowed; rusting hulks of cars, trucks, farm machinery.

3 dog attacks within 25 km! On several occasions during the ride, in every province so far, different riders remarked about ‘no dog attacks’. All the dogs we had come across have been chained or restrained in some other way. We rode next to a house that was near the road — and then a dirty, shaggy, large dog, seemingly a cross between a golden retriever, boxer and a minor devil flew towards us, snarling and barking. I surged ahead and told Owen to do the same. He looked at the devil-dog closing in on his leg and sprang forward.  We accelerated and the dog gave chase for several seconds, then abruptly slowed down and returned to his place. The second dog, of no clear lineage, ran down a driveway towards us but then turned and ran within his property and then the next one alongside the road. Even as we sped up it kept pace. Both Owen and I took out water bottles, ready to spray it in case it came close. Then it just stopped. The third attack, just a bit further down the road, was by a large and ragged looking German Sheppard. It too came flying from next to a house just by the road, barking and baring it teeth. I had a bottle at the ready and sprayed a shot in its direction, then a second spray. I think one of the spurts hit its mark — the dog stopped abruptly and ran back to its home.
First opportunity we had we fled to Hwy 2 – the Trans Canada – given the road condition and the dog experiences we looked at our alternatives. We found that there was a bridge across the river in about 5 km, which would take us to the Trans Canada. We realized that it might be another challenging route, but at least dogs would be unlikely!
Long, hot, boring ride…and that was ok!
Owen’s GPS got us to Cozy Cabins – and it is important to enter addresses EXACTLY: Lower Woodstock, not just Woodstock. Electronics are so helpful, and can be so unintuitive and frustrating!
Tour D’Afrique is next to us…night and day – 8,000 km in 3 months, from California to St. John’s Nfld – about 10% more than the Tour Trans Canada; 110 km per day; two vans, four staff, a professional chef cooking custom meals; lunches cooked and served on the road every day, seating area ready and camping gear taken out and ready for set-up: at a cost that is about 25% higher than our tour. Guess which one I (and every one of the other riders I asked) would choose!
A lovely interview with the Woodstock Bugle – good questions and a delightful conversation. And an interesting reporter: a 10-year career running through theatre, drama, film and journalism — and teaching college is next!

imageThe Gorge — just outside the campsite. And we heard its rumbling yet soothing sounds all night.
imageThe Gorge — just outside the campsite
imageOwen comes down the free fall slope onto the hydroelectric dam bridge
imageSt. John River
image

Another river view

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Categories: Day to Day
  1. Linda McMaster
    August 15, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    Ilan, your posts are so interesting and I love the photos! Good for you – you are almost finished. This has been an epic journey and we are amazed at your fortitude and good humour. Good luck on the home stretch!!!!!!

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