Oh, Canada…and Birthdays!

Well, we’re back in the states–hello New York!  It’s really beginning to feel like we’re almost home. The towns are looking more New England-like, the roads are curvier and lined with apple orchards rather than corn fields.  But we’ve still got another two weeks exactly until we reach our final destination.  Here’s a quick summary of last week:

August 4: 82 miles from Sombra, Ontario to Port Stanley, Ontario

image

We crossed into Canada the day before and camped just over the border at Sombra. Then we had a lovely trek through farmland to Lake Erie, where the charming town of Port Stanley awaited us. We stayed with another Warm Showers host, and they treated us like kings!  Their beautiful home was right on the water, and we sat on their screened in porch while enjoying an excellent feast of fish, salad, potatoes, bread, corn and ice cream and chatting about their many sailing adventures around the world. So wonderful to meet such great and generous people!  Thank you M & B!!

image

August 5: 26 miles from Port Stanley to Port Burwell

This was our pseudo-off-day. After a leisurely and delicious breakfast with our hosts, we set off for a very short day along the water to our next stop.  Once at Port Burwell, we got ice cream, sat by the lake, and played with kittens. Pretty great day!

image

August 6: 95 miles from Port Burwell to Low Bank

Lake Erie smells bad. Not all of it, to be sure, but as we began to follow a cove along its eastern-northern shores, an unfortunate algae bloom soured the beautiful views a bit.  Oh, well!  We plugged our noses, joked about it with some locals, and enjoyed some of the most beautiful lakeside biking of the whole trip.

image

August 7: 90 miles from Low Bank, Ontario to Middleport, NY

Another big day, but a beautiful one, too!  Most of this day was spent on bike paths!  Yay!  We left Canada with a bang, taking in the mighty beauty of Niagara Falls. What an approach–we followed along the edge of rushing water, until suddenly we saw mist in the distance and the abrupt crashing end of the world as the water fell hundreds of feet straight down. Not a bad spot for a lunch break.

image

The people watching was top notch, too!  We hadn’t seen so many different kinds of people from all over the world since leaving New York City!

image

After crossing the border into the US, it didn’t take long for us to hop onto the Erie Canal bike path, which was awesome.

image

We ended our day camped along the shores of the canal, where we caught a beautiful sunset, and then saw an amazing lightening storm in the distance. Huge!  We caught the enormous storm at 4 am. Pretty intense!

August 8: 73 miles from Middleport, NY to Macedon, NY

We hit 4,000 miles!!!!!  We spent the entire day on the Erie Canal bike path watching ducks and the very occasional boat pass by. Upon skirting past Rochester, we got soaked in a massive thunderstorm downpour!  We had a blast biking through puddles of mud and grit, and probably reached the apex of disgusting on this day.

image

Looking like Jackson Pollock canvasses, we rolled into Macedon just in time for a community BBQ!!!  The fire fighters let us use their showers, and once clean, we met the mayor and joined in on the food and sang along to old Irish tunes played by a local folk band.

image

August 9: 96 miles from Macedon, NY to Port Ontario, NY

This was one of those days that just kicks your butt. It rained on us most of the day– a steady, unforgiving rain that seeped into every nook and cranny.  Just as the rain began to ease up, we got a flag tire–our first since Oregon!  But we got it all patched up and continued on, our desperate goal being our much-needed stop at a laundromat.  We got there, but used a faulty washer, so we had to run our laundry through the machine THREE times!  It probably needed it….By 5:30 we were done and had another 25 miles to bike to the next campsite.  At least by this time the rain had stopped, and we watched the most beautiful sunset as we made our exhausted way to camp. We arrived just as the last blood-red rays sunk below the horizon beyond Lake Ontario. What a way to end an otherwise rough day.

image

August 10: 59 miles from Port Ontario, NY to Boonville, NY

Today is Ian’s 26th birthday!!!!!!!!!!!  It was an absolutely beautiful day–sunny, cool, crisp weather as we began the climb into the foothills of the Adirondacks.  After Christine was caught and yelled at for peeing in the woods (we’re in the middle of NOWHERE!), our day improved when we found the most delicious burgers yet at a tiny hole in the wall restaurant.  Ian’s helping of banana cream pie wasn’t bad either 🙂

image

3 thoughts on “Oh, Canada…and Birthdays!

  1. I kinda love the genteel green of your Erie Canal Bike Trail pic. Seems…civilized, ya know? It feels different having you in New York. Welcome home. Looking forward to joining you for the New England Victory Lap!

  2. Guys, I just got back from a month out of the country and read through this whole amazing record of your journey. It made my day and brought me out of a New York apartment finding funk. What an incredible experience. Sending you love. See you on your return.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s