January

My room felt pretty empty after Bev flew back to Calgary but I stayed put for a couple days – there was rain in the forecast. And, in this case, the forecast was correct. Loreto’s streets are not designed to accommodate much rain so a couple of inches of water collected on the roads. Most …

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Christmas in Loreto

Christmas in a resort town isn’t really our thing. When we were younger and had more energy, we might have driven the 2500 km of winter roads to camp and climb in Joshua Tree. More recently, they have been family occasions, at home in Calgary. I had expected to be cycling down the Baja peninsula …

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Into the Baja…

Before I returned to university in the late ’90s, I was a carpentry contractor in the wonderful mountain town of Canmore, Alberta. One of the people I worked with was a French carpenter, Jean Daniel (JD) Recompsat. When I moved to Calgary to study, we fell out of touch. When he rode the Great Divide …

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Westward…

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument I slept out at Alamo Canyon campground, a ‘primitive’ camping area with just four sites. It was the first time in a while to be out under the stars. Magical. In the morning, I took my camera for a walk up the canyon. Inadvertently, my left hand brushed a cholla …

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South to the Saguaro…

I finally escaped the clutches of Moab and headed south through Monument Valley to Flagstaff. After the magnificence and scale of the Canyonlands, Monument Valley always seems a little underwhelming to me. It is still a scenic drive, down Route 191. Pre-ski-season, hotel prices in Flagstaff were very reasonable (especially compared to the Sedona area, …

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Moab (2)

Riding I am not (yet) a mountain-biker. I’ve ridden maybe a dozen trails, all involving involuntary dismounts when the going got more than straightforward. But I’m keen to keep trying. My bike is built for adventure-touring. It’s steel-framed (read ‘heavy’) and has no suspension. It’s tough, and can be welded, if necessary, in just about …

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Moab (1)

Before my premature bailout from the GDMBR, Bev had booked flights to Loreto, in the southern Baja, so that we could spend Christmas and New Year together. I would need to book flights, too, now that I wouldn’t be riding down the Baja California peninsula. I wasn’t ready to commit to dates so soon after …

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False Start!

Friday 10th July, 2018. Calgary A bit of a frantic day, packing and doing last minute adjustments to a strange rear-brake problem. The brake caliper wouldn’t adjust so that the rear wheel would spin freely without moving washers from one side of the brake attachment to the other. A case of mechanical ineptitude on my …

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The Icefields Parkway Shakedown Ride

This was a last minute decision: do a test ride before starting my tour south from Banff. There is new equipment to test: a new trailer, an almost totally new bicycle build, including frame (so, essentially, an almost totally new ride), new tubeless tyres… And I’ve never cooked on tour before, preferring restaurants where available …

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The Upper Loire

  Tuesday 1st August, Sully-sur-Loire, 63 km Unpaved to start, then cobbles. A mixture of roads and paths in the heat. Our map showed two campsites around Sully. The first didn’t appeal very much so we pushed on into town, where the chateau, with a large green moat, was breathtakingly beautiful. The second campground had …

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Chateaux Country, continued

Friday 28th July, La-Ville-aux-Dames, 73 km Paved trails helped us put on some miles after our unusually (even for us) late start. Getting into and through Tours was well signed and surprisingly easy. Getting out of town was not quite so straightforward after I ignored a sign telling us to go west (in order to …

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Chateaux Country

Monday 24th July, Saumur, 55 km More pretty Loire Valley countryside, and small towns and villages. Again, nothing spectacular but a nice gentle feel to it all. We stopped at a church, Église Saint-Aubin. The high stone ceiling and arches were similar to those of Église Saint-Symphorean that we’d seen the previous day. Later, in …

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