Today: 116 km
To date: 1,043 km
To go: 757 km
Oh hills. Lots and lots of hills. More cumulative climbing today than any day I rode in BC – more than climbing through the Rocky Mountains! And it was an overall rough day mentally too – I almost crashed…. 4 times? Almost ran over Alex once…..
My problem was that the hills were really steep grades and I kept having troubles getting out of my clipped in shoes. That is why at the top of the first really long hill when I rode over to have a break with Alex, my tired shaky legs could not clip out – I think Alex could see the panic in my face and got out of my way. I managed to avoid crashing but was shaky for a whole new reason – my brush with death! Twice my chain fell off, almost causing me to crash again as I struggled to get free in time to stop myself from falling. The final time was at the very end of the day and again I was riding up to meet Alex and could not get out – this time Alex caught me as I started to go over. Curses.
I was having some troubled with my disc brakes – from overuse of course – because I hate getting going too fast when it is steep, or I cannot tell the condition of the road. I kept on having to dial the discs in and out to stop them from rubbing, and at one point they got to the point where metal was rubbing on metal. I made a couple of adjustments and it was…. getting by. I complained to Alex about my brakes a few times and was touched to see him waiting for me at a section of road with a 15% decline. We had never seen anything this steep – and he wanted to be sure my brakes worked.
At the end of the day, exhausted with rain pouring down, a kind man let us take refuge in his garage for a little bit, and another man offered to let us camp on his lawn. For the first time in months, I really wanted a motel room, so we politely declined. We met one more nice gentleman who wanted to practice his English, so he and I attempted a conversation half in English and half in French – neither of us doing a very good job. We bid him “Au revoir” and rode out into the rain.
A few short hills later we found a motel, devoured our grocery store dinner and watched a movie on my laptop – pure luxury!!