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nomad adventures "bike, paddle and adventure - that´s what life is all about!" emma & scott

Day off in Canada's desert!

CANADA | Sunday, 8 July 2007 | Views [1485] | Comments [11]


500 km and we have arrived in Penticton in the desert of Canada! What, Canada has a desert, you ask ? Indeed, they grow some fine wines (which we will taste during our long-awaited day off tomorrow) and lots of ripe cherry trees ! 

We are having a great trip so far, with no major mishaps, and we are baking in the Canadian sun! Not a cloud for seven days!

A few random highlights of our trip so far (in no particular order) Check the "cycling bc 1" photo gallery for pics to go with this update.

* Yes, we have seen our first bear. It was from a distance and it appeared to be a Mom and her cub, it was a black bear, not a grizzly (luckily).  They were just crossing our trail far ahead of us, so we waited awhile and then continued forward, singing and making lots of noises to avoid any surprises :)

* Speaking of singing, Emma has now taught me the Swedish National Anthem. What else are you going to do while pedaling and trying to make noise for the bears ? We also have bear bells and just bought a new horn for our bike - like one of those little ones you had on your bike when you were young and annoyed everybody in the neighborhood ...Our throats are tired of singing :)

* Enough about bears...we've meet some really cool and interesting people. We met a BC cycle tourer who showed us a short cut over to a campsite alongside some friendly homeless ex-loggers living alongside the river. They let us camp across from them on the gravel island. Required a bit of a portage, but it was cool spot.

* We also met a gold miner with an active claim along the Tulameen River, who let us camp on his beach (A claim gives you rights to all minerals found there but isn't quite the same as owning the land). He showed us how his "hobby" of gold mining costs him more than our hobby of cycling (he just bought a new mining machine for like $5,000). He also called himself the local beach caretaker at this nice bend in the river. The white sand beach was an inviting place for us to pull out our frisbee (and to pitch our tent for the night). He even broke out his chain saw and cut firewood, gave us two fold out chairs, and a table to enjoy dinner. What service ! (and no camping fee!)

* Unfortunatley, we had to ride the Highways in some places because our rail-trail had many bridges that were washed out. We hit the highway 3 separate times in the first 3 days and got 3 flat tires! We prefer gravel grades to 18-wheelers and glass-covered shoulders.

* After our first flat, we decided to carry our bikes up a steep ravine to escape the highway and ran into two French guys who were doing the same tour we were doing.  We biked together for 3 days and shared good stories and suffered through some steep, sweaty climbs together.  48 hours later, we got another flat on the highway and said good-bye as they were continuing north and we were veering east to catch a rail-trail. Really great guys to hang with - in fact, they are promoting climate change during their ride. Check out their website: www.arctic2007.org

* You'll see in some of our pictures that we are flying the Swedish flag on the B.O.B. (for those of you not familiar, the trailer i'm towing behind my bike is called a Beast of Burden, or B.O.B. for short). However, in a sad turn of events, the flag hitched a ride in the wind and disappeared (I must have been bringing up the rear at the time b/c Emma didn't noticed until it was too late and we didn't have the energy to go back and get it). But ... there is a happy ending. Emma bought some fabric and started sowing a new flag last night and, given another night of sewing, we should be flying the blue and yellow again soon. Stay tuned for future pictures of our home-made version...

* (this is not in chronological order but...) On our first nite, we biked 8 miles from My sister's place in Seattle to the train station, hitched a ride  2 hrs north to Bellingham and got off the train at 9 pm. We had slept on the train and were totally exhausted from packing the previous 48 hrs (yes, it takes that long ...), so we just pedaled 200 meters over to a city park on the coast and pitched our tent. Camping was not allowed, but we didn't care. But we got our penalty ... twice. First, the sprinklers went on at 3 am, which jolted the tent HARD every 30 seconds for about 20 minutes.  Second, we started hearing some loud motors and then we heard a guy yell, "Hey, you guys in the tent - we're coming through with lawnmowers in about 5 minutes. Just wanted to give you a heads up." We were packed and gone in 4 minutes :)

* We have been biking on an old rail bed through BC called the Kettle Valley Railroad. It's no longer active, but makes for some nice trails. There have also been some spectacular tunnels and trestle bridges. Unfortunately the trail is much tougher than we thought, with lots of big and loose gravel. So it's taking longer than we thought, and we are a little behind schedule. Hoping to catch it up soon as we are getting stronger!

*Finally, we have a passenger with us: "gulebjorn" ("Cute yellow bear" in Swedish) He's our yellow bear that was given to us by a friend from Tijuna, Mexico. It is a well-traveled bear and so far, he likes BC, too.

That's probably enough for you to read for now. Next up, is a day off to drink some wine and eat some cherries, and then we continue east toward the Rockies, with some stops at/near Mt Baldy, Castlegar, Nelson, Cranmore, Elko, then north on the Great Divide Mtn Bike Route to Banff. By then, we'll give another update.

happy trails to all !

scott and emma

Tags: Adventures




Skönt att höra från er! Det verkar ha varit/komma att bli såväl äventyr som överrskningar! Njut nu av lite vila, ska ni orka blir "time out" dagarna jätteviktiga. Här ärdet inget vidare väder, kraftigt lågtryck, vattenståndet +50 cm över medel, dvs +80-90 mot för när ni var här sist. Småbåtarna på väg ut. Stora översvämningar i södra Sverige.
Puss, puss

  Mamma Jul 9, 2007 6:17 PM


You seem to have a really nice trip. I like all the pictures! I came home from Åre Exterme Challenge yesterday, a really nice weekend. I finished in 7th place, quite satisfied, but disapointed on the biking ledge. I have practised kayaking a lot since I came back to Sweden, but forgotten the biking totally... and Björn finally won the race!
See you and bike carefully!

  Mattias Nyström Jul 9, 2007 9:07 PM


Kul att se vad ni sysslar med, spännande. Själva hade vi ett mycket trevligt bröllop i lördags 7/7. Tyvärr lyckades Henrik slita av hälsenan på dansgolvet, så blir det gips i ca 8 veckor och ca ett halvår utan "riktig" träning.

  Malin & Henrik Jul 9, 2007 9:45 PM


Hej Emma & Scott! Härlig historia och bilder:) Ni förtjänar nog att njuta av vin och körsbär när ni gjort det så bra hittills! Jag är uppe i Överkalix nu och roar mig med myrlöpning och wakeboardåkning;) Emma – jag kollade schemat och Övik kan nog fungera, vi måste bara lösa vårt andra problem men det fixar sig nog:) Take care

  Kristin Jul 9, 2007 10:01 PM


Great pics and looks like a fantastic adventure already! It was great catching up with you in Seattle, Scott, if only for a short while. Can't wait to meet you some time soon, Emma (just missed you at the airport that day). Keep the photos and the updates coming! Safe travels.

  Sean H. Jul 10, 2007 1:09 AM


AWESOME! Keep sending the updates and the photos! Write as much as you want, most of us are sitting in the office when we get these, so it's a good distraction!

  Grant Sisler Jul 11, 2007 1:56 AM


Hi Emma and Scott,

We just arrived in Lake Louise and we'll start the Icefields Parkways this afternoon. We've cycled through amazing landscapes since we splitted, especially after Revelstoke. We did see a black bear (while going downhill at 50 km/h on a gravel road) in the middle of the road, which we scared.

We hope everything is going well for you and that you're enjoying all the sceneries you cycle through. We're thinking of you every time we're on a gravel road.

Take care,

Jean and Nicolas

  Jean and Nicolas Jul 13, 2007 7:26 AM


hej på er!
Grattis på födelsedagen, emma! Hoppas du får en fantastisk dag vad ni än hittar på! Jag är i höllviken med föräldrarna och tar det lugnt efter 4 intensiva veckor på lägret, njuter av att slippa alla 14-åringar! Åker till jenny i norrtälje på ons, ska bli kul att träffa henne men vi kommer så klart att sakna er!
kramar från susanna!

  susanna Jul 14, 2007 7:45 PM


Happy Birthday to you Emma! Wonder what you did today besides bike????love ann

  anncole Jul 15, 2007 6:18 AM


We are back in New Mexico. Marina starts a PhD program in August. I did 2 BC cycling (road) trips in the 80s. The first was around Calgary, Banff, and Lake Louise. We got snowed out on Sunwapta Pass and never made it to Jasper. I was nervous about bears as we stayed every night in our tent, but my girlfriend was unconcerned. We changed our plans when the snow came and rode the train to Vancouver and then cycled around there and over to Vancouver Island. Great brew pubs on the island and lots of fun intersting people. BC is so great. I love your journal entries. Keep em coming!

Good luck,

  Brant Hayenga Jul 15, 2007 9:46 AM


Arg! I'm stuck doing homework and catching up on office work...no fair!

Can't wait for the next update. Cheers!

  shibby Jul 16, 2007 5:06 AM

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