November 14th 2014
I left my house around 1000 this morning. I wanted to give the roads time to “warm” up a bit before I took off for the interior of BC. I knew it was going to be cold out today but I was a bit surprised as to how low the temps dropped. I never do much long distance or short distant riding in these conditions other than riding to work. I could not help myself to take the “chance” that the weather reports I looked at for this area, Princeton, BC and down to Leavenworth, WA were going to be correct. COLD but sunny and dry.
Temperature range for today was 5C or 41F as low as -15C or 4F. I ride with a heated liner and gloves along with my heated grips. This set up was pretty good for today except I need to protect my feet better. Instead of riding with the ball of my foot on the peg, I need to remain more flat-footed to have the wind hit the front of the boot instead of the top. My left foot froze for a bit but I was able to shake it out while riding to get the circulation back. My right foot was another story about 100 KM’s outside Princeton, BC. Remember, I do not ride usually in this weather. Just tempting fate a bit. 😉
It was very windy at certain points. I mean huge gusts. The Fraser River looked like it hat whitecaps and when I stopped at Harrison Hot Springs the wind was kicking up sand into face and the lake was very rough.
So, cold and windchill were challenging but it was so sunny and beautiful out I didn’t mind.
I took back roads. Some I have never been on before. Decided to head northeast rather than take Rt 3. My initial destination was Osoyoos, BC but my right foot was frozen so I stopped in Princeton, BC to warm it up. Not a big deal to end short of Osoyoos at all. I will still try to make a loop of some sort. Tomorrow I hope to get to Leavenworth, WA. Never been there and might stay the night.
Throughout the day the only cold part of me were my feet. I realized how to remedy this by simply adjusting my feet on the pegs. Solution? Be more flat-footed on the pegs so the wind hit the toe of my boots rather than the top. It worked well except I felt I was riding my brake with my right foot so it kept going back to the “proper” riding position. Finally, when it froze up there wasn’t anything I really could do at that point. Plus, it was getting dark and I needed to stop. This area is loaded with deer and not worth the risk to ride at dusk and definitely not after dark out here.
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It was pretty chilly out all day I hardly wanted to get off the bike to take pictures because I did not want to turn off my heated gear. Most shots are my usual one-handed on the fly pictures from my rolling bike.
I ride a lot and have been up this way many many times. How I entertain myself is going back at different times of the year. I swear if you do this the same road, same area will feel so different and new.
As for clearing my head? I am actually getting sick of me referring to all my rides as clearing my head. For those out there…my separation is complete and I am actually healing from that. Feels like we have been apart for so long I am beginning to forget what it was like to be with her. Now that is where all these rides really mean something. I am riding solo, I’ve now done thousands of KM’s making new memories for me. I love to ride and this is my blog. So, in the end I have proven being a solo rider makes sense to me. Presently there are things that still don’t make sense but I hope in time they will. Riding will always be a part of my life no matter where I live. So, clearing my head? More like gaining independence and learning more about me.
Hate freight trains when I am home and stuck at a crossing. LOVE them on the road.
Met this really nice First Nations guy at a gas station outside Merritt. He says to me, “too cold to be on your fancy bike. Come back to my home with my family we have some really good moose stew and I can find you a mat to sleep on.” Such a nice gesture but not that tempted to accept. I hate the idea of eating moose stew and sleeping on a mat but I really thanked him because he was so serious.
So, I would call this day one of my “Winter” ride. Local folks say this is a freak cold spell and are looking forward to getting back to warmer temps by Monday. I did OK today considering I have never been in this weather pattern before. At least it didn’t rain or snow. Crap, I probably just cursed myself. Tomorrow I head to the States to Leavenworth. Again, never been there and I hear the ride down should be quite nice. Until tomorrow, thanks for reading and following along. Leslie