Jul 112015
Day 6 Juniper Beach to Pine Grove 30 kms north of Kamloops 119 km (480), 1200 HM (5643); July 11, 2015 After saying goodbye to a very nice gentleman from the west coast on a trip to spotting birds and trains for a couple of weeks, I rode up this enormously steep 1-km-hill back to Highway 1. It was only 6:40, my earliest leaving time yet and I felt like the king of the road! I had spent the evening taking care of my bike and clothes and swimming in the Thompson river so I felt truly energetic and ready to tackle anything the day might throw at a lonesome cyclist. The road undulated for about 30 km until I came across a ghost town – Deadman Junction Ranch above Deadman-River - which had obviously been created as a tourist attraction long after the last horse carriage had passed through the area with people making and losing fortunes in gold mining, servicing fellow entrepreneurs or starting a farm … And then I saw a sign indicating a garage sale and since I needed water I took the opportunity to chat with the tall man of about 40 who had his whole front yard full of the most extraordinary new stuff, the paraphernalia of many years of living in material abundance – A new computer, very good used and almost new tools, his daughter’s toys and lots more. They were getting ready to move away and he was only taking what he could fit into the rather small trailer beside his house. He’d been offering for weeks and had taken in about 7000 $ already. His daughter was happily chasing a Siamese cat around the garden and when I asked her she seemed not at all disturbed by the fact that she would be moving soon. Getting closer to Kamloops, traffic increased and when I rode down the long hill to the city I had a little surprise. I felt like in a different world after cycling for days in the relative tranquility of “only” hearing passing traffic and frightfully loud trains at night. Now, I was in a place where instead of giving me the thumbs-up signal of approval for my endeavor I now got the middle finger for riding on the road instead of on a ridiculously narrow footpath which was even interspersed with centrally placed lampposts … I had planned to end the day at Kamloops with one of three possible Warmshowers hosts but all three of them sent me a message that they would not be available. Well, then I’ll try the R&V campsite on the North Shore … I was still optimistic about that when I stopped at a bike shop to replace my cycling gloves because they had torn open after three years and were sticky like glue on the handle bar. The guy at the counter even tried to phone the campsite for me to find out if they had space available but there was no answer and then he told me there were only truck drivers and R&Vs there, anyhow, without any trees for shade. I was a bit downcast after that but went on through the huge (to my mind) city to a Walmart store, since the nice lady Christina on the highway had said that I would get concentrated Powerrade there for adding electrolytes to my water – and I definitely wanted it. At Walmarts there was a Macdonalds where I indulged in a Big Mac – I was famished! – and another hamburger on top before leaving this hospitable place on the lookout for the “Red Bridge” and a way to cross the river. The bridge turned out to be a wooden construction and a historical monument alongside a train museum. Beyond the bridge – and only then! – did I remember that I urgently needed camping gas since I would now be going to the mountains for over 400 km! What a mistake! I asked people, stopped at a motorcycling shop which I mistook for a bicycle shop because it was called “Bike Shop”, entered a “Home Building” Store, but to no avail. These nice people (they were really very friendly and tried to be helpful) made me go back across the river on another bridge to a store called “Canadian Tire” and when I asked why a tire store should have camping gas they laughed and said it was a chain of stores selling outdoor equipment! Oh, why didn’t they say so in the first place! When I got there I found the gas, even if only (of course) in a can twice the size I could possible fit into my panniers and got to talking with a young attendant. When I asked him about bear spray he said, its 40$ but I could use a sports whistle instead, he himself had grown up in some park and had chased away bears with a whistle, or with a shovel or by clapping his hands. Asked if that was good for both brown bear and grizzly he said yes (I didn’t trust him on that!) but I bought a whistle nevertheless … I had my next surprise when I got back to the bike to store my gear – I was now definitely running out of storage space in my panniers since I had bought food for several days, not knowing when the next store would turn up. My handle bar bag was about to fall off! The top two screws fixing the bag to the supporting plate were gone and a third screw was already loose. Luckily I noticed this before leaving Kamloops!! So I fastened the bag with an expander and rode back across the bridge to the north shore and the “Home Building” store. Of course I had to buy a whole packet of screws but at least I got the bag fixed. I saved two spare screws and gave the rest to a guy who was admiring my bike. Then, finally, I decided to leave this sprawling city, and look for the campsite “nearby”, called Pine Grove. These Canadians, when asked for how far a place was away, always answer like this: “Oh, there’s a campground just outside town. It’s only twenty minutes.” Great. Twenty minutes in a car doing 60 is “only” 20 kilometers. Uphill and with about 80 that day already I would have to go for 90 – 100 minutes. I was tired, but I was absolutely resolved to do it since I really wanted to get out of the city. So I kept repeating my mantra: “René, you’re doing this because you want to. Go slow, go slower, gear down, the camp will be fine. There will be a hot shower there …” At one point I had to stop for another drink – I don’t know how much water I drank that day! And then I remembered I had packed in a bottle of Powerrade additionally to the concentrated bottle from Walmart and drank it up eagerly. And, wow, it really helped me get up enough energy for the last ten ks. The campground is well organized, the lady owner is of Bavarian origin and speaks German with me, I’m sitting out on their nice patio in a soft chair and am truly enjoying my day off, the first one since I started. As soon as I get internet, I’ll post this and check on my route and campground for tomorrow. By the way; The reason I couldn't get any Internet on the first half of my free day was a car accident right in front of my campground. It somehow killed an Internet cable ...
Ornithologist and train spotter

Ornithologist and train spotter

ghost town

ghost town

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nice helmet

nice helmet

Garage sale - for moving

Garage sale - for moving

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top two screws are new - lucky there!

The top two screws are new - lucky there!

Alfred knows what this refers to ;)

Alfred knows what this refers to 😉

Getting close,only 400k

Getting close, only 400k to Jasper

Day of rest

Day of rest

 Posted by at 10:08 PM

  6 Responses to “Day 6 Juniper Beach to Pine Grove (Beyond Kamloops)”

  1. Hi René,
    deinen freien Tag hast du dir jetzt wirklich verdient!! Erhol dich gut. Und dann mit neuer Kraft voran. Wirklich sehr interessante Einsichten in das Land dort drüben erhalten wir hier frei Haus von dir. Ich freue mich auf mehr davon… Take care

  2. Ja, der Ruhetagtut gut, sitze jetzt auf der Veranda des Campingladens im bequemen Sessel und habe Strom und Internet – habe alles gewaschen (deinen Saubrkeitsstandards wirds nicht genügen), und wurde schon von zwei Amerikanern aus Seattle zum Mittagessen eingeladen. Die sind zum Fischen hier und haben merkwürdige Ein-Mann-Sessel-boote (muss noch ein Foto machen), mit denen sie auf dem See rumschwimmen. Heute hats zum ersten mal geregnet.
    Bis denn

  3. Hey Rene,
    habe gerade die ersten 5 Tage angeschaut – bin zurück von einer eher heftigeren Segelregatta Rund Bornhom (bis 8 Beaufort) und sehe deine Bilder – toll – alles Gute – und be carefull!!!!
    Denke dabei an unsere Tour letztes Jahr!

    • Hallo Nils, ich hoffe, deine Segeltour war stürmisch aber ungefährlich – das scheinen ja die adrenalinreichsten zu sein!
      Mir geht es wunderbar, wie du ja sehen kannst. „Endlich“ darf ich mal so viel und so lange radeln wie ich es möchte. Habe heute allerdings schon um 12:30 Schluß gemacht. Warum,. kannst du demnächst im Blog lesen…
      LG an Tina und Lotta

  4. Glad to hear you made it to Pinegrove campsite. Will follow your blog.

    Good luck.

    Lawrence from Home Hardware parking lot.

    • Hi Lawrence, thanks for your comment! Right now I’m in Blue River – a „city“ with a little over 230 inhabitants – if I can believe the nice old lady in the grocery store. So now I’m getting ready for the mountains!

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