First tour, heading out of Kamloops (1 Viewer) Featured Photos Travelogue 

ali

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After spending a year in Kamloops weathering the second and third COVID waves, i got my vaccinations and resolved to get back on the road again. I was really inspired by the posts of @BikePunky and @superphoenix getting started without much gear to give bike touring a shot.

When i first got into Kamloops i bought a "cheap" hybrid bike for around us$500 - just a step above the Canadian Tire/Walmart models, but not really a pro bike by any means. It helped me cycle the trails around town, and for a few hundred more dollars i got it ready to go for touring.

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Basically what i picked up was a sturdy rear rack, two rear panniers, two oversize water bottle holders, and some straps. At first i tried attaching stuff using paracord and velcro, but eventually i splurged and now i can highly recommend Rok Straps (as used by motorcyclists) and Voile straps (as used by skiers). They seem like yuppie solutions, but life is so, so much easier when you can easily adjust the length of a stretchy strap to make sure that all your gear is sitting just right.

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As detailed over on my backpacking to bikepacking thread, i also got some wilderness survival gear like a water filter (worth its weight in gold), tent and sleeping bag. After spending the last few days in weather where it is literally raining ash from the sky, i am definitely happy i went for a tent over a bivvie or tarp.

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Right now i am on day 5. I have no plans on where i am going, i'm houseless and everything i own is on the bike. I vaguely want to avoid steep hills because i am not super-fit, and i also want to try go south before it gets too cold to easily cycle in Canada. But who knows when the US border will open? I'd like to get to Osoyoos here in BC, and in Alberta i'd like to see Milk River. I love the arid, flat plains and their dramatic hoodoos and rock formations. Don't much care for mountains and trees, but there's a ton of those in Canada so i'm trying to appreciate them for what they are.

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Unfortunately the wildfires here are absolutely brutal right now.

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After two days riding without a mask i switched to wearing an N95 respirator. It really helps, i recommend it for anyone cycling in the west right now.

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My number one learning is to buy chain lube. I skimped on bike maintenance gear because i figured i would just drop into a bike shop whenever i needed a tune-up, but cycling in these dusty conditions the chain gets dried out, rusted and squeaky in like 2 days. Just buy the lube and take it along.

Another thing i learned is not to tuck stuff in or tie it with a canvas line. I lost a flip-flop somewhere zooming down a bumpy gravel road. Better to cinch those Rok Straps tight, or stuff the thing inside one of your bags.

I'll try keep this thread updated with photos and info as i go.
 
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HitchBiker

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Reminds me I rolled down the whole coast without posting a single picture on my thread. Good to see someone new out doing it. Mask was also a good decision. Amazes me how many cyclists I know right now talking about how tired they are all the time, but aren’t wearing smoke filtering masks. It’ll slowly make you feel like you have flu symptoms. Hope it goes well!
 

ali

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I don't have good enough internet to post a bunch of pictures just yet, but i have made it down to US border (which is still closed) so wanted to update.

Some interesting points along the way... As mentioned on Tent pegs: are they worth it? i haven't been able to peg anywhere because the ground is so dry and rocky here. So here is some product placement for Voile straps, which make a nice loop for holding down the fly if you have some rocks.

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At first when i was cycling mostly down ranch roads and logging roads i attached a hi vis vest to my backpack, but the last few days i've had to head onto the highway here and there so i've felt safer actually wearing it. I'm using a class 2 hi vis vest, same kind that highway workers use, because i think that is more likely to make drivers sit up and take notice than a Tour de France jersey. Sometimes i forget i'm wearing it and people think i'm a firefighter when i walk into a store.

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I had my first real breakdown after bombing along the highway for about 5km (detour from an incomplete rail trail). My back tire just went flat. I pumped it up, flat again, then i replaced the tube, but then i noticed it going "thump thump" on every rotation. I thought i had broken a spoke or bent the rim, so called a bike store to see if they could get me going again. I was very lucky to be close to town.

Turns out the sidewall of my tire had packed it in. I didn't take a photo, but basically it looked like someone had grabbed a knife and slashed up the side of the tire, close to the rim. I had noticed my bike sliding sideways a bit from time to time, and figured it was just unbalanced weight in the panniers, but now i think this tire damage might've started even before i started touring and it just got worse and worse till the highway stretch where a big bump or perhaps the glass and debris on the shoulder finally collapsed it.

Anyway, they replaced my stock back tire (Kenda Bitumen 38 plus Mr Tuffy liner) with a Schwalbe Marathon 32. The cheaper option was a Michelin Protek, but the bike store guy said he rode across Canada with a Marathon on the back and didn't get a single flat so i'll trust it. I posted a pic of my current setup on Picture of your loaded bicycle but here is another one from the other side.

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I also picked up a wing mirror, which is super helpful for riding on the roads. It makes a big difference not to have to turn my whole body to see if or how close a car is, because fully loaded the bike can be a bit too wobbly to turn safely. On the other hand, having the mirror on the left hand side is a pain in the ass any time you want to lay your bike down, e.g. for locking to your tent, because it's exactly the side you want to face down (with chain/derailleur up). Oh well.

Last pic is from the Kettle Valley Railway, i rode a little bit of the trail and camped up there to get a feel for it a few days ago. This is one of the least sandy and boulder-y parts. There are sections where it's like riding on a beach, and other sections where it's basically railroad ballast. Pretty much wild camping all the way along. It'd be a lot more comfortable to ride on a fat mountain bike, but i met a hobo last year who passed through it on a co-op Frankenbike with a milk crate on the back so i'll be giving it a shot after i finish this loop along the US border.

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ali

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After getting a lift into the Similkameen to hang out with a friend for a day, i biked back into Okanagan Valley over Richter's Pass on highway 3. It's a pretty easy climb and for me is the most scenic part of Canada yet. I just love that arid, barren landscape.

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That was just a practice, though, for Anarchist Pass, which is one of the more brutal climbs in Canada. It's not super steep (average around 5%), but it keeps climbing for almost 20km without much of any flattening off. Here's a picture from halfway up.

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I'm not afraid to pull over to take a rest, drink some water or eat a snack, so it turned out to be less bad than i expected. The long road climbs that rarely push above 6% are definitely easier than going up logging roads that are all gravel and rubble and regularly exceed 10%.

After the mountain i took a break by getting onto the tail end of the Kettle Valley Railway and then riding the entire Columbia and Western railway. These rail trails are pretty easy going on a loaded touring bike, you don't really need a mountain bike although the mountain bike nerds you meet along the way cringe at trying to tackle them with a 32 rear tire. The grade is never above 3% and even though there is a lot of loose sand and rocks, it's not a big deal to push hard through them or slow bumpity bump over. Worst case you can get off and push for a bit, but i rarely had to except when i went into a logging road pull-out to try get a cool photo.

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Remember to take a light on the rail trails, at least up here some of them go through long, unlit tunnels. Also in several sections you are out of mobile signal and many miles away from any populated areas, so you will be backcountry camping with all that entails (bears, collecting water from creeks etc). The views are awesome, though.

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Active logging roads are a much rougher ride, so it pays off to head to a coffee shop or bar beforehand and see if you can get the inside scoop from a fellow rider on how torn up they are. My rule so far has been to never plan a route on a logging road more than about 20km away from a main road or settlement, that way i can always turn back - even walking - if it's too rough.

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So far, so good, though. I am now in Fernie BC about to cross Crowsnest Pass into the prairies. I think the riding will be a lot easier there (no hills), but services are much more spread out and i'm not sure where to get water or camp.

I thought i would be doing a lot of stealth camping on this trip, but the truth is i have mostly been going to established campsites - either in provincial parks, or in rec sites, or sometimes a family/RV camping site.

In provincial parks and rec sites you pay about $15, but if you're in the backcountry or a "user serviced" site then it's free. Family campsites max out around $35. This is much, much cheaper than a motel, and i've found it's worth it to be able to have a warm shower, launder clothes and get on the wifi. They're also a good spot to meet people who used to bike tour when they were younger, or occasionally another active tourer.

Honestly, if you have the cash, i would recommend "legit" camping, especially after a long day cycling. I have done several 100km+ days now and at the end i can't imagine having to try find a stealthy spot, and then pack up again quickly in the morning instead of just lazily giving yourself an hour or two to warm up, eat breakfast, dry the condensation off your tent etc.

Oh, the other thing i learned is if you do hit those 100km days (like 60 miles and up), you end up eating twice as much food as you expected. It's important to budget for that, because it might seem like you are saving money by skipping over an expensive town or campsite to press on to somewhere cheaper or free, but then you eat two days worth of food along the way. Also, there's less opportunity for sightseeing.

That's it for my tips, i didn't want to bore you with too many scenic photos although i have many. Let's finish up with a couple of shots random tourists offered to take of me.

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Since the last update i crossed into the prairies, and have lots of new experiences to share. My biggest discovery is that the prairies are not flat. I mean, some sections are very flat, but there are also very hilly sections that are interrupted by deep coulees (valleys) that are hard work to cycle out of.

Here is an example of going through a pass in some hills of the north/south continental divide.

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The grade is deceptively slight, in a lot of places it's less than 5% so you think it's not going to be a big deal, but the difference in the prairies is that it's unrelenting - you are just stuck there at that grade for 5km or 10km without any breaks. It means you need to keep on cycling hard without any rests. It's more of an endurance exercise than the short intense workouts of the mountains.

Another thing you will deal with is very, very strong headwinds and crosswinds. Some of the towns i passed through the standard (not gusts) wind speed was 40kph/25mph. This is almost impossible to cycle into and having it as a crosswind is pretty dangerous, especially on gravel roads, because your whole bike gets blown sideways on the road while you are cycling forwards.

Here is a picture of the kind of gravel road you want to avoid if possible.

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You can see that it looks really clean and pretty (aside from the massive cloud of dust on the left, which was kicked up by a passing truck). This means it's just been freshly graded, so the "road" is basically just a mound of sand with an inch thick of loose gravel on top of it. This is the fucking worst to cycle over because your back wheel can't get any traction, you just sink into the gravel like it's quicksand. The trick is to try find a piece of the road that has already been worn down and cycle in that compressed dirt. If you find the perfect groove it will almost be as smooth and fast as riding on a sealed road.

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You will want to be very fucking careful when you go down a coulee or big hill on a gravel road. If you see a sign like this, watch out.

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The problem is that when you are zooming down gravel at 9%, you are trying to stick to the well-worn groove so you can keep traction, but because there is inevitably going to be a stiff crosswind, you almost certainly will be blown sideways into the loose gravel. There is no stopping this - if you turn you will definitely stack it. Hopefully you have disc brakes, then you can ride the brakes as you go downhill and let your bike slowly slide into the gravel and keep on sliding sideways until you hit a section with some traction again, or else get slow enough you can put a foot down to get rebalanced. So far i have only wiped out once, and fortunately i was going slow enough it didn't cause any injury, but these gravel downhills in the prairies are a much less enjoyable experience than logging road downhills or sealed downhills in the mountains.

The prairie provinces do have some small mountains of their own, and imo they are much more fun to ride than the mountain provinces, because there is less tree cover so you can really enjoy being up there on the hill. Don't let mountain bike nerds stop you from going up a trail because your tires aren't wide enough or whatever. Go out and have fun.

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Of course, you will have to push your bike at certain points where it gets ridiculous.

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But hitting trails like this should be no problem on a touring bike assuming you have everything strapped on tight. Maybe a bit nicer with a front suspension.

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It's worth it to cycle these trails because then you might get to camp somewhere like this.

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That's it for my prairie update, on gravel roads and tackling some mountain bike singletrack. See you next time!

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ali

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Since i'm not headed anywhere in particular, i don't really care if a trail takes me on a detour. I've also been zig-zagging around to deliberately go through regional parks, provincial parks, national parks, logging roads, rec sites etc so i have a more interesting journey than just some east west highways. A lot of trails are already on OpenStreetMap, but some of them i just ask the locals wherever i am, or look at maps near the trailhead.

You bring up another point though and this is a big deal in the prairies - it can be a long fucking way between services. Towns are 50km apart or maybe even further, and some of them don't have any services at all. Some only have a grocery store, or a gas station, or a bar, or a diner. That is, only one of those things. No town smaller than 1000 people has all four. There are no rest stops anywhere, no public toilets, very few trees for shade, nowhere to get water etc. So you need to plan carefully how much water you have versus how far the next town with services is. And you can't rely on Google or OSM because so many of these prairie towns are dying, so even if supposedly there is a campsite or gas station at the next town, it may not be there any more when you get there. Talking to locals is really key here.
 
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Matt Derrick

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Since i'm not headed anywhere in particular, i don't really care if a trail takes me on a detour. I've also been zig-zagging around to deliberately go through regional parks, provincial parks, national parks, logging roads, rec sites etc so i have a more interesting journey than just some east west highways. A lot of trails are already on OpenStreetMap, but some of them i just ask the locals wherever i am, or look at maps near the trailhead.
Looking at your pics, that seems to be paying off, and totally makes sense.
 

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I was going to write a bit more about how i navigate around when i travel, but i will leave that for a future update. Instead i will tell you all about the disaster that struck this morning.

Actually, it probably struck two days ago.

Several spokes on my back wheel have gotten busted. I don't know exactly when or how it happened, but thinking back i definitely remember two or three worrying "ping" sounds a few days ago that sounded like a spoke breaking but i didn't worry about at the time because the bike continued to cycle fairly normally.

Two days ago after the "pings" i felt like the back end was a bit sluggish, but put it down to being tired after cycling into a ferocious headwind all day. Then yesterday morning i woke up and my back tire was flat. This has happened before, a slow overnight flat, so i repumped it and decided to head slowly in the direction of Brandon, Manitoba for a new tube - a lazy 3 or 4 days away depending on how much sightseeing i did.

Anyway, this morning i noticed the broken spokes. And they might well be the cause of the slow puncture too. I was in the middle of the forest on a First Nations reserve, almost 200km from Brandon.

So today i put as much weight on the front of my bike as possible and booked it up the sealed road to Virden, Manitoba. Every single bump stressed me out, but i made it. Then tomorrow i have a straight line down the Trans Canada Highway to Brandon and a bike store where they can get me a new wheel.

Wish me luck. I think i'll need it. I've avoided the Trans Canada Highway this entire trip, and literally every time i got close to a busy highway something fucked up. Coming into Kelowna i was forced into the 97 (fork of the Trans Canada Highway going through Okanagan, an incredibly busy highway) and my back tire side wall blew out. Then around Osoyoos i was on highway 3 and had to cross 97 again and that's where i got the previous slow flat. And now going from 13 onto 39 around Weyburn (heading toward one of the busiest border crossings in Canada) this latest bullshit happened. Moral of the story is busy highways suck balls.

Also it probably helps to know how to change a spoke and have spare just in case, because biting your nails hoping you can get out the middle of nowhere before your wheel buckles sucks. Also, maybe, check your spokes regularly and don't just assume things are fine because you are still rolling forwards, more or less.
 

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Made it to the next town, my wheel was almost fully busted by the end of it, replacing spokes and re-truing - if it even would've worked - would cost more than a new wheel. I got a new wheel from the store, but i got some tips online that a possibly cheaper way to do it (especially in a larger town) could be to check local classifieds and buy a second-hand Walmart or Canadian Tire bike with the same size tires and use the wheel off that.

So, back to the story of how i travel.

Basically the way that i tend to travel - and this is true whether i am biking, greyhounding, or just wandering around in a town i already know - is i look at the map and identify the "green areas" and then head toward them, preferably not along the main roads. Usually a green area is a dedicated park, whether a city park, a state/provincial park, a rec site/rec area or a national park. It's not necessarily that i want to go there in particular, it's just a landmark to head toward, which may or may not have something nice to see at the end. Sometimes i only get halfway there and something else seems more interesting so i go that way instead.

In some towns or some parts of the world there are no "green areas" on the map, so sometimes i look for large "white areas", which usually means a not-built-up area. In the country that's usually farmland so no go, but in the city it could be an undeveloped industrial area, or an abandoned construction site that might be fun to BMX around in. Bonus points if you can see a dotted line around there, since it means some other OpenStreetMap user already recorded a hikeable trail in the area.

My main concern is making sure that wherever i go, i can get back to a safe place (e.g. somewhere with camping or water supply) before dark. So i don't get too ambitious with going out to some random place in the middle of nowhere unless i know i am prepared. There's still lots to explore even within that constraint.

Usually i don't make plans of where i want to go until the evening before, or even that morning. I'll also stop into as many bars, diners and cafés as i see fit to get tips from the locals along the way.

For example, in the prairies, around 8 or 9am every morning there is always a group of farmers sitting around the local diner or gas station drinking coffee. Strike up a conversation, say where you think you might be headed, then they can give tips as to whether it's worth it, or if there's a back way that could be more interesting. One day i was just heading out of the diner planning to go to a particular village along some back roads, and a guy heading in asked me where i was off to and then suggested i take a different (longer) route because it was more scenic. I would never have expected that route to be more scenic because it seemed like more of a main road, but he was right - and he even suggested a place along the way where i could stealth camp because he knew it was a property nobody was staying at right now.

It does often cost a bit of money (price of a coffee or a beer) to get the insider info, but for me that's part of the fun of traveling - to be able to talk to the locals. Sometimes they even buy your drinks or a whole meal because they think it's so neat to have an interested traveler coming through who isn't just following a guidebook and hitting up the main tourist spots. The best people to meet, in my experience, are farmers, traveling laborers (construction usually), other (former) bike tourers, adventurous RVers (truck camper) and anglers/hunters/outdoorsmen. They tend to know the back roads and (unlike mountain bikers or hikers) know enough to tell you if the road to a trail head is going to be a stretch, and not just talk about the trail itself or pass judgement on the fatness of your tires.

I figure that it pays off to not have any particular destination in mind, and not to set your expectations too high. Usually i find when i am looking forward too much to seeing a particular place i just get disappointed. To be honest i prefer the surprise these days. If i travel to a "green area" and it's just a crappy boat launch in scummy water filled with weeds, oh well, it's still an excuse to get off the bike, eat some food, stretch, then move on. As long as it's more-or-less on the way to your end-of-day spot, who cares if it took an extra hour? Sometimes it's an awesome view. Sometimes there is a short trail there that is fun to zoom around on. Or maybe you'll meet another interesting person with a new tip.

For me traveling is more about the journey than the destination. I just want to keep moving, keep seeing new stuff, and since i started bike touring, holy shit it is almost the perfect way to travel. You never need to wait for someone else, you never need to follow a schedule, or get off where the bus/train/ride is dropping off, you can just go wherever you want, whenever you want, and change your mind on drop of a hat. I love it, it feels like true freedom to me.
 

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Well, to nobody's surprise, the American government extended their closed land border policy and it will be at least October 21 or probably later before anyone can enter across a land border for "non-essential" reasons like travel, tourism, going to visit family and so on.

This put me in a quandary. Do i press on east - across the remote and cold expanse of northern Ontario, and hope to make it to a friend's place before the snow falls - or do i give up touring for the season?

Neither. I am traveling very light and my gear will not hold up below freezing temperatures. Also, personally, i hate the cold and the rain, and even some of the autumn weather i have been caught in over the past couple weeks has been unpleasant for me. So i am going to delve into the emergency savings bucket and pony up for the rich person's ticket to America - a flight. It's utterly ridiculous and blatantly classist that people are allowed to fly across but not drive/ride/walk across, but that's American immigration policy for ya.

What that means is today i am stopping my tour. I haven't been tracking miles or hours or anything like that because i am not interested in comparing numbers, but just for a ballpark figure... It's been 40 days since i left Kamloops, and i am now in Winnipeg. I cycled every single day, and slept in a different place every night. According to Google Maps i have traveled about 2500km (1500 miles). That's probably a bit of an under-count since it doesn't track when your phone is off or outside of cell range. I know when i started i was doing around 50km per day, but over the past couple weeks i have been exceeding 100km (60 miles) every day. It definitely got easier the longer i went. Also, i started paying a lot more attention to the wind forecast and tried to plan my days so i would maximize the amount of tailwind (or at least minimize headwind/crosswind, especially toward the end of the day).

Since i have been sharing road photos with you, here are a couple more road types that i haven't shown yet.

Here is a picture from when i had to go along the Trans Canada Highway in that emergency trip to get a new wheel.

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This is a rare quiet moment on the highway, but one really important thing is see how wide the shoulder is! As long as you don't hit any construction (which i did, for 25km, and it fucking sucked) it's actually a pretty chill ride. You can't really get off anywhere interesting because it just takes the flattest route and misses out most of the sights, but if you want to make those miles, it's probably worth getting on from time to time, especially if you are far away from any towns or cities, which seems to mean there's less trash and debris too.

Here is riding through a dirt road in a freshly plowed field.

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This is the kind of road you really wouldn't want to go down in the rain, it'd probably just turn to mud.

There have been several places where i got stuck with a "road closed" sign and barriers that would block most motorized vehicles. Sometimes, like in this case, it's absurd to close the road to pedestrians or cyclists, because it's literally just a 50m dam crossing that shaves kilometers off the road route. So... fuck it, you just go, right?

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I'll leave you with a couple more sightseeing photos.

Morning in the prairies...

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Taking a breather by the side of the road...

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Preparing some lunch...

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In the International Peace Garden, where people can visit south of the 49th parallel without crossing American customs...

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Lake Manitoba sunset...

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Assuming i can get all the shit done in time (boxing up the bike and negative COVID test), i will arrive in Minneapolis on Thursday to continue cycling south, following the birds toward warmer weather.
 

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Nice, well kudos to you for continuing on despite the bs with the border. Do you have an ultimate destination going south? Seems like the cold will be chasing you all the way down... You could follow the Mississippi I suppose, all the way to new Orleans...
 

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Okay, i made it into the USA. It was a tough border crossing (like most Canadian airports, in Winnipeg you cross American customs inside the departure airport). I was sent into secondary security check line, where they send the "shady characters" (e.g. transporting guns, criminal record, no job, passport from travel banned country etc), and everything had to be unpacked twice, including the bike. But i made it.

Here is a picture of the re-packed bike and camping gear on the metro.

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I basically lugged all that crap plus my backpack across the airport (no free carts 😠) and on and off of light rail and then a bus to a bike store across town. It was worth the effort because public transport is only a dollar for a ride anywhere in the Twin Cities region during September and October this year.

If anyone is wondering whether it's worth it to take your bike on the plane, here is the cost breakdown. It was $60 (Canadian) to have the bike disassembled and boxed. Oversize baggage was $50 (American) on Delta, just make sure your boxed bike is still under the 50lb limit. Then it was $100 (American) to get it reassembled on the other end. So if your bike is worth more than $200, it's probably worth the cost.

The blue bag i also had to buy - it has all my camping stuff inside, plus bike helmet, bike lock and all the other shit you're not allowed to take as cabin baggage (knife, nail clippers, and so on). It was only about $25 (Canadian), and it rolls back up into the front pocket, so i am thinking i will try stuff it in my panniers when i get the bike back since it's pretty useful to have an option to transport stuff off the bike as well as on it.

I unfortunately lost my ~$35 can of bear spray, since you cannot take it on the plane. I also lost an apple, which they found during the second luggage inspection, and was confiscated because i had removed the sticker that proved it was an apple imported from the USA in the first place 🤦‍♀️

Anyway, i'm officially in Minnesota. I'll be getting the bike back tomorrow and then just kicking it in the city for a day, restocking all my supplies (food like quick oats, tortillas, nuts, dried fruits etc) then heading on south. As for my destination? I don't really have a destination. Originally i wanted to get to Florida and switch from biking to sailing - maybe head out to the Caribbean! But if COVID is as bad along the Gulf Coast as everyone says, i might head in the other direction to the southwest and maybe Slabs before circling back to BC. Or, hey, maybe Mexico! Who knows?
 

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I thought about taking it apart myself, but the real trouble is where to put the tools. I don't want to carry a lot of heavy tools around with me that i'll only use once. That said, i like the look of that multitool which has a spanner/wrench on it too. My current multitool is just Allen keys and screw drivers, which so far hasn't been useful at all, especially because the one exact Allen key size i want to tighten isn't on the tool 🤦
 

ali

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Okay, i am continuing this tour over in First tour, US edition, heading south! I will be posting all my American adventures over there.

One last summary about traveling in Canada. I had a look through my budget and my spend, and i think it's safe to say you could tour reasonably comfortably in Canada on $20-25 a day. That allows for either a paid campsite or a big meal every day, plus a bit left over for packed food and stuff like getting a coffee as an excuse to chat to local farmers. That might sound like a lot of money, but it's less than even the cheapest basement apartments in the city and probably still a bit cheaper than rubber tramp lifestyle. You could go even cheaper if you only slept in free campsites or stealth camped and dumpster dived, but for me it's been worth it to take the "luxury" route because cycling all day is enough hard work on its own. (I even hit a motel every week or two, because i am old and soft.) This is still much cheaper than traveling the traditional way, backpacking and staying in hostels, where people often try to hit 50€ a day. I definitely recommend it to anyone who has a bit of cash up front and prefers to travel solo.
 

Colinleath

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I made it across the USA (Atlanta to Santa Barbara via Seattle and Knoxville) on $200 one year. But I pretty much always prefer to stealth camp. And I was a pretty shameless dumpster diver at the time. Plus i would carry quite a bit of food when i made a big score and would cook pretty often if i had a bunch of things that needed cooking. I may have had some EBT/food stamps also. Community bike shops are your friends. In sun valley i happened upon the studio of J biondi, who makes art from old bike parts. She had enough in decent shape i got what i needed to replace my drivetrain. So just had to pay for installation. Also some guy found me resting under a bridge and told me about a job i could do, so i made $80 that way 😂
 

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