It was -1 C when I awoke. Unseasonably cold. I was anxious to get on the bike but decided to wait until mid-day when 14 C was forecast.
I headed out at 1 pm planning to complete 75 km including parts of the Brechin and Beaverton Loops. My plans quickly changed. Although it was sunny and warmer, it was windy. Gusty winds strong enough to stop the bike as if hitting a stone wall. I have never experienced anything like it. I persevered for 40 km but, for the first time in over 2 weeks, the wind got to me. I cut my ride short, dropped on the bars, changed into one of my lowest gears and plodded along.
There were some sections protected by trees and hills where I could maintain a 25-30 kph pace but for 65% of the ride, I was battling a strong, gusty headwind. I must admit, it got me down. The first time this trip. I was feeling strong, well rested and keen to ride. After 45 minutes into a headwind my enthusiasm waned. It was not only windy but cold as well. I don’t have all the warm weather gear I need to enjoy this type of cycling. I did bring my ear band and wore it today. Ear band. Booties. Base layer. Wool socks. I put on all the clothing I have.
The cottage is located on the Trent-Severn Waterway, a National Historic Site of Canada. It is a 386 km recreational waterway joining The Bay of Quinte on the east and Georgian Bay on the west by linking the Kawartha Lakes with over 40 locks and several canals. The waterway is open from mid-May to mid-October each year and takes approximated 7-10 days to travel depending the size of boat and weather conditions.
I have never travelled the entire waterway. I would like to but, when I visit the cottage, I get settled. I don’t want to travel far. No farther than I can bike. Perhaps if I spent more time here, an entire summer, I would make an effort to travel east at least for several days. Each of the locks have washroom facilities and permit camping. Many of the boaters sleep on board but just as many travel with smaller boats and camp at the locks.
Once again, I digress. When I was battling the wind, my mind wandered to thoughts of the Trent-Severn Waterway and what it has meant to me over the years. I spent summers here from the time I was 7 and enjoyed holidays here ever since. I don’t get here as frequently as I would like but this trip has made me question how I can ever sell it.