We have to sit out most of the morning in Virden as heavy thunderstorms come through. They are strong enough to cause power outages in our hotel.
I finally get on the road, again approaching noon, and for the first time ride on Highway 1, the Trans Canada. This is the infamous stretch where two cross country cyclists were killed and two of their children injured in 2008. The accident area is marked with a bicycle painted white. More importantly, the road has been drastically improved with wide shoulders and a rumble strip. There were no paved shoulders when the accident occurred. I couldn’t bring myself to photograph the bicycle shrine on the side of the road. Instead I pedaled carefully and purposefully to Griswald where I take the much smaller, Route 21, south to Deloraine.
There is evidence everywhere of road damage from the heavy spring rains. It actually works to my advantage as trucks are prohibited until all the repairs are done. The water is nearly breaching the road in many places.
After Griswald, I head south and curiously face a strong southerly headwind. Not a great addition to a hot and humid day. The people of Griswald have a sense of humour and have constructed a mini grain elevator and a jail next to it.
I put my head down avoiding the sun and the wind until I can find shade for a late lunch break. We find one farm with a shady front lawn and ask permission to have a picnic. Permission granted. Just before we leave, a member of the family comes out to offer us a
Turns out that although we are over 40 km from Deloraine this woman knows the Pearson College alumni family we will be visiting there. All farm families seem connected in a wide geographical area here.
There are very few gluten free landscapes here in Manitoba.
By early evening, out of water, I make it to the town of Deloraine.
Even though it is a town of just 1,000 people, it has sent a handful of students to Pearson College, Including
Hanna MacKinnon, Pearson College, Year 27 and her brother, Laughlin, Pearson College Year 38.
After a long day on the road, we enjoy a wonderful meal with the family.
Stats – for Monday 2 July 2012
Distance: 112 km
Time on Bike: 4 hrs 56 min
Average Speed: 22.7 km/ hr
Distance to Date: 3,531 km