Thursday, June 20, 2013

Mile Zero

What an amazing couple of days. We started out around 9:30 AM from the dorm at UBC. I think there were about 14 of us. The group keeps growing so I can't even remember - even back to yesterday.

Bud (the owner of Tour du Canada) led us out of Vancouver which was good - even though we had a very detailed route of how to get to the ferry, Bud has done that route numerous times and so it was easy for us to follow him and know that we were not going to get lost. We haven't figured out yet who is good with maps and who is not!

There is a tunnel which we are NOT allowed to ride our bikes through so we had to take the bike shuttle.

Waiting for the shuttle

The shuttle could only take 8 bikes at a time, so the driver had to make two trips. Once we were on the other side, then it was a "quick" 15 KM to ferry.

The ferry ride was uneventful and I sat outside for a good part of the trip. I have taken that ferry numerous times so no big deal for me. I do have to say that as a cyclist  we do get on the ferry first and is a lot of fun to ride through the car deck with NOTHING in the way.

Michel unlocking his bike on the ferry. That is my bike beside him

Waiting to get off the ferry
Here is the door just starting to open as we approach the ferry dock

Of course - first on, first off so we are first off the ferry as well. And then rode some amazing trails to get into Victoria.

Me , Danny and Neil at a marker for the Lochside Trail

I met up with my aunt whom I haven't seen in a LONG LONG time - NOTE TO SELF - I MUSTget  out next year so I can spend more time with her. We had a great time catching up on family news and gossip - well no gossip of course. We took pictures, but I promised her that I would not post them!!!!!

Then back to the Hostel in downtown Victoria to try and catch some sleep. We were sleeping in a dorm room with 15 beds. Thankfully they were NOT all full and we managed to get bottom bunks. Yeah!!!!   I think I am too old to sleep in a top bunk anyway!

How is this for bike parking. This is in the hostel. I want it in my garage!!!!!

After a bit of a fitful sleep, we were up early and on our way to MILE ZERO. This is the picture that I first posted to Facebook a number of months ago when I first revealed what I was going to do with my summer. This is the spot where Terry Fox was supposed to finish his Marathon of Hope.
Me at Mile Zero. This is where Terry Fox was supposed to finish his Marathon of Hope. A statue of him is just behind this marker

Our group so far - there were 14 of us. We also had two TdC vets with us - Len and John. We had great fun riding with them and getting their stories!!!!!

After the requisite picture taking - we were OFF!!!!   On an adventure of a life time. Well - this isn't technically part of the trip - not everyone was there, but hey - to us - it was very symbolic. We then dipped our wheels in the ocean and then it was time to get back to Vancouver.

Dipping the wheels in the ocean!!!

As we made our way around the scenic route of Victoria, we managed to get seperated. There was a group of eight and a group of seven. I know - we picked up two more people at Mile Zero. Our group was in the lead and we made it to the ferry and the other group did not. We headed to the tunnel shuttle and as we were leaving to go through the tunnel - the other group caught up to us. We waited for them on the other side and once again - we were all together. I am sure we were quite a sight - all 16 of us - or 15 or however many we were at that time.

Back to the dorm and I think everyone was happy to be back. While the distance of both days wasn't long - 80 K one day and about 90 K today, it was a LONG day with all the waiting for the ferry and the shuttle. And let's just say that we ran into some pretty wild traffic on the way here. We had construction, BIG trucks passing within a couple of feet and rush hour traffic. Oh yes - it was EXCITING. I hate going through narrow spaces and there were a couple of times when we went through the construction zone where there wasn't a lot of extra room between the pylons and the traffic. I am surprised that we actually fit in those spaces.

Back at the dorm, we got to meet more of the group, but I think there are still a few that I haven't met.

My gut feel is that we have an amazing group of people and everyone is so POSITIVE and EXCITED and APPREHENISVE about the trip - I think we will have loads of fun.

There are also a number of francophones on the trip so I am getting LOTS of practise with my French. I love it!!!!!

We are just relaxing now and I shall be going to bed soon.

I got the pictures all edited and didn't even have to dig deep in my mind to make that happen, however, now I can't seem to get them to load. So bear with me while I figure that out. I don't seem to have a good internet connection and that could be the reason that I can't load them.

As you can see - I managed to get the pictures loaded. Matter of fact - I loaded them TWICE. GRRRRRRRRR   Still working out the technology, but I think I have it now. a bit hard and going to get worse as the number of pictures accumulate, but I think I got it. If I run out of storage room on the net - well I revert to my usual mantra - JUST THROW MONEY AT IT and buy more storage!!!!!!!!!!

On that note - I am out of here.

Have a good day!!!!!!!!!!!!


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