This is an amazing women who’s words and adventure sit well with me.
The cold is descending upon us. It is early and the weather is unusually cold. This is a nice challenge for me. I enjoy getting my cloths organized and the feeling of warmth from the cloths o choose.
We have already had a thin layer of snow. It created a lot of ice on the road for just a short time. I saw three accidents. To say biking in winter is unsafe is a miss leading statement. However the automobile is even more dangerous. I can’t balance this risk for others. However for me I am much more comfortable on my bike.
Let’s have a conversation.
Japan presents some different challenges to me. Language and familiarity are perhaps the biggest.
I will admit that I have not had much time to even think about this trip. Some of the knibbly questions are familiar. How to get my bike to and from the airport. Telephone and Internet. Mapping.
I normally would look at postings by others. Just have not had time nor have I been focused.
That said I am relying on my experience elsewhere. I know I must be prepared for the unexpected and don’t put a lot of faith in any time schedule.
just a little bike ride at home helps me ground myself in the thought of a bigger ride
Simply said, I am going to Ride around Japan. I leave Oct 2, 2019 and return October 23 2019. A short trip but one that should prove challenging. Language, geography, and just riding hills. I am going with my Friend Will from the Netherlands. I am not sure of the route and probably won’t know it perfectly. You can follow my on my Inreach device. The link is on the first page.
I intend to learn something about the country, customs, food and people. I hope to come away from this adventure with a better understanding of how I do in Asia. This is really a challenge.
More to come
I made it to Toronto. It’s a beautiful city with lots of bike infrastructure. Riding from Exeter I got to Kritchener where I met Dave and his wife Chris. True adventurers they let me stay with them (warm showers). And we could have talked till three in the morning.
Off to Burlington which was an enjoyable back road ride. Many farms. I stayed at an overpriced holiday in. I thought they quoted me the rate in Canadian dollars. They charged the rate in US dollars. A big difference.
Yesterday was Canada day and the maple leaf was waiving proudly all along mr journey Got into a parade in port credit
I am on my way to NewFoundland. Today is day 12 and I am in Exeter Onterio. A farming community near lake Huron. I decided to stop as a big thunderstorm was approaching and I needed a break anyway. I have ridden about 800 Miles or 1,300 K. The biggest challenge thus far was navigating all the broken baths in Wisconsin. The tragedy is that many small towns are hurting because they are broken. I understand that new money is on its way.
Foutantain City Wisconsin
Well this was the first broken path. The road was under repair. Only 1000 feet (300 meters) and we had to detour up an over this very big climb 8 miles or 12 K instead of being allowed to walk our bikes through the construction. The town on the other side was dead. Killed by the construction I think.
We encountered rain, the camp was 3 miles out of town along the river. $60.00 for three people to sleep next to a train track that went all night long. This was a kind of a rip off.
Good camping at the county par\k. but a pain to get out to the glacial trail to milwaukee
Lucked out and stayed at the Cream City Hostel. We were the first guest ever. I stuck around a couple of days and helped get it ready for the grand opening. Took the early morning ferry across no hassle $106.
Rode from Muskegon to Ionia. Camped at Berthe Park. $15.00 was my price. No amenities and woke up realizing it was next to the state Prison. Probably pretty safe. I rode to Flint.
Decided to hotel it. Big city you know. Amazing bike trails. Part of the ride on Divison Street was a bit rough. Lots of glass. Yes I drank the water. Probably the safest in the world now.
I was instructed by Adventure cycling maps to cross at Marine City on a ferry. However the Ferry has been out of services for several years. So I had to figure out how to cross the bridge. Not easy to figure out except talking to locals helped. There is this cement bunker like building under the bridge where you go in an push a button to M DOT. It is spooky. The lady who answered was very nice. They take people over in a pick up truck only when the bridge is not busy, That means early morning and late evenings.
I stayed at a KOA. not recommended as it is expensive and the tent site was littered with soda bottle caps and aigrette butts. also very $$
Pinery Provincial park
Once across the bridge, I enjoyed a Timmy Hortons, beyond meat sandwich and tooled along lake Huron to Pinery. It was a lovely ride until the trail ran out. It sent me onto a very busy road with no shoulder. It make the last 25 Kilometers 15 miles of my ride very irritating. The camp site was nice however. I camped next to the sand dunes.
I made it to Exeter. I expected to encounter a lot of traffic. but I found a route that was fantastic. Through farm land. The problem I had was figuring out where to stay. It is a national holiday and everything is booked. Not good. So I am doing my laundry. When in doubt, wash
That’s it for now Tom
I will be riding from Minneapolis to Newfoundland this summer (2019) I am leaving June 16th. my route will take me to Milwaukee Wisconsin, ferry across lake Michigan and then a trip from Wolf Lake to Marine City Michigan. I will take the northern great lakes route to Toronto, then Montreal, Quebec, and then on over to Halifax. I will go across the bridge from Nova Scotia to Prince Edward Island where I intend to Ride the confederation trail. From there I’ll get back to Sydney NS and hop a ferry to St. John’s NF. I have not decided what I will do after that. I want to keep traveling, but knowing how things in this world work, I should come home.
Please feel free to track me on at https://share.garmin.com/ThomasLais It is always nice to hear from you while I am on the trail. Shoot me an E mail or post to FB.
My life has been changed on a bicycle. I am happy, I am energized, I am instructional, and we are a community. I visited Norway. I met Dag in Africa. He and his wife Vibeke Brattli invited me and others to their cabin in Norway. We traveled by bike around Sanje Island. I returned in the winter as their guest to open what is now called Arctic Camp Brattli. It was amazing. It was also important to experience a part of the world I had Never visited. Rugged, steeped in history, and many connections with my home state Minnesota.
Me on the sea in Oulu Finland
I wonder if the Egyptians had to do an RFP or build on a Return on Investment before opening a Pyramid. I suspect someone thought it was worthwhile. What was their measure and how did it turn out? Roll forward a couple thousand of years and we see these structures still around and making someone(tourist guides) some money. Carnegie built libraries, and others built universities or Stadiums. Things that impacted our community and world.
It seems to me that it is possible to build something else that will survive generations and inspire people of the future. We have built great roads, like the Romans. I wonder if we can build something that inspire people to be fit, save their planet, and make their bank a little more happy?
How about a people trail. One that truly inspires the user to keep on using it. One where people come together to work, talk, educate, pray, argue, and be happy. What if our ride to work was inspiring and motivating. What if our ride to school organized our thoughts and built our self reliance. What if we used our ride to work to learn.
What would that people trail look like? Would it have trees, would the surface be smooth or rough? Would there be inspiring art work? Would there be places to sit, eat, and talk? Would there be room for children and pets? Would it be a good place in all weather?
I just want to start a conversation.
I think I heard this quote along my journey. I don’t know who it belongs to so I apologize. However I believe it to be a universal truth.
Upon the end of any adventure one returns, eats, rests, celebrates and plans the next journey.
So what have I got cooking? In 2019 I am planning on riding from Minneapolis to St. John’s NF. about 2,800 Miles or 4,500 Kilometers. I hope to do it in two months. Why so long? Because I want to stop and enjoy some of the scenery. I hope to go to Milwaukee, ferry across to Michigan and proceed up through Toronto, Quebec City, Montreal and points east All before it gets too cold.
In 2020 I have signed up for short 2,800 Kilometer ride in Mongolia. I am hoping that I can squeeze in some bigger ride but all that takes money and time. I have to work on both of them.
I hope to visit some friends along the way. Who knows maybe a few people will also ride with me. I am not fast, just happy when I ride.