Cycling – Across Canada Style

Getting out of Winnipeg in early August, I began feeling some time constraints. My brother’s wedding in Vancouver was coming up on the 24th. This was one of the reasons I’d gone East-West, unlike most people because they’re afraid of a bit of wind. Long, flat story short, I did the 1500+ km from Winnipeg to Edson Alberta, just east of Edmonton, in 8 days, re-aggravating my knee. Having left the bike at a friend’s place I hitch-hiked home in time for cake and returned a week later to finish the trip. From there it was all I could do to maintain a hundred km a day. Anything more would have turned an aggravated knee into a blown-out mess. The big town behind the Rockies was Prince George and 700km later I hit the Ocean at Prince Rupert and jumped a ferry to Haida Gwaii where I did the final sprint to the Yellowhead Highway Mile Zero at the northern end of Graham Island. On a rainy day in mid-Sept I flew out of Masset – just threw the bike on the plane, no hassle since the airport there is so small, and arrived in Vancouver two hours later – the real end of my trip.

People sometimes ask me what profound ideas I have about Canada and cycling after my epic trip. Usually I just have two things to say: Canada is huge- much bigger than most people think – after all the zig-zags the total distance biked came out to 8924Km. My advice to long-distance cyclists is this; pack light. All along the trip I came across fellow riders under mountains of gear – front and back panniers and large bundles on top their back racks, not to mention elaborate handle bar panniers. If it wont kill you to miss it, don’t bring it. The experience lies in the trip, not the the gear.

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  • Theo

    Max, love the tale and how it was told (and hearing about it bit-by-bit while in the making), but I have to laughingly note that our wedding was on the 21st, not the 24th… :)

  • Tim

    Nice. I love the pic at the Welcome to British Columbia sign. BC is one of my favorite places on the planet.

  • Clive Chapman

    Oh and I forgot say, the “travel light” thing, that’s a Squaddie talking if ever I’ve heard one! Very true too.

  • Clive Chapman

    That’s very cool, I’d love to do something like that!