The landscape around Kamloops resembles the scenery one knows from the good old western movies. In this region it rains only very rarely and it’s a desert-like (semi-aride) climate. Somewhere between Kamloops and Savona – my next stopover – I actually pass the Ponderosa Road. But I miss to shoot a photo. Shortly before Savona I make a short break after a small hill which I have just climbed. Roughly 200m from me I discover an animal which appears to be a coyote. He stares at me for about 30 seconds, but finally clears the road.
Savona is a cozy little village located at the Kamloops Lake. I stay with Gerry and Detty, who give me a shelter for one night. Once again I am able to enjoy a warm shower and, as almost common at Canadian wamr showers, they also offer a nice dinner with salmon that Gerry caught himself.
The next morning I start later than originally planned, as we have interesting discussions during and after breakfast. It’s a long stage I’ve planned for that day. I want to make it to Fountain Valley – that’s more than 100km. After a stop at the Farmers Market in Horstings, where I eat a sandwich, soup and a cinnamon (Cinamon Bun) to gain power for the remaining 60km. When looking at the profile of todays stage, I realize more and more that I have to get on my way to get there before sunset. I’m only stoping from time to time to eat my trail mix or a cereal bar. And in fact I reach my destination with the last glimpse of daylight. I put up my tent and cook my pasta again, which I can refine with some of the salmon from yesterday which I got from Gerry and Detty. A long day is coming to an end.
Before I pack my bike the next morning I have a FaceTime call with my sister’s family. It is nice to see the two little nephews again and I have the feeling that they are also enjoy seeing their uncle face to face again. I can hardly end the call with the two, but I have a road to drive. And the present day is even more challenging than the previous one. After a short downhill part, it is almost exclusively uphill for roughly 60km. At the end of the day, I will have climbed a total difference of more than 1800m. That’s above my average road bike stages, where I don’t carry extra 35kg of weight. I’m getting doubts again whether I will reach my destination in time today. At 6pm I finally reach the highest point of today’s stage. From now on it goes downhill for 13km with up to 15% gradient. It is a hell of a ride which demands full concentration. But at the same time it’s also a big rewarded for the previous enduring climb. It was definitely fun.
After I reached the valley I still have to pedal for 20km to reach my warm shower for today. I’m staying with Pam and Scott who own a little farm just outside of Pemberton where they grow organic vegetables. It’s a pretty long road and I check for every driveway I pass for the address. In one of the driveways before I reach the actual farm I look into the eyes of a big black bear. He standing there as if he is guarding the gate. For a short moment I think of pulling out my camera and capture that scene. But I quickly decide that this might not be the smartest idea and continue pedaling. Finally I’m happy when I reach the farm, where a warm shower and a hot meal are already waiting for me again. I love the hospitality of the Canadian people.