All I can say is that the yellow head highway from Russell to Minnedosa is one long lonely and rough stretch. The road was wide but the paved shoulders in most of the route was unrideable so it forced us to use the road which really was not much better. There was very little in the way of stores or towns on the highway and the stores and shops that were advertised on the road were too far out of the way to go to. It was hard on the bikes and your body felt like it was on a vibrator all the time you rode. There was on the other hand lots of wildlife, birds, ducks, and small rodents. Road signs also indicated that there is a presence of larger animals as well. None of which ever decided to make their presence known but when we reached Minnedosa there were reports of a bear roaming the the streets.
The campground that we stayed at was on a man made lake. There was a large dam on the way to the campground an a large lake on the other side. A nice way to end a bone jarring ride.
Buffalo at Minnedosa
Stats distance: 141.72 Time 6:50:00. Average speed. 20.74
Day 23 Minnedosa to Portage La Prairie
Well they told us when we started that the prevailing wind was from the west. The ones that start a cross country trip in the east are smiling right now. After yesterday,s rough roads and lots of people having equipment trouble ( a long rough ride) down the yellow head highway. The road today was all downhill and smooth but… the wind picked up from the north east changing to the east in the afternoon. It was a hard go. It's a good thing I like coffee because the delay to get one on the way was enough that I missed the rain the others slogged through.
The scenery was much the same as what we had been travelling through all week. The only difference was that there is less conola than before and a lot more variety wheat, corn , soybeans, and other started appearing. Because of the wet conditions we did not take a lot of photos, just concentrated on biking.
long lonely stretches
Tonight we heard from some riders and support staff that are leaving in Winnipeg. Every week end we say goodbye to some who have ridden or supported us over the past weeks. It is difficult especially if you have connected on some level. Sunday will see new faces on the tour. We have app. 53 riders that go the whole way and numerous support that are with us for the whole trip as well. Others join us as time for them permits.
Stats distance 134.69 time 7:17:16 average speed e18.48
As you can see a very windy day
Day 24 Portage La Prairie to Winnipeg
Well the wind shifted in our favour after a thunderstorm last night. So the ride into Winnipeg was fast with the wind behind us. We got to Winnipeg in record time. But all the plans to look around at the new cultural centre went straight out the window when it started taking pour. So we have a perfect trifecta rough roads one day, a strong easterly wind the next right into us, then rain the third. I hope it all out of the system and we have a peaceful week and I know that I deserve no sympathy because I signed up for this.
Coming into Winnipeg was great as we got closer there were of course there were more and more houses. The route took us along the Assiniboine river through parkland and gardens. As we followed the river the homes along this tree lined boulevard are spectacular. Later the trail turned in to more parkland and we came to where the Assiniboine and Red rivers meet. We went up to the new human rights museum, a real nice piece of architecture. About that time the skies opened up and we spent the next hour huddled under an alcove. The storm settled down but a lot of the pavement markings (an arrow with a c) our guide was wash ed out and I became mislocated I hate t use the term lost but a phone call helped put me back on track.
On Saturday night we were treated to dinner by the local native band with a meal of beef and moose stew and bannock. This also included a cleansing ceremony and a traditional dance demonstration. A lot of the culture and traditions were explained. Since we started our trip, every evening we would hear which traditional native land we were passing through and some background history. We are in Ojibway Chippewa and Meti territory which stretches all the way back to south western Ontario.
Distance. Time. Average speed.
I will post this as is and sort out the order later. I really struggled this week but we experienced great sights and wonderful landscapes.