Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Labrador, Nfld, Maritimes trip report

I returned to Ottawa yesterday, shortly after 10pm. Christian and I completed a whirlwind circuit of the North Coast of Quebec, Labrador, the Newfoundland's Great Northern Peninsula and two of the three Maritime provinces. The total distance was 5060 kms. (Chris is still in Moncton and will return to Ottawa on Wednesday.) No major incidents to report. The bikes ran great. The scenery was as beautiful as I remembered. And the road and schedule were a great challenge. Chris and I were very compatible riders and had a great time racing through the wilderness and sharing several nice meals.

Here is the schedule:
- Jul 1: Ottawa to Labrador City. 1450kms. 17.5 hours riding time.
- Jul 2: Labrador City to L'Anse au Clair, NL. 1140kms. 17 hours riding time.
- Jul 3: L'Anse au Clair, NL to Port-aux-Basques, NL. 620kms. 7 hours riding time.
- Jul 4: North Sydney, NS to Ottawa, ON. 1697kms. 16 hours riding time.

It was a quick ride, so quick that I only took one photo. Here is Christian with the bikes at the mine reservoir near Fermont, Quebec.

Although there isn't much photographic evidence, I did come away with a ton of memories...
- Best day of riding: the ride from Lab City to near Blanc Sablon was epic.
- Most idiotic moment: running out of gas for the second time on the first day (I'm still getting to know the Strom's range under different conditions).
- Best meal: bowl of split pea soup, can of Guinness and bag of salt & vinegar chips on the ferry from Port-aux-Basques.
- Most challenging segment of riding: toss up between the Fire Lake road in dusk and the road down to Red Bay in fog, rain and complete darkness. Also wherever they were fixing the road by adding gravel on top required focused attention.
- Most scenic stretch: riding through Gros Morne and the rest of the Great Northern Peninsula.
- Best timing: rolling into Lab City as the Canada Day fireworks were going off.
- Amount of power being generated by Churchill Falls as we rolled passed: 2816 megawatts.

Finally, for the real bike nerds here are my stats for Day 4 of riding. It was a very fast and long iron butt.
- Start point: North Sydney, NS at 6:01am (EDT)
- End point: Ottawa, ON at 10:02am (EDT)
- Total time: 16 hours and one minute
- Number of gas/food stops: 5 (New Glasgow, NS; Partridge Valley, NB; Perth-Andover, NB; La Pocatière, QC; Ste-Hyacinthe, QC)
- Total distance: 1697kms
- Avg speed (including stopped time): 106km/h
- Avg moving speed (not including stopped time): 115km/h

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