Thursday, 5 August 2010

Humid riding towards Niagara

5th August: Guelph to Fonthill

Odometer: 132 km, Start: 9.15am, Finish: 4.45pm, Avg: 23.3 km/h,
Weather: Sunny and humid, Temp: 20-30°C (Humidex 36°C) 
Mosquito Bites: 80, Hills walked: 0
Road Conditions: Assortment of county / concession roads early on to get to Peters Corners. Then #52 south, gravel shoulder, moderate traffic to #403 intersection, then quiet. #65 (Carluke), 0.5m shoulder, good road surface, light traffic. #20 (Bismark), 0.5m shoulder, good road surface, light to moderate traffic. Some limited choice food stops. Ascent: 400m/450m.

It was another hot, humid and uncomfortable day in the saddle and towards the limit of what I can repeatedly tolerate. It took a lot of effort to stay disciplined and take in enough fluids, not only for today, but for tomorrow. I think I did OK, but it’s not much fun riding for 6-7 hours having tears of sweat running down your face continuously and being soaked to the skin all day. Certainly not something you’d want to do day in, day out. (And to think it was even hotter and more humid around here a month ago while I was crossing the Prairies…).

Dramatic clouds over storage silo

I had help this morning getting away from Guelph when I met racing cyclist Mike out on a training ride. He turned around and rode 10km with me to get me across to the correct county road for my ride south between the cities of Cambridge and Hamilton.

We talked about the Ontario road racing scene which Mike said isn’t what it used to be. It seems they’re having problems with local bureaucracy, policing and rising event costs. This is pretty much the same problems the domestic UK racing scene has as well.

Market garden farms by the roadside today

We also had a funny conversation concerning where we live. (One look at the map of this corner of Ontario betrays where the early settlers came from. The towns of London, Cambridge, Stratford, Grimsby, Chatham, Peterborough, Richmond, Newmarket are all here along with many others). Mike said that he used to live near London, ON and now lives near Cambridge, ON. That’s exactly my situation with the UK versions! What a coincidence.

My first (and I suspect only) roundabout after nearly 5,600km...

I decided to stop this evening in Fonthill, about 20km from Niagara Falls, ON basically because accommodation was bounded to be cheaper. I’d also had enough for today. When I took my soggy clothes off, my feet and hands were all wrinkly like when you’ve sat in the bath for too long!


Bryan said...

Hey Shaun, Yes, the humidy in SE Ontario and Quebec is pretty heavy duty. With regards to the sweat, why not try a headband, available from any sporting goods store (runners like 'em, mostly). I use one all the time and rarely get sweat in my eyes.


Pedal Powered Family said...

You rode right through our back yard! Enjoy your last day in Ontario...

R & A said...

Cyclists certainly help each other

Jackie said...

London ON even has the Thames River (not River Thames though) and a Covent Garden Market!

It's possible to drive from London to Niagara Falls by passing through Paris, Copenhagen, and Vienna...