Thursday, July 8, 2010

Day 38 – Thursday July 8 - Saint-Leonard to Woodstock (151 km)

“The Stronger Wind, The Stronger Trees”
I slept through my 4:30am alarm this morning, waking up on my own at the usual 5:00 (whew!). Turned out to be just as well as the sun wasn’t even up yet (we’re Just into the Atlantic Time zone... so it’s like 3:30am at home). Still managed to be on the road by 6am though, and knocked off some mileage before the heat got tooo bad. Am I ever glad I planned for shorter days on this last leg of the trip! After riding through Grand Falls (Grand-Sault), we headed south on Hwy 105, which made for an awesome ride! It goes through a rural area, and is a secondary highway, so there was literally only about 1 car every 5 minutes or so. The road was also pretty narrow, and surrounded by trees on both sides, which meant shade! It felt SO much cooler than yesterday, and even the wind (a headwind, of course) felt cool. Highway 105 is part of the “River Valley Drive”, a designated scenic route, and it certainly lived up to its reputation (and the signs for it look like they’re straight out of Dr. Seuss!). Dad had to pick up some supplies in Grand Falls, so he met up with me again around the 90km mark. In Hartland, we made a short detour – 1,282 feet one-way to be exact – across the world’s longest covered bridge! Very cool! We had lunch at a picnic table in the shade by the river (so picturesque). After lunch we weren’t far from our campsite, so Dad went for a 10km spin on his bike before catching up with me with the car. Our campsite tonight is delightfully shaded, and now that I’m off my bike the hefty wind is greatly appreciated! Sometimes when I’m riding into a headwind, a verse from one of my favourite poems (by Douglas Malloch) gets stuck in my head, on repeat, in time with the cadence of my pedaling. It goes like this:

“The tree that never had to fight,
For sun and sky and air and light,
But stood out in the open plain,
And always had its share of rain,
Never became a forest king,
But lived, and died, a scrubby thing.
Good timber does not grow with ease;
The stronger wind,
The stronger trees.”

I tuck my head down. And I ride.


  1. The RIGHTEOUS will flourish like PALM trees; they will grow like the CEDARS of Lebanon. They are like TREES planted in the house of the Lord, that flourish in the Temple of our God, that still bear fruit in old age and are always green and strong. Psalm 92.12-14
    So proud of you,
    Love, Mom

    You are amazing.