Friday, June 26, 2009

Goose Tour Day 6: Castlegar to Grand Forks

Unofficial Rest Day

Though I didn't log many miles today, at least I accomplished something, as Steve pointed out. He and I had planned to ride together today, a day of climbing for 24 or so miles up to Paulson Summit. We turned out of the parking lot, went under the highway, then up an on-ramp with an 8% grade to the Highway and the start of the climb, just like that. I guess I was get on with it and have it be over sooner or something. I dropped Steve. And I wondered to myself how we were going to ride together when he was way the hell behind me. So much for that! And there was a fair amount of traffic on the road so if we did ride together, talking (which is what makes a climb go by faster) would be nearly impossible.

Then there were the trees, lots of them; the scenery was all trees.

Mostly live evergreens but some stumps and some logged trees and some old tires by the side of the road. No one to talk to and nothing to look at. Just then, the van came by and I think Doug was driving it. I waved, he waved. I waved more, he waved more. More waving ensued, until he figured out I wasn't just being super friendly-perky on this boring climb with repetitive scenery and old tires and he pulled over. Somehow, pie emerged from the back of the van and, by the time HB and Marie rolled up, it was clear that I was way more interested in eating pie than I was in climbing for a couple more hours. At least I shared, the pie I mean.

My role for the rest of the day was as photographer which made me plenty happy. It was my chance to photo the fronts of my friends, rather than the butt shots I had been taking. As we approached Grand Forks, I got out of the van and got paceline shots of nearly half the group. That evening, several people showed their photo slideshows and I was lucky to be able to show mine on Chris' computer. HB, being the prepared guy he is, had his orchestrated to music.

For dinner, the motel proprietors shuttled us to a restaurant on the edge of town that had a big room for all of us and lots of variety on the menu. From the upstairs window, we watched deer graze while we waited for our food. On the way back, we were told about the area Doukhobors, a religious sect of Russian immigrants. They were most noted for their form of protest: disrobing in public and I wondered if my family tree intersected theirs.

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