On the road again

The week off was fairly uneventful. Lots of chores and running around to do, coupled with me feeling pretty terrible for a couple of days lead to, well, something. By the end of the week, Hillary was doing much better and we were ready to go.

Sort of.

Got up Saturday morning to a flat tire on both the road bike and the cross bike. Great. I broke the tire levers switching the road bike tire. Before the day was out, I'd have gone through three more tubes. Time to get more I am thinking.

From Ottawa, our route was to cross into Quebec and take the 148 until somewhere before Montreal and pass north of the city. Mom's only caveat prior to setting out on this trip was that she would not drive in Montreal. This was fair as far as we were concerned. After all, north of Montreal should be pretty scenic right?

Well, turns out, if you stay south of the hills, Quebec isn't the greatest province for riding, at least thus far. The three hundred or so km after we got outside of Ottawa rivaled the flattest roads on the prairies. Which wasn't bad I suppose. We had a nice tailwind for three of those days, which lead to lots of fast cruising. Hillary seems to be stronger after the rest as well, so we're going faster even when the winds die.

It's also much more civilized as well. For the first four thousand or so kilometres of the trip, we'd get waves from truckers and random people waving at us. For the most part, this was due to where we were. Virtually anywhere on the roads we've been on, up until midway through Ontario, the only cyclists on the road were the ones who were touring in one form or another. Now that we're in much more civilized, much more populous regions, we see people out for day rides all the time.

This 'much more civilized' is also the reason I haven't really taken any pictures for a few days. We haven't really been in the wild yet and I don't really know when we'll hit it again.

So we're in Quebec City now. Seemed like a good place for a day off, which was actually probably a mistake, I really should have gone on a couple of rides around the city, there are some awesome roads and steep little climbs all over. Ah well, I will need to find some cyclosportif ride in the city and do that one day. Bodes well for the next few days of riding. Hills are slower, but much more fun.

As for the roads, the highways aren't as bad as Manitoba, the towns are worse. Much worse. Catastrophic was a word that was used in some random small town that we hit.

We also had our first official wrong turn of the trip a couple of days ago. We were riding along the 158 and the directions for the day were basically: Ride the 158 until it ends, then take the 138. Turns out the 158 is very poorly signed in a few places and we lost it. About 10km later, we realized the highway signs were showing the wrong numbers and that set off the alarm bells. Fortunately we were going only about 45 degrees off the direction we should have been going on and ended up only adding about 10km to the day's ride.

We're back on the road tomorrow barring anything weird happening. Happy Canada Day if I'm not back before then.