June 23, 1955. It's my birthday today and I got sunny skies, the smell of fresh cut hay and wildflowers, a tailwind and to see tall grasses blowing in the wind like green waves as presents. I also got a headwind as I was heading uphill, double whammy, on my way to Osoyoos. I got on the road by 8, which seems to be my usual start time, after having breakfast and packing up. Beautiful morning between Hedley and Keremeos. I stopped at the Visitor Information Centre there for well over an hour to charge my phone batteries and catch up on the blog. I made a couple of phone calls and got back peddling just after 11. Beautiful ride following the Similkameen River. The water is very high in all rivers and streams right now as there is a late runoff. I got to Osoyoos and found out the Provincial Park is full. It's a bit of a ride out there. So I came back into town and went along Lakeshore Drive and found the Cabana RV park. I've got a patch of grass for an extra comfortable place for the tent, a picnic table, showers at $1.00 for 6 1/2 minutes and free WiFi. Life is good on the road. I had taken a couple of pictures today but they have disappeared so no photos of the day. Tomorrow I'll be peddling up Anarchist Summit. I don't know but I think it's going to be an all day climb. I'll remember to take some photos but when I get to a campground there probably won't be any cell service so the next blog update will be later. Stay tuned.
What a difference from yesterday! The hills were managable.I got to Sunday Summit by almost noon and I felt good. I stopped for groceries in Princeton and continued on to Stemwinder Provincial Park near Hedley. Hedley being a former gold mining town. It's been nice seeing the wild flowers coming out and the air is so much nicer than the manure covered farms in the Fraser Valley. Quite a few driver's have been honking and waving to me which is very encouraging. One fellow stopped to talk to me on Sunday Summit and we chatted about bikes and touring. I woke up to a 4 degree frost covered saddle this morning and had to scrape it off. I stopped to take this picture of Big Don who happens to have a meat shop beside the park. I'm at the Keremeos info centre updating this and charging my batteries. The cell phone's too.
I'm catching on emails and this blog as each night I've been without cell service. This was one very tough day. Of the 74 km I think 64 were uphill. I spent most of the day in the 3 lowest gears. Funny though, at the store outside the park the radio was playing ACDC's "Highway to Hell" which seemed appropriate. Highlights of the day were seeing a black bear on the side of the road. Just keep riding I said to myself. I've included photos of the Hope slide which happened in 1965. The sign for Allison Pass. That's a lot of elevation gain from sea level. Me camping.