A different kind of Road to Nats

On August 3rd, 2013 I arrived in Vancouver.

I made it.

I made it.

It was not your typical two practices a week road to Nationals. Here is what it did involve…

Here are my final biking stats:

• Total days: 119
• Biking Days: 65
• Total Km: 7449
• Average Km/day: 114.6
• Median: 116 Km
• Longest Day: 194 Km
• Shortest Day: 17 Km

Here is the final map from Canmore to Vancouver:

The other maps can be found here

Here are my final ultimate stats spreading over 9 provinces and 22 different communities:

• Tournaments: 7
• Practices: 6
• League games: 7
• Pick up games: 4
• Clinics: 3

Here is my final budget information:

• Total money spent: $ 4235
• Average $/day: 35.59
• Number of nights paying for accommodation: 6 (total $173)

Expenses breakdown after 119 days on the road from Halifax to Vancouver.

Expenses breakdown after 119 days on the road from Halifax to Vancouver.

My final days on the road were a real grind as I tried to bike off the fatigue of the Nelson tournament without giving myself a day off. That combined with the desert like conditions of mountainous Southern BC, made for a tough final leg of the journey.

Biking through the province that proudly boasts of its beauty right on its licence plate brought back a flood of memories. Like the family vacations I went on when I was younger to ski or horse back ride. Or as I grew older, with a voracious appetite for adventure, the time I hitchhiked with a friend and arriving at our destination in the dark we unknowingly set up our tent in the middle of a road. These memories and more came back to me as I pumped my legs over the last few hundred Kms of my journey.

Even though the cycling portion has come to a close some things will end where they should have begun. There is still one last ultimate tournament left to play. Right around the time I was sleeping on the couch of Jeff, whom I had met in Chicoutimi, in Revelstoke another Jeff, who I had also met in Chicoutimi, was pulling strings over in Newfoundland to offer me a roster spot on the Mixed team representing the Atlantic region at the Canadian Ultimate Championships in Vancouver: Wreckhouse. Some things come full circle; the one province that I did not bike through will in spirit be how I end my voyage surrounded by its inhabitants.

The eve before my final day on the road I had the pleasure of receiving an email from David my companion on the very first day of my trip. In his writings he linked me back to his account of my first day of cycling where he accompanied me for the first 25 Km. In turn I began to read my own blogs from the beginning and my tales from the Maritimes as I started to make my way Westward.

I was glad that I got to look back and reflect on some of my finer and not so finer moments and the experiences I shared with so many along the way. It also reminded me that although I will disappoint many superlative hungry individuals out there; there is no ‘best moment’ or ‘favourite this’ or ‘worst that’. Along the way every moment, community, and person represented their own unique story and choosing one over the other for better or for worse would be a mistake.

Nice clouds, but I think they were hiding something even nicer

Nice clouds, but I think they were hiding something even nicer

So I arrived at my final destination, as I did with most of my journey, without incident and on an even keel. I had been cheated of great views over my last few days of my trip due to low cloud cover. The first thing I did was relieved myself from the burden of tweeting daily and then took a glorious week away from both bicycle and computer. My first meal in Vancouver was the back up rice that had quietly kept me company throughout the 1000s of Kms of my journey. It wasn’t glorious but you have to respect the back up rice.

I figure I have one last blog post left in me to give a brief account of the Canadian Ultimate Championships and to try and summarize that which is un-summarize-able; this trip as a whole.

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