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  • Day14

    Chasing The Sun

    September 13, 2016 in the United States ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    As I leave Sturgeon Bay Provincial Park I can see the sun start to rise in my mirrors. It is a little chilly out so I'm excited to feel the warmth of the sun when it's fully up. As I continue to ride, I realize that warm morning sun never arrived. I know I'm traveling west, but not fast enough to make time slow that much. I realize some clouds have rolled in and there probably won't be any sun this morning. Oh well, I kept riding into the horizon looking forward to possibly a break in the clouds, but the skies only got darker. It's almost time for a break and it's close to 11.

    Funny thing about roads in this part of Canada is that there are still billboards everywhere. Kind of like the ones you'd see for Watercountry in NH, but the signs are for KFC or other equivalent restaurants, and a few other attractions. They also start about 100km away so that the anticipation builds. I see one for a Tim Hortons. I then see clouds up ahead that are definitely holding a bunch of water, so that Tim Hortons sounds pretty good in the next 15km. The rain is now imminent, and the Tim Hortons is only 3km ahead. It begins to rain, and the Tim Hortons is just around the corner!!! It starts to rain harder and I see the Tim Hortons and park, put the cover on and go inside. Phew, I order a breakfast sandwich and a donut. If it's going to be cold and wet out, I might as well consume some calories so I can try and stay warm.

    Inside, I check the weather and investigate possible destinations. I think about a hotel and watching a movie in Sault Ste Marie, or going to a campsite several hours further away in Michigan. I keep checking the weather. Looks like it will be cloudy for the rest of the day, but not rainy. I decided to man up and ride all day, hopefully drying off from conduction in the air rather than the highly preferred radiation from the sun.

    Soon I am across the border and back in the states. I cross a very large bridge which shows me views of lake Superior to my right, and Huron to my left. While I am drying off, I'm also losing heat. While I could put more clothes on, I decided that getting some hot soup and a nice salad (fresh vegetables situation isn't great on the road) was a better idea. Lunch next to the entrance of some huge locks was great. It also felt good to be back in the US. Some of the differences in the scenery are subtle like the types of billboards, and others are obvious like the units on speed limit signs, then there's the whole border crossing thing.

    As I approach my campsite for the night, I am ready to get off the bike. Sitting in one position all day does not do wonders to your back. The sun does start to come out though so my spirit was definitely lifted. I am now in Hiawatha National Forest and the roads are numbered. I also realize that the charge on my phone has been steadily dropping all day. I check the roads and turns I have to make in case my phone dies. My phone shut off shortly after. I am two roads away. My next road is 33Rd. However when I get to the mileage of where my turn is, the street sign does not read 33Rd! It starts with a 4XX XX. I turn my phone back on as it now had a 4% charge. I quickly check and I am in fact at 33Rd. I look at the road sign again and there is a prefix before the 33, it reads 442 33Rd. The road is dirt and slightly damp from the earlier rain. I test it out and the bike handles just as well if not better than it did on Karl and Mary's road a few days prior. I surge ahead and I finally come to the campsite.

    The sun is still up! About 420 miles on the day and it was all in the relative light of the day. Today as I chased the sun out of the clouds and rain, I also came as close to catching it as I've ever come,... in a vehicle I am operating (not a plane or a train).

    The only picture I was inspired to take when my phone still had a charge and it wasn't raining is of the bridge at the border.
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