Day 3: Saltery Bay – Rathtrevor Beach
Distance: 74.83 miles
Average Speed: 11.9
Before I left for this trip, I knew day three would be a crux of the route. 74 miles with a 1.25 hour ferry crossing to make too. It’s also the transition from North to South as I start heading South from Comox on Vancouver Island. After such a tough day yesterday where I was soaked all day, I wasn’t feeling at all optimistic when I went to sleep last night. It was either wake early, make the 8:05 ferry or admit defeat early in the trip and opt for the one at 11:50. I woke early, packing away my sodden possessions, and hit the road at 6:30, giving me just an hour and a half to cycle 19 miles. As soon as I hit a major climb straight out of the campsite and found I had a significant headwind I thought I was probably doomed, especially as I had shown little cycling form so far. However, 1 hour 25 and 19 miles later I rolled elated and exhausted into Powell River ferry terminal.
On the ferry, I spoke to a guy from Edmonton called Alex, he was on his way to a yoga retreat on Salt Spring Island and was amazed to hear I’d arrived here from Vancouver by bike in two days!
Setting off after the ferry, the pressure lifted and the first 15-20 miles flew by. The scenery was nice on the few occasions that the road came out of the trees and joined the coastline, though even the trees looked better in the bright sunshine.
I stopped for lunch in the small hamlet of Bowser at around 52 miles, then pedalled on into the ever strengthening sunshine. I also found the headwind that I thought I’d lost was back. I’d forgotten the first rule of cycling. You always have a headwind, no matter which direction you’re travelling. The last 20 miles were really tough and I was relieved to reach Rathtrevor Beach campsite at 5 o’clock after a loooong day!