Final entry for my Cross-Canada ride. July 28, 2011
28.07.2011 - 28.07.2011 22 °C
I awoke early on Thursday morning. My internal clock was still and hour or two ahead of time from Central and Mountain time. I had the bike all packed and ready to leave the Apple Tree inn in Spokane. I checked out and grabbed a bowl of cereal before hitting the road. There was a group of a half-dozen guys from Vernon who were staying there. They were in town for golf and knew Clark Inglis very well. It's a small world.
I was on the road at 6:30 a.m. It was a beautiful morning. It rode back to the Canadian border at Laurier, just south of Christina Lake. It was wonderful to feel the coolness of the morning, even though it was a blue cloudless sky. It was refreshing to see the green trees and fields along the way. Highway #395 was a superb ride. Not a bump along the way. I stopped in Colville to top-up the tank with my last fill of cheaper U.S. gas and headed to Laurier. The crossing at the border was painless. I declared a couple of bottles of wine (Layercake Merlot and Shiraz) I picked up in Spokane as well as a couple of purchases of motorcycle stuff I had purchased on-line and were being shipped to Oroville. I secured a "Goods to Follow" form that I will use when I go to Oroville next week to pick up the orders.
I stopped in Rock Creek for breakfast and headed home without incident on #33. I did see a couple of deer along the way. There were lots of bikes on the road, particularly Harleys that I suspect were heading towards Sturgis. I did meet a nice couple at the Goldpanner in Rock Creek, from Parksville.
I arrived at home at 12:30 p.m. It was great to see Rita waiting for me.
RANDOM THOUGHTS ON MY ADVENTURE
Left Kelowna on Wednesday, June 22nd
Arrived home on Thursday, July 28th
Total Distance = 16,613 kilometers
It was 2,300 kilometers shorter getting home from St. John's through the U.S. On the way home I didn't have the trip around the Gaspe or up to St. Anthony, Newfoundland.
Longest Day = From Birch Hills, Saskatchewan to Steinbach, Manitoba = 909 kilometers
Number of Different Motels/Hotels = 27
Amount of Gas consumed = $971.77
Highest price gas in Canada = $1.47/liter in Wawa, Ontario
Lowest price gas in Canada = $1.08/liter in Steinbach, Manitoba
Highest price gas in U.S. = $3.99/gallon
Lowest price gas in U.S. = $3.45 in Greenfield, Indiana
In the U.S. I was only asked twice for a "zip code" when paying at the pump. The first time I went into the station and left my drivers license. The second time, I entered the 3 numbers from my postal code followed by 3 zero's. It worked!!!!
Warmest temperature = 37C around Dayton, Ohio (plus 90% humidity - it felt way over 100F)
Coolest temperature = 7C in St. John's, Newfoundland
Strongest Winds - Hwy. #430 between St. Anthony and Deer Lake, Newfoundland
Friendliest people..... Newfoundlanders for sure with Saskatchewan a very close second. The younger generation in Newfoundland is not as friendly as the older generation. Young people in the service business in Newfoundland struck me as less than friendly. New Brunswickers struck me as being the least friendly Canadians.
Almost every hotel room in Newfoundland had at least one lamp that didn't work. Newfoundland hotels were the most expensive.
Security at the ferry terminals in Newfoundland was extremely tight. In Argentia, you had to show picture I.D. and your boarding pass whenever you were leaving the terminal coffee shop to go back to the bike.
They take about 2 hours to load the ferries in the Maritimes. They also take about an hour to unload them. Very different than in B.C.
Hotel prices are almost as mystical as gasoline prices. Almost every hotel in Canada was over $100/night. Some as high as $130/night. In the U.S. hotels were normally 20-30% cheaper than in Canada. I had a few acceptable hotels for less than $60/night. I only had one motel without a blow dryer.
The Best motel in Canada was the Country Inn @ New Glasgow, Nova Scotia. Not cheap but very clean, comfortable and customer friendly. A fantastic breakfast and congenial staff.
The worst motel in Canada was the Villa Motel in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Cheap and reasonable clean but the bed must have been over 20 years old.
In the U.S. the worst motel was the Super 8 in Grinnell, Iowa.
The best motel was the Comfort Inn in Greenfield, Indiana
Worst road award goes to New Brunswick on the Fundy Trail. I'm sure if they put the energy into paving the roads instead of patching them, they'd have better roads. I was pleasantly surprised about the quality of the highways in Newfoundland. They were generally very good.
Out of 16,000+ kilometers, I only had about 3 kilometers of gravel to travel.
I thoroughly enjoyed the 5+ weeks on the road. It was great to see Bruce Mohn and his family in Saskatchewan and I enjoyed travelling with Karl and Derek in Ontario. Ottawa and Quebec City were amazing as was the Gaspe. I'd like to go back east again and spend more time there.
I enjoyed doing the blog because being by myself, I had lots of time in the evenings to work on it. I truly appreciate the notes I got from all my friends, encouraging me to do a good job on the blog.