To White River

White River is where Winnie the Pooh is from! I just needed to let that be known. It’s awesome and it’s information that should be shared.
Because we were camped beside a warm lake last night, everything was soaked with dew and condensation this morning. I don’t think my tent has ever been packed up wetter, including when it had rained for 4 weeks. It’ll survive. I think. It was quite nice waking up and getting to see the steam rise off of the lake.
Bryan, Yasse and I were packed up quite early this morning so we went to get coffee and then trekked up the several kilometre long hill to get out of Marathon and back onto the highway. There’s nothing quite like a hill climb to get your blood pumping in the morning (note: this is sarcasm. It’s not actually fun).
The weather was pleasant, so I really can’t complain about anything. I was taking my time and the guys were riding faster, so I quickly fell behind. This whole trip has really been a piece of humble pie for me, because I realized that I am not the fastest, or the best prepared, or the most knowledgable etc. But I’ve learned that this is my trip and I will make it what I want and get out of it what I put in. Even if it takes me to mid September, I will finish this journey. I look at it like a marathon (in a lot of ways) – I will not finish first by I will be happy to have finished.
A few kilometres in we met Matt and Pauly. They are cycling from Toronto to Vancouver. All tour cyclists hear about other tour cyclists, so I recognized Pauly from what I had heard of the small guitar he was carrying with him. In the same way, Yasse had heard about me and my phone problems from the girls he had camped with the night before. Again, small world.
I feel like all I’ve done in the last couple of days is pee in the bush. It’s been so hot and humid, and the bathrooms are so far apart, that I just can’t help it. I’m ok with it, but it’s making for some uncomfortably placed mosquito bites.
Yasse, who rides quickly, went on ahead and Bryan and I made our way to White River. We stopped for a snack and chatted with a local who informed us that the provincial park we had planned on camping at was now closed indefinitely. That was not great news. But, the town offers camping in the park by the Winnie the Pooh statue. For free! Needles to say, I am very excited. Mostly about my current proximity to a childhood legend. It’s totally worth going over to use the bathroom in the 24 hour Husky gas station.
Because of this slight set back (camping 40km short of our intended campsite) Bryan and I have decided to split the remaining kilometres and add an extra day to the trip to Sault Saint Marie. It means doing slightly fewer kilometres per day, which is more than ok with me.
After getting to know the town (population 1000), I set up my tent. I tried to see if I could get set up before the mosquitoes found me. I could not. I didn’t even get my tent unhooked from my bicycle before I was devoured. I take back everything I’ve ever said before about being covered in mosquito bites because every time I think I’ve hit the bottom, the floor opens up beneath me and I discover more bites. There’s just no winning.

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