To Nairn Centre

I awoke this morning to the sound of rain. Tonight will be my first night camping alone since I entered Ontario 2 weeks ago. Is this Mother Nature’s way of saying welcome back? If so, I don’t want it.
Fortunately, the rain let up after I packed up my sodden tent. Dino and I went for some breakfast at the Tim Horton’s in Blind River and the Wanderers went ahead. Of course, two touring cyclists arriving at a coffee shop at a busy time illicit questions. I had almost forgotten what those questions were like – when I was travelling with Bryan everyone was interested in his tricycle and no one cared what I had to say (mostly). One guy actually asked me if it was my tricycle and when I told him it was not he walked away. I usually do enjoy talking with people about the trip, but it was nice to have a break from the usually monotonous questions.
The ride today was quite nice. The heat from the last couple of days had let up, but the humidity was still there. Along highway 17 we went, over rolling hills and by eighteen wheelers. What fun! Since leaving Lake Superior at Sault Sainte Marie the scenery has changed quite a bit and arguably (or not arguably) become less enticing. The trees just don’t look as nice as they did a few days ago, so it’s less rewarding to pedal so hard.
I arrived in Espanola, about 100km from Blind River and went to the grocery store, where I found Dino and the Wanderers. After grocery shopping we were sitting outside and several other cyclists arrived, all of whom I had met the nights before at Velorution. Including me, there were 9 touring cyclists outside the grocery store in Espanola – what were the chances?
Everyone else was heading down to Manitoulin Island, so they all took off south. I hadn’t quite decided on a campground yet and went in search of one. After going around town for a while I decided that all of the campgrounds were either shut down or way too far away from the highway for my taste, so I decided to continue on to Nairn Centre, a town about 15km east toward Sudbury. Since Espanola was a few km from the highway and I had basically done a tour of it, I ended up doing about 140km today (to Nairn Centre) instead of my intended 100. At least I was that much closer to Sudbury.
I had to stop in a gas station to get directions to the campground, but I eventually arrived. I think I probably looked quite frazzled (it was now 7:45pm), so the woman who ran the campground gave me a discounted rate. I really must try this more often.
I set up my tent and had dinner. The couple in the RV at the site next to me kept glancing over and the woman came and chatted and made sure I had something to cook with – she was going to offer me their campfire if I had needed it. I like her.
They later came over and asked if I knew what the weather was going to be like tonight. “Sunny?” I said, hopeful. They laughed and informed me that there was a thunderstorm watch in effect, and that they could see the storm clouds moving in. Awesome. They told me I was welcome to use the canopied area of his father’s RV (the father was not home) to store my belongings if the weather got very bad. They really are awesome people.
After some mosquito torture and a much needed shower, I am in my tent. The rain is starting.



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