May 6th, Grande Prairie, AB

Hi Folks!
I have been without internet for several days. I am currently in Grande Prairie, AB at the home of Andrea and Jed Locke. The Lockes are hosting us for this evening; I met them indirectly through warmshowers.org
Andrea

Andrea

A little catching up. We left the Sagitawah campground in Whitecourt, AB. Normally, I would say that any campground is the same as any other. But this place was nice. The people managing the site were incredibly helpful and friendly. Further, we were greeted by two kittens as we registered.
Kittens

Kittens

An early start out of Sagitawah put us on a road for what would have normally been an easy 52 mile ride into Fox Creek. Numerous hills and moderate headwinds, made for an exhausting ride. The scenery made it worthwhile, however.
Moose

Moose

Scenery

Scenery

A river

A river

The next day was a 70 mile ride to the Sturgeon Lake campground. We had a couple of firsts on the ride: the first mention of the Alaskan Highway
First sign for Alaskan Highway

First sign for Alaskan Highway

and the first sighting of a bear. (A startled deer was a clue to the bear’s presence.)
The 70 mile ride was plauged by headwinds. I ended up drafting about 30 of those miles and saved a bit of energy. But when we arrived at the campground near Sturgeon lake, we found that is was closed. We were all prepared for a bit of “stealth” camping, but noticed that there was a “Golf Resort and Campground” nearby. Another 4 mile ride took us to the resort. After talking with the manager about where to camp, it became clear that she thought we were coming with a camper or an RV, and that “their campground was not set up for tent camping.” The reason given was that there was no bathroom for tenters to use.
I explained that we had no choice, as we had used up that last bit of energy cycling to their campground. It was let us camp or cary us away. The manager eventually capitulated and asked us to set up camp near the bathrooms and showers. (Wait, I thought they didn’t have restrooms?) When I asked if we could fill our water bottles, they said “no.” Aparently, they had to purchase their water, as what came out of the taps was not potable. They did allow us to purchase some at $2 a pint. Nice!
Greenview Golf Resort

Greenview Golf Resort

What an exhausting day! After all of this effort, what do you suppose we would have for dinner?
IMG_0300
Yep–you guessed it. Elk tenderloin. Absolutely delicious. The previous evening, a gentlemen came by and gave us a frozen tenderloin, from an elk he shot himself. I wrapped it in a towel and kept it wet during the day. The evaporating water kept the temperature low, and the meat unspoiled. Of course, we mixed it with Ramen noodles, but it was great nonetheless.
The next day, we encountered very bad head winds and needed to lay low. So we decided to stop in Debolt, AB. On the way, we passed a small general store. While we sat and had lunch, multiple customers came and purchased donuts by the dozen. We spoke with a women–the genius behind the donuts–and aparently they cook and sell donuts by the THOUSANDS each week. I tasted one (yes, I know it is not on my diet) and I concur that they are without a doubt the best donuts in the world. The dough is soft rather than filled with air. Hard to describe…

Crooked Creek General Store

Crooked Creek General Store

The ride today into Grande Prairie was uneventful except for a killer hill at the half-way point.
Another river

Another river

Once in town, we stopped at a bike shop (Fourword Bike and Board) to purchase a tire, and to talk to the mechanic about my derailer (still giving me some problems, although much improved after affecting the repair suggested by the Boulder Bikesmith.) This shop had two dogs who begged for attention constantly. They were a lot of fun, chasing their toy! One of the dogs even crapped on the floor for an authentic look.
Bike shop dog

Bike shop dog

Tomorrow we start a 2-day treck to Dawson Creek, the official start of the Alaskan Highway. Until next time…
Scott

8 Responses to “May 6th, Grande Prairie, AB

  • Mind the frost heaves and enjoy the scenery on this next half of your Alaska leg!

    • Thanks koby! What is a frost heave?

      • How do you feel about roller coasters? 😉

        A frost heave is basically an upwards lifting of the ground caused by water freezing, thawing, re-freezing, etc. It causes fairly significant bumps in the ground, and more pertinent to your situation, in the roads. From your point of view, they will appear as fairly low-frequency mini hills (3″ to 12″+) in the road and can cause a few pot holes and road damage. Have fun!

  • It was great to meet you two! Thanks for the great visit. Safe travels!

    • Was nice to meet you guys too! Thank you so much for your hospitality.

  • Tim Towell
    2 years ago

    Glad you are riding away from the fires. Better finish that elk before the bears get on your trail.
    May the wind be at your back!

  • Kathy Clucas
    2 years ago

    Sad about the ‘resort’ people. I guess not everyone practices hospitality. But I’m so glad that most of the people you are meeting are kind and helpful! Keep pedaling, brother. ❤️

  • conrad wells
    2 years ago

    I just heard about your trek! Fantastic, Hope you are enjoying the view! Keep up the pedaling!

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