Sunday, October 19, 2014

Fall ride report

Who knew it was so hard to have a beer in Canada?

Oh wait, that's not the story.

I went for a ride today.  Windy but warm.  Since we're in the second half of October, there's no guarantee that we'll have decent weather again so I decided I needed a good long ride.  I've got a book called Destination Highways: British Columbia and I periodically pull it out and hit one of the rides listed.

Today, a few observations.

Books about best riding roads have a limited shelf life.  Apart from the fact that Stave Lake Road doesn't actually go all the way to Stave Lake, the road has fallen into a certain amount of disrepair.  There are bumpy patches and patchy bumps.  There are a fair number of cracks to distract your tires.  The ride itself was pleasant, however.

Maybe I should start at the beginning.  Headed up Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) through Maple Ridge and towards Mission.  Before I got to Mission I turned onto 287th, which turns into Wilson, which takes you to Dewdney Trunk Road.  A nice windy road, stuck behind a few locals on their ways home but other than that, a decent enough ride.  I think that this ride is really just to get you to Dewdney Trunk.   DT is a nice motorcycle road, lots of long sweeping curves, well paved, and almost no traffic.  Turn left on Richards.

Wait.  How did I get all the way back to Hwy 7.  I never saw a Richards.  Turn around, head back up, rode right past it.  Turn right on Richards.  Another nice road, but short, which takes you to Stave Lake Road.  As mentioned.

All the way north to Harley Road, some pretty decent bits and after the southernmost part being as described above, the northernmost part wasn't too bad.  Opened up a little bit, not so many really tight corners with bad pavement.  Across Harley to Sylvester and this is where the real riding kicked in.  Not one bad corner, not one bit of bad pavement.  Long sweeping curves all the way to Dewdney on Highway 7.

And so I decided to stop and have a beer.  I happen to know that there is a pub in Dewdney.  Never been there but driven past about a million times.  Old Dewdney Inn or somesuch.  Bikes out front.

Lady: Ticket?
Me: What?
Lady: Ticket for the jam?
Me: I'm just here to have a beer
Lady: We're having a Blues Jam but you can have a beer.  You'll have to stand while you drink it and stay over to the left side by the bar.

Over to the left there are numerous tables, all with "Reserved" signs sitting on them.  After a couple minutes of standing near the bar being ignored by the serving girls I left.

Okay.  When I turned north off Highway 7 there was a pub right there.  The Shake and Shingle or somesuch.  Back down Highway 7 through Mission (hasn't improved with age), right on 287th, pull into the S&S parking lot.  There's a sign on the door that says "Due to shortages in staffing, we will be open Tuesday through Saturday".  7.1% unemployment in Mission and they can't roust up a few people to come in and sell people beer.  Probably more lucrative to collect unemployment.

Okay.  Back into Mission to take Highway 11 across the Fraser River (no tolls on the Mission Bridge), down through Abbotsford, either I'll see something or I'll cut across Highways 1, 17, 91, and 99 into White Rock.  Ceili's Irish Pub has good beer, good burgers, and pretty waitresses.

It's about a 45 minute ride or so, pull off and there's a notice tacked to the door announcing to all and sundry that the locks have been changed and that the premises are for lease.  So much for that becoming a regular hangout.

Oh well.  I'm five minutes from home EXCEPT that the Nexus line stretches all the way back to the Duty Free shop.  Longest I've ever seen it.  Shut off the bike.  Coast down the hill whenever there is a decent sized gap in front of me.  Fire up the bike when there isn't a hill.

Home and making Goat Cheese Pizza for dinner.  A nice ride, good weather, probably could have gone without the jacket until the ride home, but that will keep me going for a bit if it socks in here.

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