the Sun is shining down on me

 After telling you about all the things I lost in the last post I figured a more positive start would be appreciated.Canada yayaya

So I’ll start with a few of the things I’ve been given in the past few weeks.

Besides the waves, smiles, best luck wishes and a lot of sunshine.

There have been gallons of beer!

And a few new and interesting other forms of alcohol…Fireball

Also, chocolate and sweets and a few more basic necessities a touring cyclist needs.

People here seem very concerned with my safety, so I’ve been given cans of bearspray a very high-vis mining-type vest and a huge knife that’s proudly hanging of my bike.

Bills got paid for me, in both restaurant and shops, one lady even handed me a 20$ note to go have a coffee! (I did & thank you so much)

And I got a Tim Horton’s gift card, the place is a Canadian fast food chain founded by a hockey player with the same name. There I’ll be able to have even more coffee’s 🙂

This friendly fellow decided to pay my camp fee and gave me a stubby cooler (with can)

Beer!He happened to have a lovely fire going so I chopped him some wood. Or tried anyway.

There was the slightly intoxicated man in the saloon in Greenwood with a great grin and a few teeth missing who offered me to come up the mountain and meet some real hillbillies… But I was a little busy riding my bicycle.

Of course there was Ted with the iPod and Jewels with the bikini. (see last post)

And this is Loretta,


she filled up my water bottles also invited me in for a cuppa and lots of fresh fruit.

Richard in Invermere had given me a Kettle Valley Railroad book which set the course for this leg of the trip.
some bits and pieces transformed. A little while later a couple gave me a back road map book.

These are the best as every single used and disused road in BC is in it. OK, it’s a bit to carry around but it will take you to real fun places…

The oddest thing someone gave me was a small bag of marijuana. A guy jumped off his quatbike and just handed it to me.The guy with the weed Is that even legal out here?

I know cycling without a helmet isn’t… Apparently.what helmet?

And so is walking through a red light.


The Kettle Valley Railtrail winds its way over more than 800km of disused railway tracks.

glorious track!

Stretches of it are part of the Trans Canada Trail. That gave me a brand new wonderful idea.. 😉some people disagree

I thought it might be a bit easy as the grades are never more that 2.2%. But with parts of the trails in use by off-road bikes it gets pretty rough in places. It does feel strange to suddenly be high up in the mountains with glorious views without actually having to work hard for it.

View along the track

Almost feels like cheating. Almost, not completely.Oh the Joy!

It was here I saw my first two bears. A mother and her cub. But they were away in a flash before I could even reach my camera.

Not to worry, I’m sure I’ll get a few more opportunities soon!

Stopped in a small town for some supplies a lady ran over my bike! It was clearly parked out front. She didn’t bother stopping and disappeared before I even knew it happened. Lucky some alert by-passers noted her plate. Not that I had any damage.


Now I heard there was another guy cycling in the area. So we arranged to meet up at this particular camp area.

Except he never made it. Being without phone service I had no idea what might have happened  but I had a great evening with Penny & Dean telling stories around the fire, roasting marshmallows and drinking beer.Penny & Dean's camp

It was the next morning their 4-year old granddaughter pretty well described my life in one short sentence.

“Wow, you live camping!”Smart little girl

Spot on.

I rode on through the forest,

The Forestand met a fellow on a bike coming in my direction, From Pittsburghe’s from the States and hurried east to see the autumn colours. But not before we had a coffee and a chat.

Autumn here is rather lovely too.chipmunk

When I got sight of towns way down in the valley,Towns down below

I received the message on my phone; “Hey, just hanging out with Penny and Dean, perhaps you know them…

So I decided to wait. I am not in any major hurry.

And this is  a stunning part of the trail,Myra canyonMyra Canyon, I didn’t mind much hanging around for a little while and taking pictures, Just chillin'enjoying the scene.

This was a particularly tricky part to build the railway tracks back in the day.back in the day

There’s 18 trestles One of 18and two tunnels, one of which made for an excellent camp.Camp in tunnel

(don’t mind my face there, it’s still before coffee..)

But another sunshiny day ahead of me and this time I had some company.


Howard has been riding his bike since last June.

He started at Inuvik and is headed south for warmer weather. As I’m roughly headed east to west out path only crossed briefly.

A glorious, gentle 50km downhill ride took us down to Penticton. Howie heading down the track

Famous for it’s vineyards and orchards.Penticton hillsHoward had been there before and knew a perfect camp spot.Almost perfect

Well.. almost perfect as the signs all said ‘No Camping‘. But he reckoned no one ever comes down to check.

And it was lovely!

Until that angry lady from the town council came down with her dogs to kick us of her beach.


After town I headed west back into the bush while Howie continued on his mission down south. The track was still beautiful although I was a little surprised by the amount of vehicles going up to nowhere. So it seemed.

But that’s when Mike & Kelsey pulled over and told me they were on their way to a bush party.Mike, Kelsey & me

A couple off hours later I found myself in the middle of a rave. Now I haven’t been to many rave’s before. Never really has been much my ‘scene’. An interesting experience for sure and the fireball did help.

But I was pretty amazed to see little girls dressed in nothing but furry boots and a pink tail and rabbit ears. They must’ve been absolutely freezing! (ok, I feel old now)

The ‘music’ never stopped until 9am. So with not much sleep I didn’t get awfully far that day. But I was lucky to run into two lovely gentleman on a camp area with who I could sit around the fire, talk, admire the moonNice moon and have a few beers. my sceneI guess that’s my ‘scene’ (Yup, definitely old 😉

In the morning I was woken by the lovely blue birds chirping out the front of my tent.Pretty bird

My wayCycling through some nice little towns like Princeton,a proper ranch

Coalmont and Tulameen you feel like going back in time.Coalmont Hotel

Be warned though!Warning

Looking for a place to pitch my tent I got talking to Sonja, who together with her husband Ray happened to have a summer cabin at the lake.

Ray builds Yurts. That’s his business. Yurt

I never expected to sleep in a yurt in Canada!

They’ve given me their very useful back road map book with made me happy and got me onto some proper back roads later on!

Ray, Sonja & Jack

Neighbour Jack, who happens to be Dutch came ’round in the morning and we admired the birds birdand the weather.Lake is pretty

The weather has been very surprising. Just sunshine!

hello sunshine

I love it. old shack

The actual track was underneath the road now. But there were still signs of the old railway lines about.Old Watertower

Watch out for trucks though!Trucks

There is a couple of big sawmills in Merritt.Merritt

Where I nearly ran into ElvisThe King

And a bunch of guys with hats.Yup

It’s also Lynne’s hometown. Lynne & ChiShe happens to be Ted’s cousin. And what was supposed to take me about 5 days ended up taking about twice as long! But with her and her enthusiastic little dog Chai I had a lovely evening and a great sleep before a long day to Pritchard.

The road I took was supposed to be a back way. But along with me about 748 truck drivers decided to take it.

With no shoulder to speak off it was a hazardous business and I was very happy to be able to turn off onto the Campbell Creek Road.whoop whoop Better roads

A lovely quiet farming valley that took me out the east end of Kamloops. Where I had places to go and people to see.

one of those

More about that soon -(ish)

back to top

20 thoughts on “the Sun is shining down on me

  1. Ziet er weer geweldig uit! Leuke mensen daar (ook al..:-) ) En nee hoor, je bent nog niet écht oud…. hahaha.
    Lieft uit Apeldoorn,

    ‘de oude man…’

  2. Heerlijk om jouw avonturen te lezen! Mocht je ooit nog beslissen om weer naar de VS te rijden, kom dan even langs in Utah!

  3. Hey Mirjam, je laat ons geweldig meegenieten. Met plezier en verlangen om met je mee te fietsen kijk ik naar je prachtige foto’s en yes Canada is the place to be. Wij hebben in de buurt van Toronto en Manitoba gefietst zo’n 25 jaar geleden en ook een adder gezien ….geen beren maar wel prachtige Indian Summer en heerlijke frisse Canadese lucht….. enjoy en laat ons nog lang meereizen dikke knuffel vanuit een grijs nat en koud Nederland groetjes Dory XXXXX

  4. Love your tellings keep it comming. Can not wait for your next update.
    Lively and lovely pictures
    Marianne, Denmark

  5. Wat leuk en mooi!!! En ik moet wel nu denken dat je zou ons kant op komen!!! 🙂 nou je bent wel net zo ver nu dan als wij jou vorige keer hebben gezien maar dien andere kant op! Ik ben benieuwd waar je daarna gaat!

  6. If you are coming through western Washington state feel free to swing on by. I’d love to host you at Mount Rainier National Park.

  7. I’m in awe of your ability to meet and get along with so many different people! That would be harder for me than the bike riding.

    Thank you for sharing your adventures. It makes me happy to know you’re out there enjoying life on the road. 🙂

  8. I eat “Mon Chéry_the Piedmont cherry”, which are cherry liqueur chocolates. Currently, there are hardly any clouds in the sky, there is hardly any wind and the temperatures are at + 10 ° C / + 4 ° C. It is a sunny November.

  9. Wonderful to see all the photos…some of them are places we have been on our bikes – your photographic eye is outstanding, Mirjam…makes me want to visit all of those places again! We are so lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world.

    Margaret and David from Radium Hot Springs

  10. Great trip. Compliments for your adventure, and I hope to see you in Sardinia, for your next tarvel around the world, cycling in this beatiful country.
    Ciao From Italy

  11. Yay Canada!!! Love that you visited our beautiful country and got to experience the religion that is Tim Horton’s, and got to try that fabulous cinnamon liquor, Dr. MgGillicudy’s Fireball!! Hope you visit again soon!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s