Saturday, July 21 2018
After a restful night’s sleep, I was ready to go again, however, rain was in the forecast in the afternoon for my route. I ate the complimentary breakfast that was available at 7 am so that I could get an early start. The breakfast was quite good. The food was all very fresh, plus the area was clean and well maintained.
I packed up my bike and put the rain covers on the bags before I left at 8:20 am. For the first 2 hours of my ride, the conditions were cool and overcast. My ride started with a steep incline after I crossed the river west of the Elgin area.
I took highway 3 for most of the ride and at 9:30 I saw a small cafe called the Holland House, so I stopped for a coffee and a muffin before continuing on my way. Ironically, they had the ‘ Tour de France’ on the TV in the restaurant.
Shortly after I left the cafe, the rain started. A slight drizzle quickly changed to a downpour so I ducked under a big tree for a few minutes until it stopped. For the next 3 hours, there was intermittent rain and each time I was starting to get dry, it would rain again. At 11:30, I saw a sign for Blueberries and ice cream, so I had to stop and get a scoop of Blueberry Cheesecake ice-cream.
It started to rain again shortly after I left and at 12:30 I stopped at the Crazy Eight Barn Cafe and Gifts for lunch. This is a very unique restaurant and gift shop that is worth seeing. I ordered the special: egg-salad sandwich with sweet potato soup, bean salad and Very Berry Ice Tea. It was all very good.
When I left the cafe, I noticed that it had stopped raining and the sun was trying to avoid the clouds, however it remained overcast for most of the day. After the rest at the cafe, my body started to rebel and I was feeling a bit of discomfort. I checked my options and there was a decent motel in Blenheim but the next hotel or campsite would be near Leamington which would require me to ride over 140 km for the day. I had ridden 65 km to the cafe so I decided to stop for the night in Blenheim.
The views remained similar to the previous days. Most of the spring wheat fields have been gleaned and the hay has been baled. The other crops are in various stages of growth. As I got farther southwest, I was able to see the lake past the crops on the south side of the road.
The people living in this area of Ontario tend to drive large trucks and SUVs and a lot of the trucks that passed me were pulling trailers or campers. The traffic has been light and most drivers have been very courteous when passing me by moving over to the oncoming lane when it is clear, however, there are always a few that can’t wait a few seconds and only move over slightly while passing me in order to squeeze between me and the oncoming traffic , sometimes forcing the oncoming traffic to move on to the shoulder.
By 3:20 pm, I arrived at the Silver Motel just south of Blenheim and checked into the last available room. The temperature had gotten a little warmer so I was able to dry my clothes, tent and sleeping mat outside while I took a shower and rested. At 5:30 pm, I walked over to the Pub & Grill at the Willow Ridge Golf & Country Club for something to eat before returning to my room to write my journal.
Day 4 – St Thomas to Blenheim:
Distance Travelled: 90 km
Travel Time: 5 hrs
Conditions: 20 – 23 C ( 68 – 74 F) overcast and a little windy with rain from 10:30 am until 2 pm.
Accommodations: Silver Motel Blenheim ( $70 )