Day 18: Calgary to Bassano 147k

A common trend I have found on the morning after rest days, especially those where I have slept in a proper bed, is that it’s impossible to get out of bed. As fulfilling as a day of cycling can be, there is a lot of pain and suffering as well. There might be no showers, or bad weather. There might be no stores where you hope. Even worse there might be nowhere to buy cold beer!

So I stayed in bed as long as I could.

I got to packing and bid Curtis farewell. After a tiring climb up one of Calgary’s hills I came to an embarrassing realization. I had forgot my water bottles. I called Curtis and sheepishly asked if he might be able to drive them to where I was. I really didn’t want to climb that hill again. I again thanked Curtis for all the help and got going.

When people speak of the prairies in terms of cycling they always say they are super sunny, hot and have huge tailwinds (if you go from west to east).

I managed to catch them when they were overcast, cold, and had strong headwinds.

The day seemed to drag on forever. I’m not sure if it was the let down of the weather, or the substantially slower speeds from wind and load. I also missed my valet, Pete.

When people speak of the prairies being boring endless flats where you can see miles in every direction they are speaking of southeast Alberta.

Pulling into Bassano did little to raise spirits. Much of the main street was shuttered. Portions at the restaurant were small and the food bland. After tucking in for the night I was awoken rudely by the sound of a train whistle. The campground was about 100 feet from an active rail corridor. This happened several times over the course of the night. In the morning I realized it would probably be part of every night through the prairies as most towns were on the highway/rail line.

This sign accurately describes how I felt about the prairies at this point.


Here are several pictures of the amazingly varied scenery.






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