Dec, 2020 back to Feb, 2013: (nothing)
Jan, 2013 back to Oct, 2011: (nothing)
It's always raining in Canada's maritime provinces. Rain dive-bombs from above, it sloshes under-wheel and it materializes out of thin air—or, to be more literal, out of thick air. Waterfalls don't send up mist because there's no space for mist in this air. There's only space for me, curling over my handlebars to make myself hydrodynamic.
The sun peeks out one day in New Brunswick. Its heat makes my camera lens so foggy I fear I've lost my window to the world. Life returns to normal soon enough: the lens and rain restore themselves simultaneously.
It's drizzling. This dreary Friday morning, I'm munching fruit leather near Saint John River. The Trans-Canada Highway isn't far and there's a bridge beside me. Haze silences all.
Sep, 2011 back to Aug, 2011: (nothing)
The Adam of Canada Day was in a foul mood.
For one thing, there weren't enough nice people. When a friendly old man chatted with him after second breakfast at a diner, the conversation turned to politics Adam had to hide his anger. The man disliked New Brunswick's requirement that government employees must speak French. Adam thought, but didn't say, that the policy seems reasonable because a third of New Brunswick's population is natively French-speaking. Adam made three polite attempts to extricate himself from the discussion: first by donning his gloves, second by walking over to the counter to pay for his meal, and finally by riding away and shouting goodbye over his shoulder.
The bad day began with a rotten night before. Adam had chosen to treat himself to a motel room, which the owner offered to cyclists at $69 instead of $89. As he showed Adam the room, the man had complained about cyclists demanding cheap fares. He'd pointed to the second bed in the room and told Adam that if he so much as touched it, the fare would rise by $20. Ditto for the second towel in the bathroom. Adam had fantasized about peeing on the second bed and stealing the towels, but in the end he'd done nothing.
Grand Falls, New Brunswick, has some grand falls.
Early explorers paddled through the rocky, lake-y, swampy Canadian Shield. Then came dynamite, then trains, then roads.
Today, 1,500 kilometres of narrow Trans-Canada Highway weave near lakes, cross rivers and climb hills, taking frequent shortcuts through blasted outcrops.
The outcrops are miniature echoes from Rockies roads, some 10 metres high, others peaking below my shoulders. Couples have eternalized their love on them by spray-painting hearts and their initials.
A scrawl of white paint shouts from one glistening rock face: IN MOMERY OF PICKY.
For the confused among my readers, I'm working on my Next Big Thing: a bicycle trip across Canada.
I'm riding from the west coast to the east coast.
Mile 0 of the Trans-Canada Highway is in Victoria. There are thousands of miles (and even more thousands of kilometres) between there and the end.
My bicycle is a Surly Long Haul Trucker. Edward at Ride Bicycles in Seattle taped the handlebar grips at the very beginning of my journey.
A map is available at http://track.adamhooper.com/#2011-05-17--2011-05-24.
I fell sick in Winnipeg and had to be nursed back to health.
I introduce my latest web creation: http://track.adamhooper.com. It tells you where I've been and where I am. As I blog, you'll see improvements on that site.
But enough about me. How about those Manitoba floods? They've been all over the Canadian news lately.
The sun sets by a wind power generator near Moosomin, Saskatchewan.
A tale told each May on cold Prairie days
Is worthy of space on my site.
It's Bicycle rolling down well-ridden roads
And Wind coming, asking to fight.
The rider crouched down, with not half a frown,
Requesting the wind to abate.
“I'm too oft due east,” shot Wind, shunning peace,
“This year you'll be trapped and made late.”
The ducks flapping east soon flapped without cease;
Wind's gusts spun them 'round with a breeze.
The waves grew white teeth in ditches beneath,
And cans cartwheeled west just to tease.
Today the mountains deserted me. I'm past passes.
And what marvels those passes are.
A flag flaps at the top of Rogers Pass.
Rogers Pass is a famous route through the Selkirk Mountains, just west of the Rocky Mountains. It rises to 1,330 metres in altitude. Major Rogers discovered the pass in 1882 for the Canadian Pacific railway, in return for $5,000 and the name. It avoided a 240-kilometre detour around the mountains.
May, 2011 back to Jan, 2011: (nothing)
Did you know: digital cameras, from $100 to $10,000, only capture one colour per pixel?
Today's cameras produce vibrant pictures from monochrome sensors. Here's how.
It starts when light hits the back of the camera. This is where the "megapixels" of the camera come in: each pixel, or tiny square of colour, corresponds to one of the camera's millions of sensors. Each sensor says how much light hit it.
Dec, 2010 back to Sep, 2010: (nothing)