21st June report, Nancy O’Higgins Drumheller, Alberta to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

The way out of Drumheller was up, of course and the first 21k was accompanied by a side wind. Turning right to Hanna we faced 11k of construction but with a fabulous tail wind. We all arrived at Hanna by 12:30. Why do we always have a tail wind when we have a short day. We found a campground that wanted us (instead of the sour people running the RV camp where we thought we were going) and tried to put up our tents in a wind. Cyclists were chasing ground sheets and tents all over. Two tents were put up in the cook house and the smartypants in them thought they had the best deal until a mouse ran over my face during the night. Sandra talked to the volunteer attendant at the Lake Fox and said what kind of a deal could they give this non-profit group of cyclists. How about zero, he responded. We are very grateful to Ken Fleischaker, Hanna and all the volunteers at the campsite.

Harry offered to give us all haircuts and there were four eager takers. He said he had the right equipment with him. “Oh, were you a hairdresser,” one of the group asked. “No, a sheet metal worker” was the reply. The haircuts waited.

When we stayed at the campsite at Kindersley, again a beautiful sunny day with a tail wind, a ball tournament was being set up at the field next to us. Someone started throwing firecrackers after we were in bed giving us dreams of tents catching fire. One trailer had a loud party which some of us didn’t hear.

Kindersley to Rosetown was again a flying trip with a tail wind. Brendan and Harry got in while a parade was taking place for their annual jamboree and joined the parade. They made it into a lot of photographs of people who probably wonder who they are. A local talent show that night attracted a number of us, watching fiddlers, tap dancers and singers. At the end of the evening Rosetown put on a lengthy fireworks display which some people watched from their tents, others actually got up and went outside, and others of us were not aware that it happened. We were all charmed by Rosetown, not the least because it has a Dairy Queen.

We left with a memorable side wind interspersed with a head wind making our trip to Saskatoon harder than the Coquihalla, according to a few people. It was a long, long day.

Memorable lines to remember ‚ Marina waking up in the morning, stretching and saying, “ah, coffee and ibuprofen, the breakfast of champions.”

Now we are in Saskatoon for a day off and no one is eager to get on bikes. Dan McGuire’s brother, Larry, turned up to welcome us last night and this afternoon is going to take us on a tour of bike store, camping store and a couple of pubs, ending up at his house for a barbecue this evening.