Day 99 Ivy Lea to Johnstown, Ontario: Ok, you're divorced! - Grampies on the Go - CycleBlaze

August 7, 2011

Day 99 Ivy Lea to Johnstown, Ontario: Ok, you're divorced!


No, the Grampies have not really split up. It was just nearly a divorce of convenience. See below for more details.

Misty Isles camping is in the middle of the Thousand Isles region, at the beginning of the St.Lawrence River just beyond Gananoque at Ivy Lea. The Thousand Isles Parkway runs along the river for a while, but eventually devolves into the no shoulder Highway 2.

Evening at Misty Isles campsite
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Gerard and Dodie work on into the night
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The Parkway runs right by the river
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and the bike path runs right by the Parkway
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We like being welcomed but could not discern any real benefits
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Welcomecyclists.ca sounds like a good idea, but (with limited time and wifi)it only seemed to map businesses that claimed to be cyclist friendly, without them having to say what that means. As you will read below, that can lead to confusion, hard feelings, and even potential divorce!

The river is not blue like the lakes but it is still pretty
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The Parkway ends abruptly near Butternut Bay
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Kingston really gave a feel for its history, with lots of stone buildings. Brockville was not quite as impressive, but it still had many many interesting places.

Check out this roof at Brockville
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Another unique place in Brockville
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Part of downtown Brockville
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For the second straight day we struck it lucky by coming when a market was ongoing. In this case, the Ribfest was not just a market but a bit of heaven for anyone into BBQ! We found it by asking a local couple on the street what would be a good place to eat in Brockville, and it turned out they were on their way to Ribfest. At first it looks like a fair or farmers' market with hopefully some food stalls, but when you turn a corner, wow! There are many trailers set up, each with full blow BBQ facilities. That is, behind the cooks are shiny stainless steel ovens and warming cabinets and refrigerators and in front of them are large flat BBQ surfaces. They are cooking up pork ribs and chicken on these in large quantities, with appropriate amounts of smoke and flame. Above the trailers are 30 foot high garish billboards containing many smaller posters covering past contest wins of the trailer, prices, and general claims. The set up for each trailer is exactly the same, making for quite a display!

Ribfest! This stall used all real fruit.
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Interesting bizarre large boards tout past successes of each BBQ operator
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This stall used real wood. Others used charcoal or propane.
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Each stall placed its trophies out front
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Wood fire with perfect ribs
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I take a turn to show them how to do it right!
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This has been going on for 11 years
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This pin focuses on where we are now
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We got the pin from the tourism survey kids and it now adorns my front bag. This could be a good place for the pins we picked up from a few mayors along the route.

Despite reference to some US stuff, we believe the BBQ people were Ontario based
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We encounted a few cyclists on the Ribfest site. Garry was an attention getter because of the airplane on his helmet. It's a little hard to see in the photo.

Garry Johnson is a local cyclist with a unique ornament on his helmet. I asked Garry to crouch so the camera could see the helmet - he is not really this short!
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Garry has a mascot too!
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We voted for Jack the Ribber, but were not well informed since we did not try the others. We would have needed several more days for that!
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More Streets of Brockville
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Loyalist colours adorn a Brockville porch
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Another great porch
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Two great houses in Brockville
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We continued out of Brockville, and continued to be gratified with the speed with which towns on the map came up.

Bud the Spud really belongs in the "bright red mud" of PEI
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A history lesson
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More about the same site
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Glen (oldmanonabike) had also photographed the Blue Church. We were most interested in the fact that it was locked. We wonder if this is truly in keeping with the church philosophy.

The story of the Blue Church
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The Blue Church
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The grave of the founder of the Methodist Church. Would she have approved of the fact that the door of the Blue Church is locked?
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Oh my, yet another trail or parkway
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We were thinking that we would need some food for supper at the campsite for supper, but could not really find anything at Prescott.

Prescott has no bakery and few services
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Failing to find supplies in Prescott, we considered hopping back to the USA for a sandwich.
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Only Steve refused to go on the bridge
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The dessert part of the buffet at the Bridgeview
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Glen (the bum!) also found and photographed the Bridgeview and the Bridge!

The Bridgeview in Johnstown
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The Bridge
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The Grenville Park camp site was identified by Glen as charging just $10 (plus tax)for cyclists, so we made a point of going there. We were shocked when the lady proposed to charge us $26.50! Her cuckoo logic was that the $10 rate was a special offer to single cyclists and her regular "family" rate is $26.50. So first of all, I apparently have to divorce Dodie. That way we could arrive as two single cyclists and I guess only pay $20! If I then sleep with her, who's to know (don't ask, don't tell policy!). Of course we also have the other outrageous ploy (seen once before in Ontario, but nowhere in the rest of North America!) of charging double for two people in one tent. We are really ticked about this! The lady also said her policies were based in the "welcome cyclists"" idea and organisation. We don't consider it too welcoming to be first of all charged $26.50 because we are two cyclists instead of one. And to reiterate, we don't consider it welcoming to (after protesting the $26.50 ripoff) to be charged $20 for a single tent spot while others with a single tent spot pay $10.

The argument that two people use twice the resources (made by the avaricious lady at Salem Woods campground) is particularly spurious here, since the showers are pay showers, there is no electricity, and all tents are sharing a single picnic table. (Ok, so Dodie and I are more of a crowd at the single lame table than just one person would be - I guess she could sit on my lap!). To boot, even the wifi they have here is on a pay basis. And yes, they charge per IP address, so if you have one computer in each hand you will pay double.

As one campground operator quipped (using the government's slogan) when I cried about the tax added to the quoted site fee "Ontario - yours to discover!"

Dodie in the St.Lawrence
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She's in, but not too happy about it!
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A large ship traverses the river. They seem very graceful as they glide by.
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Some people were zooming around in a large jetski in front of the campground. They fell off and the machine zoomed ahead before stopping, presumably because of a deadman switch. Someone must have been injured, because a lot of police and fire resources arrived shortly thereafter. However, also shortly thereafter, someone else was zooming around again, also with no hands on the steering.
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Just after the bridge and before we arrived at Grenville Park campground, a young cyclist pulled up beside us and asked where we intended to spend the night. This was Cameron, about a week out from Detroit and headed through Quebec, to Maine and then to Key West.After that, he might do the Southern Tier! Naturally we all headed to Grenville Park, where we found that Gerard (from France) had already just arrived. So that gave us a touring cyclist party, with lots to talk about. Actually there are some claims out there that there was too much talk, which accounts for why I am sitting here at 6:30 a.m. finishing the blog entry for yesterday!

Cameron
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Dodie, Cameron, and Gerard
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Today's ride: 75 km (47 miles)
Total: 6,089 km (3,781 miles)

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