Day 17: To Purden Lake - Western Canada 2007 - CycleBlaze

July 16, 2007

Day 17: To Purden Lake

I slept late until 9:30 and got on the road at 10:30 under mostly cloudy skies. I saw a bike tourist at the visitor center/railway station in downtown Prince George. I planned to buy groceries on my way out of town. But I discovered there is no more town after passing downtown. Strange for a city of 80,000. I had to backtrack to the other side of town to buy groceries. By then it was so late I stopped for lunch at a pita place. I finally got away from Prince George at 1:30PM!

Translation: prison ahead.
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Fraser river and downtown Prince George.
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The afternoon became gradually more sunny and I still have a tailwind from the west. Mosquitoes were very bad. At least the road east of Prince George has a decent paved shoulder and less traffic than yesterday. The elevation is 600m when I crossed the Fraser river at Prince George. Then I gradually climbed to 800m, well away from the river.

Spectacular roadside flowers.
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I suppose these power lines go to a hydroelectric project farther north.
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Through the endless forest.
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Much of the day's ride was boring. Through the forested rolling hills. No stores or restaurants to give refuge from the mosquitoes. The highway east of Prince George is my longest section with no services.

Rocky mountains in the distance.
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No mosquitos when on a bridge high above the forest.
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I took a long stop in the middle of this bridge because it was the only place all day that had no mosquitoes. All the mosquitoes were far below in the vegetation. Most places I'm swarmed with mosquitoes, even in the sunshine.

All the red trees are dead, killed by pine beetles.
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The road passes many areas where all the mature Lodgepole Pine trees had recently been killed by pine beetles. The infestation is fairly recent because the dead trees are only red for 4 years.

Tonight I camped at the Purden Lake resort. It was either camp for $10 or a cabin for $150. Mosquitoes swarmed even on a sunny open grassy field. I took a shower, cooked dinner, then ate dinner inside my tent. I need to get a good rest because tomorrow I need to go 150km to McBride, upstream with no services.

Distance: 79 km / 49.4 mi

Climbing: 527 m / 1740 ft

Today's ride: 79 km (49 miles)
Total: 1,384 km (859 miles)

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