Duck Leaves

We spent a couple nights on Saltspring Island at the cabin. One of the things we did was go for a dog walk at Duck Creek. This is a favourite activity of ours. The park is a gem to explore and there are always lots of interesting things to investigate no matter what time of year we go.

Fall is especially fun with all the leaves falling, and the park getting ready for winter.

We managed to get our walk in then headed back to the cabin before it started pouring rain again.

Saltspring Slasher

Ever hear of the Saltspring Slasher? I hadn’t until last weekend. This was a longboard competition on Saltspring Island and we went to check it out. Wow, very fun. The corner we were watching from was a switchback just before the finish line. Lots of chances to see the riders make the corner, crash, pass each other, and just have a good time.

As they approached the corner they were going around 85 KM/H, and to slow down before the corner, they would do a speed check which involved putting a hand down on the pavement and sliding the board perpendicular to the road to scrub off speed. Their gloves all had a puck made of some hard plastic. Incredible.

Hay bales lined the corner and we soon saw why. Sometimes hey didn’t slow down enough and couldn’t make the corner. Rather than hit the dirt and slide into the trees, they would hit the bales in spectacular fashion.

I’d come back again next year to watch again. It really was quite spectacular. I loved their shuttle to the top too. They had pickups and as many guys would jump in the back as possible. Anyone else wanting a ride up held on to the truck and it would pull them up.

It was great to see that most of them had full leathers on, including the 9 year old kid who was racing. There were a couple guys who didn’t but they were the minority. It was also good to see the racing spirit between they guys too. We saw one guy make a mistake and take another guy out into the hay bales. As they jumped up laughing they shook hands and joked about it.

Check your calendars next year, and head to Saltspring if you can. It is worth the trip.

Here are some videos I took:

Twisty Cookie

Best $2 I ever spent? Before today I might not have an answer, but I do now.

I’ve been on Saltspring Island for a few days now, but today I went for a lovely ride. I started out close to Ganges, and rode to the South end of the island. Geoff and I stopped at a friends house, then I continued on my way. I ended up riding toward Ruckle Park. The route out there was twisty, turny, up and down. It was a very fun road. Along the way I kept wondering when I should turn around. Eventually I decided I wanted to go all the easy to the ocean. That was until I hit the gravel road that went to the parking lot. As I was turning around a glint fought my eye. There was a twonie on the ground. I snatched it up and put it in my jersey pocket.

My bacon and scrambled eggs breakfast was weighing heavily in my stomach to this point. So much so, that I couldn’t think about eating my Clif Bar. As I was starting to get hungry, I rounded a corner and spotted a sign that said “fresh baked organic food today”. Beside the road was a little stand. I checked out what was available for $2, and lo and behold, the chocolate chip pecan coconut cookies with hand milled organic flour were $2. I snatched one out deposited my money and bit into it. The container was sitting in the sun so the cookie was still warm, and the chips still soft and gooey. Wow, that was one delicious cookie!

Feeling better I got back on my bike and kept riding. I toured the back roads of Saltspring and had a great time in the process. I chased after Geoff, trying to find him at a centre (he took a different route), but never did. Upon my return to the cabin the first thing that Geoff said was that he only got there a couple minutes before I did.

Lunch, followed by an ice cold beer while sitting in the warm sun was the perfect end to the ride.

View August 14 Tour de Saltspring in a larger map

Total Distance: 47.26 km (29.4 mi)
Total Time: 2:32:59
Moving Time: 2:13:16
Average Speed: 18.54 km/h (11.5 mi/h)
Average Moving Speed: 21.28 km/h (13.2 mi/h)
Max Speed: 65.02 km/h (40.4 mi/h)
Min Elevation: 1 m (4 ft)
Max Elevation: 194 m (638 ft)
Elevation Gain: 897 m (2942 ft)
Max Grade: 10 %
Min Grade: -12 %

Island Times

Last weekend we were on Saltspring Island. We stayed at a nice cottage, checked out the Ganges market, went to the beach, went for a hike, and more. It was a lot of fun, but we experienced a lack of sleep unlike anything we had felt in a long time. Both the kids were waking up multiple times in the night, and since we were all sleeping in the one room, well, we all woke up multiple times in the night.

The cottage had a nice flower garden.

The hike was pretty steep, so Amy got carried the whole way.

Snack time.

Snack time silliness.

These trees grew so close together that it almost looked like they were melded together.

Arbutus trees can be quite photogenic.