At long last…

Posted by Kieran in MONTREAL
13 Jun 2012


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On the road at last.

After a long flight we touched down in Toronto and headed for the customs department to clear the bikes. The warehouse was not open until the follow day so at least we could get the paper work in order. Customs was really easy with both of up looking at one another and saying "was that it". Into Toronto to look for accommodation and my god the heat was cruel. We got the bus into town from the airport and after wandering around looking for accommodation we found a hostel. It was far from nice but a bed is a bed. We were both pretty tired at this stage and got some must needed gear from the mountain co op store, not. We have enough stuff to sink a battle ship, actually a fleet of them. No idea were it has come from but we have it. Our bikes will not be happy. Went for some burgers and beers and off to bed as tomorrow we will be reunited with our bikes.

Up early on Monday and after packing up and haggling with the taxi driver off we set to the warehouse for our beloved bikes.We met some very helpfully people there and after paying the import tax, the two crates were dropped out the front of the warehouse and it was time to unpack. A child at Christmas is the only thing we could be compared to. Once the bikes were un crated, we fired them up. All that was left was to pack our gear and hit the road. The heat was unbearable, close to 30 degrees. I couldn't imagine putting on riding gear, but after 2hrs of packing and wonder why we had so much stuff we were on the road.

My Christ was it a shock, we filled up with gas and onto the 401 highway heading east for Montreal.
This was a baptism of fire, 6 lane highways with massive Mack trucks at every pass. The only way was to drive fast and get the hell away from them. Kill or be killed. Once out of Toronto it settled down and we started to find our rhythm. We turn off for Belleville and Tweed as Paddy knew a spot up toward the Ottawa river, called Beachberg and we would be able to camp and get the hell out of the city and into the wilderness. The riding was amazing, open highways, spectacular scenery and the sun on our backs. We pitched the tent, spoke to some locals guys who advised that the raccoons were bastards and would steel your wallet if they got the chance. Lock up all food and watch for Bears. Great news!!. I spent the whole night sweating as much about the heat as the bloody chance of bears. It will be a long trip with little sleep if this keeps up. I passed out around 1am only to wake every two hours until the rain kicked in about 5am. I prayed it would only be a shower but in true Canadian fashion they don't do things by half's. It's absolutely pissed. I woke Paddy at 8am and said let make like a tree and leave. Now for those who don't know, the juggling match that ensued was ridiculous. Packing up, trying to stay dry, and get on the road was a nightmare. Wet gear is no fun. The weather cleared slightly and we thought things had moved in our favour. After some breakfast with two paramedics we set off for Montreal. Only to have the heavens open and completely piss for the rest of the day. Driving through Ottawa was seat of your pants stuff. So much rain, poor visibility and totally unsure if we are on the right road. Things got very real very quickly. Once your away from the cities the roads settle down and are much more manageable. We arrived in Montreal around 3pm and my gear was wet through. It was miserable but we joked and laughed and made the best of it. It is amazing how it can go from being crazy hot one day and thinking I am going to melt if i have to stop at another traffic light to "oh mother of all that is holy" why has the entire Ottawa river decided to pour down upon us. This is what we have signed up for and in true whim and a prayer fashion it was time for prayers. Our room at the moment looks like a Chinese laundry shop trying to get stuff dry for tomorrow, with the grace of god it will be sunny, if not i am going to sell my bike and buy a boat..........

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Date: June 15, 2012

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Paddy's mum:

Wow you crazy travelers, it sounds amazing, wish i was there! Buckets of rain here too only we dont have motor bikes to escape on.
loads of love, aid xxxxxxxx

 

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