Friday, August 17, 2012

Sleeping With a Nightlight

I had great plans of leaving Roberts Creek bright and early (not dark and early like yesterday), but I took some time to do some things that I would have ordinarily done the night before (I arrived so late and was plum exhausted!). One thing I did was wash out my bike shorts from yesterday. They dried nicely on the back of the bike.

I ended up getting on the road at 8:20. After finally getting the previous blog posted, I was finally on the road for good by 10:15. I really needed to catch the 3:10 ferry to Saltery Bay from Earl's Cove. You might think that should be no problem. I wasn't too worried either, except the road from Sechelt to Earl's Cove was only up and down--and more up than down. There was no flat. And the ups were mostly Super Granny ups. And yet, I made it to Earl's Cove with about 45 minutes to spare! I did stop at one point at a liquor store and also went in to the bar next door. Now, for those of you who know me, I know you are thinking, "Since when did Colleen start drinking?". Actually, I bought a bottle of Powerade at the liquor store, and the nice bartender in the bar filled my water bottle with ice and cold water. See, I haven't taken up boozing on the bike!

Boat ride #4 to Saltery Bay was very nice. The indoor seating place was air conditioned. I took my shoes and socks off and put my burning hot feet on the cool metal of the seat back in front of me. I took a few photos, but mostly I just sat in the nice cool air.

Upon docking, as usual, I was allowed off first. Then it becomes a race to get to the top of the ferry dock ramp before the motorcycles and then cars start coming. And it is always a steep hill. I got up to the hwy just as the cars started going past me. Fortunately, there was a nice shoulder. Then the long, slow, arduous climb began. Saltery Bay Provincial Park was just up the road. That is where the Bicycling the Pacific Coast book recommends to stay. I didn't want to stay there because I would have 19 miles to go in the next morning to get to Powell River and catch the 8:10 ferry. I wasn't up for another o' dark hundred ride. My plan was to get to an RV park in Myrtle Point, about 6 miles from Powell River. I figured that would be doable. Well, I never found the so called RV park that allowed tents. There was a "resort" with cabins, but no tenting. The person there told me there was camping near the ferry terminal in Powell River. Okay, fine, I'll go all the way to Powell River.

I got to the ferry terminal, but didn't see anything resembling a camping place. I stopped in at the harbor office and asked a nice young man if there was camping nearby. He directed me to Willingdon Beach Campground. I found the campground without any problems. I'm barely 10 minutes ride from the ferry! Much nicer.

This campground is a private campground (thus, in order to make more money, the campsites are very close together--but, it only cost me $18, plus a Looney for the shower). It is gated (but Betsy can fit around the gate easily) and I have a key for the restroom building--which is shockingly close to my campsite! The only bad thing is that there is a streetlight that is lighting up my campsite. It's not often I have a nightlight when I'm in my tent! I'm certainly tired enough that I'm sure it won't bother me.

As I was walking over to the restroom to brush my teeth (key in hand), I noticed there was still a bit of a sunset happening (I was too hungry to go watch the sun set earlier). I walked down a trail to the beach. Not only was the sky beautiful, but there was a heron standing on a rock. I moved in closer to get a nice silhouette photo. A perfect end to a long day!

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