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Here goes nothing

As I mentioned at the end of my last post nearly two years ago, my next long-distance cycling goal is a bike trip to Nova Scotia. And while I don’t feel remotely ready for it, my plan is to leave tomorrow morning.

So let’s rewind a bit here. Obviously the pandemic took a mental and emotional toll on everyone and a physical toll on many people. In my case, I stayed pretty active in Montana, then did the ride across Upstate NY in September 2020, and spent December of that year in Santa Fe doing a lot of hiking and biking. But once I got back to Massachusetts around New Year’s 2021, most indoor activities were either closed or severely restricted and the weather prevented most outdoor activities. So I began a slow descent into sitting at home, gaining weight and getting into worse shape. Even with getting vaccinated in March 2021 and some fun travel that summer that included checking out the bike share systems of San Francisco and New York City and hiking national parks in Colorado, I never really managed to shed the extra weight or feel like I was in as good shape as I’d been.

Then I managed to pick up the delta variant on the aforementioned San Francisco trip. Luckily I got a very mild case thanks to being vaccinated, and my first day out of quarantine I went down to Cape Cod and biked 40 miles. While Nova Scotia wasn’t in the cards with what remained of last summer, getting back to biking longer distances did make me want to do this trip all the more.

Meanwhile, thanks to the immunity from just having had covid, I decided to take a trip to London last fall and discovered they have a pretty good bike share program. Here’s a totally gratuitous selfie of me biking across the Chelsea Bridge.

I also got to bike around some parts of London that most tourists don’t go to in order to explore small breweries tucked into archways under train tracks.

Fast forwarding though, job’s not working out (most of my team had already quit) so I decided I should also quit and try to get back into shape to do this Nova Scotia ride before taking on a new job. . Obviously it won’t be as grueling as cross-country, given the shorter distance and lack of mountains, so I didn’t do as much training as 3 years ago, but I did once again bike the 105+ miles from Braintree to Provincetown in a day to make sure I can still handle a century!

So that’s where things are at. My plan is to follow the Maine coast to the easternmost border crossing from Lubec to Campobello Island. From there it’s two ferry rides to the Canadian mainland. Then follow the New Brunswick coast to Moncton and cut east across the peninsula to catch the shuttle across the Confederation Bridge to Prince Edward Island. After spending a couple of days on PEI I’ll take the ferry to Caribou, NS then head south to Halifax and west to Yarmouth to get the ferry back to Maine. All told this should be somewhere between 2-3 weeks if all goes well.

Overall I’m also going to be a bit less ambitious than on the cross-country ride and shoot for 70-80 miles/day instead of 80-100. Of course, I’m sure a century ride or two will still find their way into my itinerary.

Well, thanks for reading so far! I’m heading out in the morning and I’ll try to keep this updated as best I can!

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  1. Hi Ben,

    Great to see you’re still cycling

    Looking forward to your next post



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