We did it!
3 months, 8,000 km and sensory overload beyond belief… The tour arrived to Saint John’s early Monday afternoon. The ferry ride to Newfoundland was quite a production. The tour first left camp, travelled through the quaint town of Baddeck, Nova Scotia and met at the oddly named “Lick-a-chick” fried chicken shack for a last meal in Nova Scotia. The tour vans arrived several hours early for ferry loading and as riders showed up, riders showered up and some hit the bar. We even had a genuine Newfie band playing outside the ferry terminal to get people in the mood for what was to come. Everyone settled into their overnight berths and soon enough, we were in Newfoundland!
Off the ferry, the cloudy skies and foreign lands gave the perfect atmosphere for the end of our tour. It really did feel like we’ve travelled to the end of the earth. To some, the rocky shores seemed like the Scottish highlands and as we travelled inland, the terrain seemed like Alaska. With hardly any traffic in the morning and as the skies opened up, it was one of the best morning rides we’ve had all tour.
In the afternoon, riders arrived to one last camp and a cooler full of Jocky Club and Black Horse beer. Most unfortunately, we also had one last amazing Chef Jon meal. We were served bouillabaisse, corn, and of course a couple of pies for dessert. Big props to Jon for the most amazing food anyone could ask for while on the road. All riders would undoubtedly agree that Jon’s cooking was one of the best aspects of the tour. Bribes were offered to kidnap Jon and make him a personal chef.
Riders also received commemorative tour jerseys the night before Saint John’s for our convoy. This tour we sported a light blue and orange color way. The states and provinces listed on the sleeve remind us all of the hard work and experiences from the past three months.
Our hotel was located halfway up the famous Signal Hill with an amazing view overlooking Saint John’s harbor. Here we had Prosecco, hors d’oeuvres and a little James Brown playing when everyone arrived! A local reporter was there as well and the tour was featured in the following day’s newspaper with a great photo of the father and son duo, Jim and Craig Pearce.
On behalf of everyone, I would like to express a big thank you to Paul McManus for confidently directing the tour through each day of the tour. Most of all, thank you to each and every rider, both full and sectional individuals that made the tour what it was. We had a great group of people throughout the entire journey and we all benefited greatly with everyone’s presence. As Canadian rider Walli Pagniello said, “I just put one pedal in front of the other.” With a little motivation, a great group of people and that kind of positive attitude, crossing a continent by bicycle is possible. Thank you!