Today was a long day, as we really needed to get closer to Rimouski. Our hope was to make it to Riviere-du-Loup, but there was just no way I could push another 35 km. I was tired at 70km and ready to stop, but there were no campgrounds. In the end, I’m glad we pushed and got here, as it puts us in much better shape to get to Rimouski without needing to rush too much (only 120km to Rimouski and 2 days). It is really difficult to work on “slowing down” when you have to get someplace in time for a ferry reservation!
As we rode today, the terrain changed. It is definitely getting hillier. We avoided the Route Verte in several places and stuck to the much flatter 132. Hills that have a grade over 10% can be a really challenge on our bikes, so we much prefer to avoid them if we can. The 132 is rather quiet in this area, so it is a nice more direct route.
The St. Laurence is tidal here, and you can smell the ocean. Between the ocean smells, the every green trees, and the hills in the background, it reminds me of home (northern BC), only at home the hills are mountains with snow on top.
The campground is on a knoll between the highway and the St. Laurence. Fortunately, our campsite is on the highway side of the hill, and not down or up too much of a hill! It is a beautiful walk through the woods to get to the washrooms and showers.
I realized today that if we hang out our cotton stuff (which is mostly my pajamas) and our sleeping bag liners they smell much better and need to be laundered less frequently. Since they don’t really get dirty, this is convenient as we can’t go laundry that often. We will start hanging them out in the morning while we have breakfast and in the evening while we have dinner.
A corollary to this is that when we setup the line, we also have a place to hang our food. Hanging the food rather than keeping it in the vestibule of the tent allows us both to sleep better at night. I’ve also taken the precaution of ensure that all food is in at least one zip lock bag, so there should be few if any smells from the bags. This seems to be enough to keep away raccoons, skunks, and squirrels, so far anyways.
1 thought on “Oh the scent of the ocean!”
Good call hanging your food: If the local wild animals are habituated to human presence, they may expect you to be carrying food and even a Zip-Loc bag may not deter them. While backpacking on a heavily-traveled trail in Kananaskis Country last weekend, we took a break at a point of interest. Before long several ground squirrels appeared and started nosing around our packs, even though all our food was in Zip-Loc bags. While we kept a close eye on the situation, another group left their packs unattended while they wandered around taking photos; in a matter of minutes one of the squirrels had chewed a hole clean through one of their packs!