Shocking …

93 km, 6.5 hours

We actually managed to get off today at a reasonable time (for us anyways), slightly before 10am (even after a delicious breakfast and the requisite photos – this time by Morris and Elaine, the proprietors of the Step Aside B&B). Unfortunately, our early departure didn’t last long. After about 500 m we noticed strange noises coming from Scott’s bike. After further inspection we noticed that his rear shock was compressed (Becky’s was extended a full inch longer than Scott’s). With the rear shock compressed the rear rack was up against the fender and putting pressure on the rear tire.

Fortunately, Scott had commissioned an emergency shock replacement from his Dad – a piece of aluminum with UHMW polyethylene bushings which has the same dimensions as the shock. It is just rigid aluminum, so doesn’t provide the absorbency of a shock, but it does make the bike ride-able. It does mean that Scott cannot go speeding down hills at 60+km/hr because he (and the frame) feel every bump in the road.

So, after a half hour of mucking around, we were back on the road again. The forecast had called for rain, but it didn’t materialize. The day was grey and a little cool, but not wet – pretty much a perfect day for cycling.

It did not take long for us to discover that the flats we enjoyed yesterday were not to be repeated today. Highway 102 follows the west side of the Saint John River, which is rather picturesque, but not at all flat.

On several occasions today and yesterday we saw platforms on the top of telephone poles with large bird nests. In other parts of the world, these would be stork nests, but we didn’t think storks were common here. At one stop, Becky asked about the nests – apparently they are Osprey nests.

By the end of the day Becky was feeling exceptionally exhausted. It was a long day riding, Becky was surprised to find just how sore her muscles were and how tired she was. Fortunately, we have planned to take a day off in Saint John tomorrow. With the broken shock, we may need to also spend Monday night in Saint John so that we can visit a bike shop on Monday morning. Unfortunately the Monday ferry options are 9 am and 11 pm; neither of which is ideal. Since we have the extra time, we’ll likely adjust the schedule and aim for the Tuesday 12:15 ferry.

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