Bushes and bikes. . . and bears maybe.

Bike riding has been the thing lately and we just finished biking along a part of the TransCanada Trail. It turned out to be a fairly decent, abet long, woodsy ride and, thank heavens—flat one.

The scenery was freaking impressive—with the Cowichan River on one side and deep forests rising into mountains on the other. Cowichan River is one of those rivers which refuses to be the same for long. One moment it is boiling and spraying through narrow gorges only to disappear from view behind a cluster of thick cedars and then reappear in long and wide sweeping curves. Turn a corner and it is skinny-ing down into bubbling cauldrons of frothy water pushing over the edges of worn stone to dump itself into deep green pools with swirling edges.

And that’s only one side of the show along the trail!

As we travelled over wooden bridges, creek-water culverts and skidded our way through giant muck puddles we were also awed by the deep forest on the other side. The filtering of sunlight was surreal enough to feel like we were peddling through the darkened aisles in a museum. Gawking as staged backlighting tricked its way through moss-draped trees to reach and highlight life on the forest floor. I half expected to see stuffed animals staged; their glassy eyes peering back at us.

A much better scenario than the live ones I was silently keeping a close ear out for. After all, it is the time of year when bears are emerging, dozy, cranky and hungry.

Three long hours after starting out, we made it back to the truck. Legs wobbly, throats parched and Man-Wonder standing to peddle the last third of the way because of his old hard bike seat and even older tender skin!

I didn’t have the heart to tell him I was planning a return trip real soon.

You see, three times I heard the siren call, and saw three thick vibrant groves of fresh stinging nettles scattered just beyond the edges of the trail. And three times I mentally smacked myself for not throwing gloves, bags and secateurs into a backpack.

Oh, yeah, we are going back as soon as Man-Wonder heals up.

Maybe even before he’s completely toughened up because I’ve been thinking about those snuffles and thrashes I thought I heard a couple of times and . . .

. . . Think about it—tender means slower on the bike and, well, it’d be easy for me to zip past him . . .

Survival of the fittest  fastest—right?


bear chase

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