Day 1 – Calgary to Nelson, BC

Distance: 635 kilometres
Temp: Low 8/High 22


We made it successfully. Fiona did especially well on her first long day ride. No mishaps or issues to report for our first day.

The start was a bit of a concern as the temperature in Calgary was only 8 degrees, cloudy and threatened rain. It was a very chilly ride until we got almost to Blairmore and finally warmed up to about 20 degrees around Cranbrook.

We met up with our group of fellow VFR riders here in Nelson. A smaller group this year but a great group nonetheless. Fiona will be taking the day off to explore Nelson and I’ll be out riding with the fellers on there bikes.

Tomorrow we’ll head off west towards Merritt, BC.


The ride form Calgary to Nelson was my longest ride ever, and in spite of the chilly start (it was only 9C when we left the city Friday morning) it turned out to be a great day for a “spin.” The scenery along the way was fabulous – even the foggy rainy stuff near Nanton (which didn’t really look like Alberta at all). Once we warmed up, it was much easier to enjoy things (for me, anyway). We stopped for plenty of rests to stretch our legs along the way, and I finally got a taste of what Mike is always telling me about – the inevitable conversation between riders that strats with “Hey, nice bike,” and covers geography, weather, and all manner of subjects.

We didn’t end up taking the ferry into Nelson, instead choosing to ride through the pass from Creston. The road is less twisty, but still scenic, and the pictures below were taken at a rest area at the top of the pass. It’s a beautiful road. Still, I think we were both pretty happy to see Nelson and find a cold beer in the pub of the New Grand Hotel. After our less-than-summery start to the day, it was pretty nice to find some warm weather, too.

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