My phone alarm blared out at 4:50 am this morning.
I had packed my bag the night before with everything I was taking on the trip, so getting out the door was pretty quick. Hop in the shower, get dressed, grab my stuff, out and on the road by 5:00 am. (Big thanks to my wife Amanda for waking up so early to drop me off at the airport!)
To say that I was a bit nervous as I waited in the security line was an understatement. There were three other flights all leaving the San Luis Obispo airport at the same time. If you’ve never been there before, it’s a very tiny airport with a single terminal. So, that sort of volume can be pretty chaotic. Luckily I made it through on time (with 10 minutes to spare) and no flight delays.
I flew from San Luis Obispo to San Francisco, then on to the Victoria airport (located in Sidney on Vancouver Island). It was a bit odd being on the plane, with just a single carry-on. This single duffel bag contained every possession available to me for the next month or so. That feeling especially hit me when I landed at the airport and stepped out up to the street. After flying to Canada on a one-way ticket, I was very far away from home, on my own, with only what I had on me. The only way I was going to get back home was to get on my bike and start pedaling.
Getting Into Canada
From the airport, I headed over to Russ Hay’s - a local bike shop very close by. When I initially planned the trip, I had contacted a bike shop in my area (Trinity Cyclery) and they helped me pack and ship my bike ahead of me to Russ Hay’s. Man, they made it easy. My bike was ready to go, all put together, and everything checked out. I didn’t have to worry about it being lost or damaged by the airline - well worth it.
By the time I picked up my bike, it was late in the afternoon. I rearranged all my items from the duffel bag into panniers on the bike, got my GoPro set up, and rode about 5 miles or so into Saanichton to call it a day. Hopefully, I’ll get some good rest tonight and be ready to hit the road in the morning.
The Plan Ahead
My plan is to ramp things up slowly. Tomorrow will be about 35 miles or so to get into the swing of things, and from there, my plan is to get up to about 50 miles per day so that I’ve got a decent pace going, but not kill myself. I’ll still be working remotely on this trip, so the plan is to cycle in the mornings, work in the afternoon/evenings, update the blog, and repeat until I make it to the border.
I’m so excited to kick off this adventure, and I can’t wait to see what happens :)