Grand Bend to Goderich, Ontario
Before departing from Grand Bend, I took a look at the beach:
This was the worst day yet. I guess you have to expect wind around theGreat Lakes. Winds out of the north absolutely stopped me in my tracks.At one point I found myself struggling to go 6 mph into the wind. The windwas so bad that I found myself stopping frequently to catch my breath.
In addition to fighting the forces of nature, I had to cope with heavytraffic on a shoulderless road. The nice 18" shoulder in Grand Bendvanished only a couple of miles north. At St. Joseph, I had experiencedenough traffic for a while. I stopped at a convenience store and ate a Mr.Big candy bar. I asked the proprietor if there were any backroad alternativesto Hwy. 21. He told me to head inland to the second road. About 1.5 milesinland, sure enough there was a nice paved farm road. There was some traffic,but it was very light and the ride was pleasant, albeit still windy. Theroad reminded me of the farm roads in Michigan.
I could not avoid the wind. I did not depart Grand Bend until aroundnoon. When I stopped for lunch at Bayfield my cyclocomputer said I was averagingonly 8.6 mph. Bayfield is located on a bluff and the view of Lake Huronand the local small boat harbor were quite picturesque.
The town seemed invaded by Harley Davidsons. A large motorcycle groupdescended on Bayfield for lunch and then departed in a roar double file.
Other than the blast of motorcycles, Bayfield is quite a nice old townwith some interesting old buildings.
While I was eating, the sky darkened and it looked like a storm was imminent.The good news was that the wind calmed a bit. The bad news was that therewas no alternative to Hwy 21 and NO shoulders.
It dropped to about 54° F and I geared up to my big ring and pouredon everything I had, hoping to make some decent progress. I strive for 74miles per day, but some days just fall short. I got to Goderich before 6:00PM. but my average of only 9 mph caused me to call it a day.
I managed to find a laundromat (Goderich Laundromat), motel (Maple LeafMotel) and a fabulous restaurant (Robindales) all within one block