The Parry Sound and Prince Edward Island tour

Day 1 Thursday July 5th:

3 friends and I left Leesburg Virginia to attend the Parry Sound Sport bike Rally and then planned to ride to Prince Edward Island and Cape Breton during the following week. The plan for the first day was to make it across the border into Canada so we would have only a few hours to ride on Friday to make it to Parry Sound. The ride up was mostly on entertaining two lane roads. While it had rained hard on the 4th I had the highest hopes for blue skies and warm weather so I didn't bother bringing any rain gear with me. Needless to say we got caught in a downpour in New York, which soaked me through and through. At this point the guys decided to pull off the road as they where having trouble seeing but I saw a patch of blue sky ahead so I just kept on going. Luckily they caught up to me pretty quickly as I was focused on getting out from under the rain storm that I ignored the road signs and was about to head off in the wrong direction. Other then Lance getting pushed around by a tractor-trailer in West Virginia the ride was uneventful and we reached Niagara Falls in good spirits.Day 1 Pictures

Day 2 Friday July 6th:

The riding on this day consisted led us briefly through Toronto where Craig lost his disposable camera while trying to take pictures at 70+ mph. It was pretty damn funny but I don't think Craig saw the humor in it at the time. We reached Parry Sound early in the afternoon where we meet up with Canada Bob who the guys had met at last years rally. Once we where registered we dropped our stuff off at the campsite and wandered around checking out the various sites.Day 2 Pictures

Day 3 Saturday July 7th:

Saturday is the big day at the rally with a morning poker run, radar runs at the airstrip in the afternoon, and the main attraction, which is the Thunder Ride through Parry Sound in the early evening. Having had the Regulator/Rectifier die on my VFR during the MD20/20 endurance rally I had installed an amperage/voltage meter on my bike to keep track of my electrical system. My voltage had been slowly dropping during the previous two days so I decided to skip the poker run and went and bought a spare battery and wandered around the town. The Thunder Ride consists of 1,500+ sport bikes making as much noise and acting as squidly as they desire all to the encouragement of the town's people. It's hard to describe the experience but it was an incredible rush.Day 3 Pictures

Day 4 Sunday July 8th:

This was to be the first of two long days on the slab to get us to the east coast of Canada as quickly as possible. The day started well with a brisk ride through some beautiful countryside but we where soon on the super slab. The plan was to get to Montreal so that Lance could meet up with a lady friend who lives in that fair city. Going down the highway at high rates of speed for hours on end basically sucked and everyone seemed to be a bit grumpy by the end of the day. After returning from dinner I also managed to drop my bike when the side stand sank into the soft earth as I was getting off the bike. Fortunately the ground was soft and no damage was done. That night we camped outside of Montreal and almost got washed away in the middle of the night by a huge thunderstorm that sounded like God was pounding rocks just outside the tent.Day 4 Pictures

Day 5 Monday July 9th:

Leaving Montreal we continued east around Maine to Frederickton, New Brunswick. Once again we spent the whole day on the slab at super legal speeds and basically only stopped for gas. After the previous nights pounding we decided that discretion was the better part of valor and stayed in a motel for the night.Day 5 Pictures

Day 6 Tuesday July 10th:

We spent Tuesday morning cruising about Frederickton checking out Lance's old stomping grounds before heading to the coast and across the 9-mile long Confederation Bridge to Prince Edward Island. On PEI we stayed at Lance's parents house who where very gracious in putting us up for the night as well as washing and drying all of our things which had gotten soaked while we where camping outside of Montreal. In many ways this was the hardest day of the trip even though we covered relatively few miles comparing to the previous two days and that evening Craig stated that he planned on splitting from the group in morning. After talking between us it was agreed that we where doing way to much high speed traveling and not nearly enough goofing off so we cancelled our plans to go to Cape Breton in order to giver ourselves more time to enjoy the rest of trip. Nonetheless Craig couldn't be convinced and left by him self the following morning. Day 6 Pictures

Day 7 Wednesday July 11th:

This was the slowest day of the trip and in many ways one of the most enjoyable. We spent most of the morning cruising about PEI taking pictures and enjoying the sights before catching the ferry to Nova Scotia. In Nova Scotia we rode along the Sunrise Trail before making to Alma along the Bay of Fundy. When we got to the Bay of Fundy it started raining in great buckets so we stopped at a motel where two other motorcycles where already staying. It turned out that these bikes where owned by a couple of complete nut jobs so we hit it off immediately. I had taken a whole roll of pictures that day but unfortunately that roll got destroyed while walking about the sea floor in the wee hours of the morning.Day 7 Pictures

Day 8 Thursday July 12th:

Getting started late in the day we split from John and Ed as they wanted to get breakfast and I wanted to get real by god American cigarettes. So with swollen heads we left Alma and made our way to the border at St Stephen. Once in Maine we made our way down route 9 to route 2 through more wonderful countryside. Near the end of the day we stopped at a gas station near the New Hampshire border only to have John and Ed show up just a few minutes after us. Even taking a wandering route without any plans they still managed to get ahead of us and then chased us down. We where hoping to camp again that night but as we crossed into New Hampshire the temperature dropped about 20 degrees and the sky was looking ominous so we spent the evening at a motel doing our best porch monkey imitations.Day 8 Pictures

Day 9 Friday July 13th:

This day turned out to be both the longest and best riding day of the trip. We made our way across New Hampshire to Vermont at a spirited clip only stopping to talk to some of the locals for a few minutes. Once in Vermont we took route 14 to 107 to 100. These where definitely the best roads of the trip and we maintained about 80mph the whole time without seeing a single police officer in the whole state of Vermont. Once we reached the southern end of Vermont we headed west into New York in order to avoid Massachusetts which had made it clear to me that they didn't appreciate my kind amongst their over taxed under armed citizenry. At this point Cory and I decided to continue on with John and Ed who where heading to Ed's house in Pennsylvania as we both wanted to be back home on Saturday. Lance on the other hand still had plenty of vacation time and so decided to head east into Connecticut to visit a friend. We proceeded down more good two lane roads in New York until we reached the tri state area where traffic starting getting heavy and we passed the scene of a very recent accident in which an SUV managed to roll itself at an intersection crushing the front of the passenger compartment almost completely flat. Once in Pennsylvania Ed took is through some parks at twice the posted speed limits which had me convinced that he must know all the police in this area by their first names. We arrived at Ed's home a bit before 9pm and promptly headed to a local brewpub for some fine beers and food before finally calling it a night around 3 am. Day 9 Pictures

Day 10 Saturday July 14th:

Saturday dawned bright and painful as something got in my left eye during the previous days riding causing my left eyeball to glow a bright red and feel like someone had replaced it with a hot coal. John left first to head back to Ohio and Cory and I left about an hour later for the last leg to Leesburg. It only took us a few hours to get back to Leesburg and we arrived safe and sound at about 3pm. This was the first long trip that I've taken with a group and it was very educational. While the hanging out part was always fun the riding often had me gnashing my teeth particularly in the early days. Meeting up with John and Ed was probably the single best thing that happened on the trip and I heartily ascribe to the touring philosophy of minimal planning and maximum fun.Day 10 Pictures


Till next time, Happy Trails.