Stanley Park to Horseshoe Bay (290m ele, 20 km), very hilly; Departure Bay to Wildwood (150m ele, 20km) 60 km total.
An impressive cast of bikers, three of us (including me) who had never cycled longer distances or with panniers. Don’t pack so much food next time, you’ll really feel it on the uphills.
Gave up on the last 20 km leg on return, so the three of us took the 257 back to Vancouver. No shame; we had all reached our limit. Amazed we made it to Wildwood at all. Wildwood=sustainable forest tour/camp grounds.
Slept in a tent by myself (so lonely), made a campfire, and ate campfire cooked meals for the first time. I guess I finally got the stereotypical camping experience, but it was a bit civilized to me. We cycled paved roads, and we were just a few hundred metres from a road in the city of Ladysmith near Nanaimo. Never felt like I got “off the grid”, although it was an extremely tough physical challenge to me.
Slept so badly because I was tired I felt paranoid and had pretty bad anxiety later into the night, almost anxiety attack, but that’s life. It was worth it.
No one makes you cycle like a leader with a fast pace and people on your heels and a fear of being left behind. Lost the group at one point because they disappeared around a turn.
We could all be better than ourselves.