Day 19: St. Thomas to Peacock Point – cycling through England, wild turtles and contaminated water

Distance: 147km

Elevation: 635m

The thunderstorm had thrown over some trees and it had cooled off considerably.

I followed an inland highway and soon found it to be too dangerous because of heavy trucks and no shoulder. So, after two near misses, I turned South and pedaled 20km to the Waterfront Trail which I had been following the last days.

It turned out that I was now following the official Trans Canada Trail. I did not even now that existed.

The wind was even stronger than yesterday and I got a god push forward throughout most of the day. At times Rosinante and I were coasting and still made over 30km/h.

I was cycling through Norfolk County most of the day and it truly felt like being in Norfolk, UK. The townships had names like Port Royal, Dutton, or New Glasgow. The lawns were all properly trimmed, the houses were neat and tidy with little fountains and statues, and even the street signs looked British. It felt a little bizarre.

Susanne had told me that a lot of British settlers had staid here because it reminded them of their home. And truly so. The landscape had meanwhile changed, too. After all the monotony of the last weeks, the road was now winding through little villages and farms and rolling hills turned into sharp declines and inclines. In two occasions I even needed to get off and push Rosinante uphill. It was intense but also truly beautiful.

And in the middle of all this were signs telling drivers to beware of wild turtles. How cute! unfortunately, I did not get to see one yet.

In the afternoon I reached the picturesque little town Port Rowan, directly at the beach of Lake Erie. I stopped and had a Greek salad in a little eatery. When paying, the lady quickly added a tip of 20% for herself. Welcome to a touristy place!

Since I had learned from yesterday, I called up two provincial parks and learned that they were fully booked. However one guy mumbled a hint to try Haldimand Conservation Area which I did. It turned out that they had ample space available. Awesome!

After another 40km through rolling hills I reached the campground by 7pm. I felt exhausted and happy. It turned out that their fresh water was contaminated with bacteria. Maybe this explained the availability of camping spots.

Without further ado, I went through my evening program. I had canned food for dinner. I thought I had bought spaghetti with tomato sauce but it turned out to be just tomato sauce. What a great camper I was! I imagined it to be a rich and thick tomato soup and that worked very well. By the time I had cleaned the dishes, it was pitch black night.

It had gotten cold and I wore long clothes and a warm cap in my sleeping bag. By 9:30pm I was falling asleep listening to the waves of Lake Erie clashing on the shore. Maybe it was also the noise of a nearby ironworks plant – who knows …

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