After waking up at 7:00am, we finally departed my place at a leisurely 9:00am.

Here's a shot of myself and my bike in my driveway. I quickly realized that my setup kinda sucked because the weight was all placed at the rear of my bike. This made the front/steering very light and unstable... especially on the slopes. Next time, I'll use a handlebar bag instead of a rackpack to help balance the bike.

The weather was overcast and a little cool. Perfect for cycling !

After riding for 5 minutes, we gracefully exited the city limits and were on our way.


Here's a view of the road we took for the first 21km. This is Springbank Rd which eventually turns into Old Banff Coach Rd as you head east. What you can't see is the hilly terrain between my place and this point. Luckily, it was mostly downhill up to here.


Here's another shot of the intersection. We would eventually turn right onto Hwy 22 and then exit onto Hwy 1 aka the Trans Canada Highway. I did consider riding through Cochrane and taking the 1A to Canmore but I figured that it'd add at least 15km to our already long first day.

Dave's bike can be seen to the right of mine. As you can see, he's got the drybag paniers... which would come in really handy later in the day.


Here's a view of Hwy 1 as it makes its way towards the west. Being just meters away from cars, SUVs and tractor trailers moving at 120km/h was a little nerve wrecking but at least we were wearing helmets.

I found it interesting how we saw SO many bungee cords along the shoulders of the highways. I think I must have counted at least 30 bungee cords during this trip. Many looked to be in good condition but I was too busy pedalling to bother picking one up.


Shortly after the Sibbald Creek exit (Hwy 68), we encountered our first major climb of the trip. It wasn't that bad but we decided to pull off into a small detour and grab some lunch before we got soaked by an obvious storm up ahead.

Our lunch for the day was a wicked tuna sandwich which Dave whipped up early in the morning. Who knew that sliced olives would go great with tuna ?

We managed to bump into an individual and his son at this rest stop who were also on their way to Canmore by bicycle. The father claimed that we were standing on the highest point of the Trans Canada highway in Canada but I had my doubts. I've since found out that the highest point is in fact the Kicking Horse Pass... which we would climb 4 days later.


The weather was really weird this day. After getting drenched just past the rest stop, we suddenly encountered relatively clear skies.

Since we were ahead of schedule, we took a 15 min break at another pullout which gave us a clear view of Mt. Yamnuksa. I really needed this break since I was feeling some major stiffness in my upper legs. I realized later on that it was being caused by a seatpost which was sliding down the seat tube of my bike. Unfortunately, my legs never really recovered during the day.

Here's a shot to the west as we approach the Kananaskis Hwy 40 exit. Mount McGillvary can be seen in the distance.


Here's Dave as he quickly dissapears around the corner towards Heart Mountain.

Due to some nasty looking clouds ahead of us, we decided to take a short break under the bridge just before Lac des Arcs until the clouds passed on by.

While we were waiting under the bridge, a couple of cars gave us a few honks from their horn. I thought they meant, "Get moving you wimpy lazy assed cyclists !" but I eventually learned that they were honks of encouragement. These friendly honks would really help me later in the trip as I started up some nasty mountain passes.


Here's a view of the passing Storm cloud as we start to approach Dead Mans Flats. The 3 Sisters start to get bigger and bigger by the minute.

At Dead Mans Flats, I grabbed a Powerade while Dave grabbed some Tab energy drink. I never knew that Tab was still around ! Furthermore, how can a low calorie diet drink provide energy ? Hmm...


Finally ! Canmore never looked so good !


Here's Dave passing the Bow River.

Our first stay would be at my friends place in downtown Canmore. I initially planned on staying at the ACC Clubhouse but I found out that it was completely booked when I called 6 weeks prior to my departure.

It turned out to be a good thing since my friends Makoto and Emi were excellent hosts and great cooks ! After a huge dinner of (Korean BBQ) Beef and a garden grown salad, Dave and I quickly hit the sack.