Bike Style Life

Days Seven and Eight: Victoria, BC to Friday Harbor

 

My gosh, Victoria has so much fresh kermit! AKA new bike infrastructure with bright green paint. I rode in protected bike lanes on Fort Street, Antiques Row. Great use of occasional concrete pads for both traffic calming and bike parking too.

The rain we’d seen in the forecast didn’t materialize and the breezy sunshine made for glorious noodling around. Scored a couple more apples in the antique shops for my collection, too. After dinner we took in “Solo” at the Capitol 6 Cinemas, then walked back to our AirBnB to get some sleep. The British Columbia Legislative Building outlined by lights made a striking image in the darkness.

Friday morning we ate a quick breakfast from supplies provided by our hosts before getting on the road. We rolled slowly along the waterfront and made a stop at a Bike to Work Day Energizer Station, then headed across the Johnson Bridge.

The Galloping Goose Trail and bike lanes took us past dozens of bike commuters and over a couple more bridges before we stopped at a second Energizer Station. We stopped to grab a granola bar and I got to talk a bit of policy with Corey Burger, a board member of Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition I first met at the Washington Bike Summit in 2014.

We enjoyed the comfortable connection start to finish from Victoria to Sidney. The Galloping Goose Trail connects to the Lochside Regional Trail. Much of it is paved and separated, some is hard-packed dirt that worked fine for our road tires, some sections make use of a street for a while. We were on some streets that resembled Seattle’s neighborhood greenways, with raised speed tables the width of the road and very low traffic volumes, and one stretch that ran alongside the highway for a bit.

This is a rail-trail so we benefited from the very flat route and a bit of a a tailwind, sailing over 17 miles in an hour and 35 minutes. We didn’t stop at Mattick Farm, one of the attractions I’d learned about from the Average Joe Cyclist blog post on this trail. We might have had time for a brief stop but didn’t want to risk missing the single ferry departure of the day.

The day wasn’t foggy — this was just what happened after carrying the phone in the back pocket of my Nuu-Muu the whole way.

As it was, we got to Sidney with plenty of time to enjoy a second breakfast at Bevan Bistro and chat with a friendly Canadian woman who told us how much she likes Washington State ferry service before we headed to the landing. Several other riders waited in line and we talked routes with another couple who had been on an itinerary very similar to ours.

The ferry crossing was smooth and pleasant (and may possibly have involved a brief nap on Hubs’s shoulder), lasting just over 90 minutes. The highlight of the trip: The pilot came on the PA system to tell us we had a chance of spotting orcas off the starboard side. Sure enough, first one and then two popped into sight a few times for us to enjoy.

The Customs bit was even shorter than when we crossed into Canada — someone looked at our passport when we bought our tickets and after we’d landed an official looked at them again, asked if we had anything to declare (which we didn’t), and that was it.

With a quick stop at Island Wine Company in Cannery Landing right by the ferry dock to get some beverages for our hosts, we were just minutes from our stay with my sister and her boyfriend. Found out when we got here that a big art tour is taking place this weekend so that may take up some of our time. A delicious Thai dinner at Golden Triangle in downtown Friday Harbor brought the day to a pleasant and filling close.

Distance: 19 miles today, just 3.8 yesterday

Total mileage to date:

Bike: 206.15 miles

Ferry: 61.2 miles

Wildlife: Orcas!

Yesterday: Hanging out in Victoria after getting there the day before from Lake Crescent

Tomorrow: Relaxing in Friday Harbor

Our route on Ride with GPS

The Whole Trip

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