Day 12 | July 9 | Sunwapta Pass to Lake Louise | 130 km

It’s only 4C when I get up this morning, hardly a good day to go biking. It’s easy to forget that it’s July from this vantage point. It’ll be nice to get back to a lower altitude where the weather is more likely to be bike-friendly.

A light rain is a familiar way to start the day. I’m already freezing cold when I leave camp at 7:30, but at least the temperature is above zero or we’d have to think about black ice too.

Twenty minutes later I start a 9 km descent which is quite steep in spots. Normally I love going downhill, but on a wet road with tight turns, I have to keep my hands on the cold metal brake levers, no matter how uncomfortable it gets. Crashing at 50 km/h would be much, much worse.

The wet roads continue all the way to our first food stop at 48 km. From there, it is mostly flat or downhill until Bow Pass, a steep 7 km climb that seems to last forever.

I’m plodding along in my smallest gear all the way to the summit, picking small landmarks along the way to make my progress seem more real. Drivers offer friendly honks of support as they pass by.

Just ahead of me are Mike, Fred, Jim and Charles. We pull in to Bow Glacier for a quick break a few minutes later at 88 km.

The last 35 km into camp are fast and mostly downhill. About 5 km from the end I hear another car horn, this time from my brother Dave driving in the other direction. We meet up at the campsite a little later and join the rest of the Calgary clan at Lake Louise.

Lake Louise Campground is unlike any other I’ve seen. It’s enclosed with an electric fence to keep the bears away, sort of like a human zoo. The temperature is supposed to drop again tonight, but it looks okay for tomorrow. Only two more days from here. The end is in sight.

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