Day 70/71/72 Southampton > Halifax (Nova Scotia)> Atlantic!

DAY 70 - Checked the route and decided to stay by the Saint John River all the way to Saint John a lot further but the only way through! The heat and the road prompted a change in plan. Not quite so many climbs this way. Amazed to find New Brunswick has sooo many trees and the mountains really do seem to continue right to the coast! Rob starting to regret his Canada suggestion!!! The heat really got to me today. I'm also having to keep out of the saddle going down hill and over bumpy ground coz Stuart can't take any extra weight on his rear wheel. It's like riding a bike with square wheels. I thought it was a frog croaking but it turned out to be Stu! Today is the Canada Day bank holiday and quite refreshing to see absolutely nothing open. It is lovely to think that the day is a family day and they don't need to shop like we do. Anyway yes Charli phsyco really is top dollar Beckam is team USA in any case! Oops! Weather - Hotter than my Ass! Wind - W then E!!!!! Road Kill 1 x Porcupine massive DAY 71 Up with the sun and away we are going to crack the whip and go for it! Down to Saint John not Canada's prettiest town old buildings crowded out by new. After all we are talking docklands here. Lots of shipping and derelict buildings. But no time to stop and stare it was straight over to Nova Scotia today. A 76km crossing. I had a rest then back on Stuart and a great day peddling. Up the coast of Nova Scotia passing through shore lands then farmlands then more trees. Let's not forget the trees. The roads were good but narrow in places. These guys are used to cyclists so a little more compassion given. A great day and all be it still a long way from Halifax but defiantly within striking distance! Weather hot blue blue skies Wind NW Road kill 2 x porcupine 1 x deer 1 x chipmunk 1 x rabbit DAY 72 Absolutely no sleep. Completely pumped up! Sun up And on the road. Actually it was a long time before I saw the sun. The day was foggy and the atmosphere extremely humid. I cycled along feeling good but then a song just came into my head and I couldn't shake it off all day. You know when you have that happen your pretty close to cracking up! It was off course "West Virginia" and I could just picture the gang back home singing away as you did the night I left. Then I have to let you read the comments of Brad because he tells you exactly what happened next! I personally can't remember! A chance meeting. My legs were gone and my heart too full I was lost in emotion and he saw me through. The next thing I knew I was stood in the Atlantic Stuart in my hands! I did this to prove to myself, to my family, to my friends and to cancer sufferers around the world that anything is possible you just got to have faith. Love to you all. Thank you for your help and for making the world a smaller place!

26 comments (Add your own)

1. Sandra Thompson wrote:
Wow! Wow! Wow! Just heard the news from Charley. You've done it! What fantastic fantastic news! You truly are a hero Jo. Looking forward to seeing you back in the UK. Thank God you're off the road now. I was starting to worry how much wildlife there would be left in Canada. I have a sneaking feeling that all that road kill........
Well done Jo. You're amazing!
Love from all the Thompsons xxxx

ps guess we'll be seeing more of you in the Gulf now that Forest is Kuwaiti! Come on you Reds. Allah Akbar!

Wed, July 4, 2012 @ 5:01 PM

2. Brad Crossley - Halifax wrote:
I ran into Jo while on my bike 50km from the Atlantic/Halifax and was impressed with her immediately after a brief couple minute chat! My wife and I took the opportunity afterward to catch up to her and Rob for the trip into and through town to the south end of Halifax and Point Pleasant Park at the mouth of the harbour where it meets the Atlantic. Jo was quite excited and emotional and enjoyed the dip in the cold ocean waters at Black Rock Beach after the long trek cross country. Jo and Rob shared a few quiet moments at the waters edge and called family. This chance meeting on the road outside of Halifax was a gift for me today. Jo is a wonderful, inspirational, and proud lady. I couldn't help but be drawn to her enthusiasm and passion. Quite simply an amazing feat for an oustanding person! Thanks Jo and congratulations once again!

Wed, July 4, 2012 @ 8:05 PM

3. The Parkers wrote:
Fantastic Jo -
What an amazing achievement, I bet that felt like the best swim you've ever ever had, but please don't attempt to swim home now!
Enjoy your last few days and we're all looking forward to seeing you both home safely soon.
lots of love Jackie, Quintin, Kate, Jo.... xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 2:45 AM

4. Marmoff Champ!! wrote:
Jo how fantastic to have completed your challenge! Looking forward to seeing you back safe and sound!!
What are your plans for next year?!!!...........

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 3:35 AM

5. Netty wrote:
Congratulations Jo... I knew you could do it and with style, you have been amazing throughout
Have a lovely relaxed few days and a safe journey home
Three cheers for Jo Hip hip array! Hip hip array! Hip hip array!

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 4:56 AM

6. Liz wrote:
CONGRATULATIONS JO!!! What a great accomplishment. Let us know when you will be in Montreal. Your Ottawa friends

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 7:22 AM

7. Jenny Hurst wrote:
Wow wow wow !! I am full of admiration ....... congratulations...fantastic etc etc etc . You deserve a well earned HOLIDAY !! The first thing I have been doing after work is log on and see how you are doing. What am I going to do now ! Love to you and Rob, Jim and Charlotte (Your main support crew ) Rob and jenny ps see you on the 5th !

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 10:27 AM

8. Helen wrote:
OMG OMG How fantastic. What can we say in awe of one of you most wonderful achievements. You have scratched the itch and tick the box. Enjoy the sunshine while you can, its still raining here humid but wet, get the feeling harvest will be very late.
Congratulations to You and your family and active supporters, all can now relax. Its hard to show how excited and proud we are in a message soooooooooo excited for you. Much love Helen, Fred, Harry and Sarah. x

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 10:58 AM

9. Helen wrote:
Just a thought hope you are bring Stuart home, he will be very sad to be left behind. He would make a brilliant wall feature at home.x

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 11:02 AM

10. Lucy wrote:
Wow! Congratulations you did iit.
Fantastic to see picture of you and Stuart having a dip!

Lucy x

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 4:42 PM

11. Brad Crossley - Halifax wrote:
Here is a note I sent to my good friends prior to writing on the blog above that will give you a feel for the day and Jo's finish into Halifax.

Hi All:

Five days into our summer holiday afforded us teachers and things are in full swing. I've started to get some consistent days in on the feet and on the bike and once my 'training buddies' get their schedules set in the coming week I should be able to start getting really serious in preparation for the August Half Ironman and the full Florida Ironman set for November.

Today, I was fortunate in many ways. I was able to find a four hour block to get out for a long ride on the bike and the weather was awesome. Secondly, I had a chance meeting with another person at a stop light in Lantz that was simply inspiring and humbling all at once but it made me smile inside and out for hours!

Cruising along 50k into my ride I came up upon a cyclist going the other way and said my hello across the road shortly before turning back. My first thought was "hey there is a local gal enjoying the day and making a quick trip from home to the store or something…boy was I wrong! A short 10 minutes later I came up upon the same cyclist at a stop light in Lantz while on my way back into Dartmouth. She was on a solid looking 'mountain bike with rugged cyclo cross tires', a computer, small tool pack on the back and a lock on the front. I pulled up beside her and said hello once again asking her how her ride was going and where she was riding. At the same time I was feeling pretty good about my gear and effort thus far for the day. I did startle her as I pulled back up beside her saying Hello again. I asked her where she was off to etc etc. She stated: "I am having a good ride, and am on the last miles of a ride across Canada that I started in April." Needless to say I was in awe of what she just told me. She went on to ask: "Can you tell me where there is a beach around at the end to dip my bike in and take some pictures?" The light turned green and I suggested we pop over the other side and chat which we did!

Jo Woolliams, of Lincolnshire England, went on to tell me that she wanted to do a long bike trek for her 50th birthday and she set her sights on traveling across Canada starting in Vancouver and finishing in Halifax by July 31. She was doing it to challenge herself and to support Cancer Research in the UK (Jo also has a website Almost speechless, which rarely ever happens to me, we chatted further about the remainder of her trip into Halifax down through the Lake system into Dartmouth across the bridge into Halifax and south to Point Pleasant Park. Her husband Rob was on the road somewhere and I had hoped to cross paths with him as well. We exchanged contact information and I guaranteed her that I would be back to find her and guide her to Point Pleasant Park to the finish. It was not hard to tell that I was amazed with her!

To make things short, I got home, got cleaned up, asked Leslie to join me and we jumped back out onto the Waverley Road in the Jeep in search of Jo, catching up to her at the far end of Lake Charles. Shortly after, we met up with her husband Rob who joined the trip off and on while returning home to England only to fly back to Montreal to finish the trip with his lovely wife. We guided Jo down into Dartmouth, across the bridge and through downtown Halifax into Point Pleasant Park and a dip in the Atlantic Ocean…yes, Jo and the bike hit the water with jubilation! Jo was tearful and grateful for the 7000km and almost 3 month journey from coast to coast! After a few pictures and sharing the special moment with her husband on Black Rock Beach they quickly called home to share the news and the experience with their children with exhilaration, love, and emotion.

In short, my 100km day pales in comparison to Jo's journey and her drive, determination and accomplishment. She is a spark-plug fire-cracker of a character and I am humbled and inspired by her! A chance meeting, a wonderful story, a great gift! One that can inspire us all!

Thanks Jo! ….WOW!

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 5:13 PM

12. Ernie & Myrt wrote:
Congratulations on your incredible journey finished in record time. I can get up off my knees earlier now every morning. So glad Rob was with you. We are all so proud of you. Take care now and be sure to see a little more of the maritimes before you head home. It is our favourite part of Canada, next to Salmon Arm, BC
our love to all the family. xoxoxoxo

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 9:29 PM

13. Sandra Thompson wrote:
Thanks Brad, what a wonderful contribution to the story of Jo's epic journey. Fantastic you were there.
With regards and best wishes from all Jo's family and friends.

Thu, July 5, 2012 @ 10:58 PM

14. john ( towcester ) wrote:
Hi jo, Congratulations on completing your epic journey. Hope to see you and rob at michelle and nicks in towcester in the near future. Best wihes to all john

Fri, July 6, 2012 @ 2:36 AM

15. Michele and Nick Hastings wrote:
Great stuff you and especially Stu have done great things together
Well done to you both
Looking forward to see ing one of you soon...... providing you can be parted !!!

Fri, July 6, 2012 @ 4:38 AM

16. All in Dry Doddington wrote:
Amazing, fantastic, inspirational, an incredible achievement. Many, many congratulations on cycling across Canada, you are now in the superstar league of achievers, well done from all in Dry Doddington xxx

Fri, July 6, 2012 @ 8:56 AM

17. JANE AVISON wrote:
Amazing, brilliant, a massive achievement. We are all thrilled for you. Looking forward to seeing you back home next month.
All our admiration. The Avison's xxxxxxx

Sun, July 8, 2012 @ 3:33 PM

18. Brad Crossley - Halifax wrote:
Hi Again!

My wife and I had the chance to take Jo and Rob to Dinner here in Halifax on Friday night and spend some time overlooking the Halifax waterfront while watching the ships sail by and listening to the outdoor Jazz concert. WE really enjoyed getting to know the two of them and had a chance to learn more about Jo's journey and Jo and Rob's life back home in England. We had a wonderful time and really enjoyed learning about family and friends. They are so proud of all of you, my words couldn't really express it! As impressed as we all are of her, the drive and determination she has exhibited in many ways comes from each of you! It was very evident in the way that she speaks about home, and about family and friends. I wish you all the best of health, happiness, and friendship!
Kind regards,
Brad & Leslie Crossley

Sun, July 8, 2012 @ 9:28 PM

19. June and Albert Bailey wrote:
Well done Jo. What an amazing thing you have done.

Mon, July 9, 2012 @ 5:05 AM

20. Michael Kheng wrote:
I take my hat off to you Jo. Here's me won't take my bike out if it's ranting or windy. You make me look like a right wuss!!

Well done, a really fantastic for such a sporty person!

See you when you get home.

Sal & Michael x

Thu, July 12, 2012 @ 1:34 PM

21. Whittakers wrote:
Jo, you really are amazing and you must have all sorts of feelings and emotions going on even over a week after finishing!
How did you get used to your legs not going around every day?
Everyone here is just in awe of what you have achieved and very proud of you.
It just highlights what can be achieved while the rest of us just keep up our dull routine - 7000 km is one hell of a distance let alone the varying conditions that you have experienced.
We can't wait to hear ALL the stories!
Looking forward to seeing you soon!
Well done you!
Love, Julia, Mark,Tom and Charlie xx

Thu, July 12, 2012 @ 3:17 PM

22. Dyas Family wrote:
Congratulations Jo what a brilliant achievement!
Look forward to seeing you soon to hear the stories.
Phil, Jayne and Jonny

Fri, July 13, 2012 @ 5:23 AM

23. Jo wrote:
Just sat on the floor waiting for five hours before check in. Rob already bound for home via USA only flight he could get. My flight delayed take off because of UK weather! Typical! Anyway going to bring some of this sun home with me. Can't wait now missed you guys like crazy. Those messages have been fantastic cheers to you all and see ya soon.

Tue, July 17, 2012 @ 4:27 PM

24. Paula Turnbull wrote:
Amazing Jo! What a life changing experience, you are an inspiration. Well done. Hope you are relaxing at home, though no doubt you are back to normal as if nothing had ever happened.

Wed, July 25, 2012 @ 3:37 PM

25. Martin & Carmen wrote:
Jo: congratulations on a brilliant and truly worthwhile achievement. We are full of admiration.
Love Martin & Carmen

Sun, August 5, 2012 @ 3:55 AM

26. Helen Cooney wrote:
Wow. I read about your mammoth trip in Cycling Plus. You have done an amazing courageous thing. You should be so proud of yourself. Having done a few mad solo trips myself I can appreciate all you went through. Take a bow!!! I will be supporting your charity to recognise your efforts. Thanks for your inspiration. Helen

Thu, September 13, 2012 @ 1:26 PM

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