July 31, 2008

7/31/08 Portneuf, QC

118.4km/5735km

The thunderstorm last night, besides pounding us with a heavy downpour, had thunder that seemed to rumble forever. Unlike the other night time storms, the rain definitely wasn't finished by the time we hit the road.

Finally saw a big ship on the river

It seems the closer we get to Quebec (the city), the more 'foreign' everything is becoming. The houses and towns have a European feel. All across Canada you see the red maple-leaf flag of the country but not here. Here we only see the Quebec provence flag. This must also be a very Catholic provence too. Even the smaller towns have huge churches that seem to overpower the surroundings. And we've seen dozens if not more, religious statues in people's yards from small garden-size to full life-size figurines.

Just in someone's yard

I think we only rode an hour before the rain started to come down on us in Trois-Rivieres. To add to that, we were riding into a headwind all day. We must have missed one of the route markers because we came in straight by the highway. Not always a fun thing when it's raining.

In Cap-de-la-Madeleine we saw the strangest cathedral, the Notre-Dame du Cap. If anything, that really showed us we are in a foreign country.

Notre Dame du Cap

More farmland and riverbank views on our ride but also more rain. In fact, it didn't stop till we reached the Camping Panoramique in Portneuf.

Tonight's campground is the total opposite of yesterdays. This is one of these camping cities with hundreds of RVs in not more. We met a few more cyclists camping here though. Yan is from Montreal and is biking up to Gaspe.

It's also getting harder to meet people who speak English. I don't think it's because the Quebecers don't speak English, I just don't think they get much practice. Even their worst English is still better than my French.

Tomorrow if the weather is nice, we might ride through the old-quarter of Quebec city.