The Update #55 – Downhill from Here

by Jasper and Lonneke
8 May 2022
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After the first week of hard work, we now got into a good rhythm. We even decided to work a little longer this week for the first four days so that at the end of the week we had three days to go on adventures. The work mainly continued where we left off last week, digging holes, sawing planks, and planting plants. It is so nice to be outside every day working with our hands, although it is still chilly outside, especially in the morning, the weather seems to be getting a little better every day. And with the views of the amazing mountains all around us, working here is simply not a punishment.

On Thursday we already went on our first adventure, this time we didn’t go on an adventure together but separately. I went downhill biking (crossing your bike down a steep slope) with Mark and Nicola and Lon went on an adventure on the SidebySide (a golf cart on steroids). It was the first time for me that I went downhill mountain biking, I have cycled through the woods in the Netherlands before, but of course, you don’t come across real mountains. What is often done here in the summer is to throw your bike in the back of the pick-up, ride up the mountain and then cross the marked trails down the hill with your bike. We were with two bicycles and three people because then someone can drive the truck down again to pick us up. Because cycling up the mountain is a bit too much exercise. We had an easy start at the first kilometer, you can drive up to 16 kilometers but we skipped that for now luckily. We unloaded the bikes, put on our helmets, put on our knee pads, and got on the bikes. We started flat so I could get used to the bike, I felt pretty confident because this looked a lot like mountain biking through the woods of the Netherlands. But the confidence soon faded when we got to the start of the real trail. It was a very narrow path going down the mountainside. After getting a few more tips from Mark, I pedaled over the edge and then I whizzed down, hoping I’d get down in one piece.

Meanwhile, haha ​​yes, you read that right, a real cliffhanger is coming, Lon was on the road with the SidebySide. She found it a little stressful to race through the woods on her own. It is still bear territory and although she would like to see bears, it is also very scary to see bears. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, she didn’t encounter any bears on the way and had to turn around quickly because there was still too much snow on the trails. But she did have fun racing through the woods.

In the meantime, I whizzed down the mountain with the wind through my hair (?) and sweaty palms. I had to brake hard now and then to make the corners and now and then there were big hills on the trail, which more experienced downhillers would go over with big jumps. But most of all I made sure that both my wheels stayed on the ground and that I could stay upright on my bike. Once back down I got the hang of it, I understood why this is so addictive. Even though you don’t have to pedal, it is still very tiring, because you are on your pedals all the time and you are very concentrated to ensure that you do not crash off the mountain. After that first time, I rode down the mountain twice more, each time it got a little better, and I got more control over the bike. Hopefully, I’ll get the chance to do this again and who knows, maybe Lon will come along to try it out too.

Because we were both a bit tired from the week of physical work, we decided to make it a quiet day on Friday. In the morning Bob got two new tires because after 40,000 km the first two tires were already worn out. We had hoped to be able to do a little longer with the tires but unfortunately not. We have now gone for slightly more expensive tires in the hope that they will last a lot longer. Then we explored the village of Golden where we stay nearby. We took a nice walk around the village, strolled through the shopping street, and had a cup of coffee in the second-hand book store.

The next two days were real adventures, we went on a quad and sidebyside adventure with Mark and the boys and we went looking for the waterfalls on Mark and Flore’s land. Near the house are many different dirt roads used by the logging companies. You can explore this very well with the quad or the sidebyside, you will end up in new beautiful valleys or find hidden lakes and waterfalls. But because it is still early in the season, many roads are still covered with a layer of snow, so you can’t get very far with the quad or sidebyside. This trip was mainly intended to see how far we could get exactly. We took every turn we could take and drove on until the snow blocked our way. We only made it a small distance on one road while on the other roads we were able to plod through the mud for longer. It is really nice to cross through the woods. The other real adventure was on Mark and Flore’s land, three different waterfalls can be found on this piece of land. The first of the three is very easy to find and we could almost reach it with the sidebyside. But we had to get out and climb and scramble quite a bit for the other two. You had to pay attention now and then because there were still pieces of snow and ice that you could slide down if you were not careful. It was a lot of fun to explore these private waterfalls, especially since you know that very few people get the chance to discover this place.

Well, that’s it for this week, we will stay with Mark and Flore until June 5th to explore the area even further. Then we dive back into Bob to discover the rest of Canada, hopefully without too much snow.

Lots of love,

Jap and Lon

Spendings of the Week

Budget per day €54 and per week €378 and per month €1700

What/WhereCost [CAD (€)*]
Eating out19,62 (€ 14,62)
Groceries8,44 (€ 6,20)
Other692,26 (€ 508,94)
Total720,32 (€ 529,76)
* 1 CAD = € 0,7352

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