Day 1 – Bicycle Touring Trip – Regina to Buffalo Pound Lake Provincial Park
The following summarizes a three-day bicycle touring trip from Regina, SK to Buffalo Pound Lake Provincial Park north of Moose Jaw. The route followed highway shoulders an interesting labyrinth of back roads. The trip was cut short on the second day when my bicycle rear axle snapped in two. Maps showing approximate routing are included at the bottom of each post.
This account is text only as I can’t seem to find any photos.
This trip utilized my low-budget steel frame “Voyageur” 1991 Mountain Bike. After ten years of extensive commuting and its second touring trip, the rear axle failed. The bike of course is not really designed for touring, so held up well considering.
Heading Out from Regina
Loaded bike with ~35 pounds of gear, the total bicycle weight 75 pounds. Left from folks place in SE Regina with Rob at 6:30 a.m. Biked along the shoulder of Arcola Ave, the Ring Road and Highway 11 to Lumsden. Reached a maximum of 60 km/hr down the Lumsden valley hill (not likely a wise speed on that old bike loaded with gear).
Apparently my rear derailleur cable was busted, so I only had three speeds using the front chainring. Enjoyed typical rural Sask sights including abandoned farms, hawks, etc.
Stop in Disley
Stopped at a residence in the hamlet of Disley for water refill. We attempted navigating backroad westward from Disley, assuming we’d not likely make Buffalo Pound Lake by dark. The backroads were a nice quiet break from the noisy highway, but a challenge to navigate. Some scenic backroads through the Qu’appelle Valley and a few dirt tracks made for a refreshing ride. The map below shows an approximate routing, I can’t remember exactly how we went.
Nicole Homestead and Spring
Weather was sunny with moderate north wind. Had a few relaxing stops. Surprisingly we reached Nicole Homestead by around 2 p.m. Nicole Homestead is a historic farm house near the east end of Buffalo Pound Lake. Cooled off at the spring hear the homestead, applied second layer of sunscreen.
We cycled to the White Track downhill ski runs and camped out on a nearby cross-country trail near a shelter by 3:30 p.m. Rested in the tent and read books (Rob read “Wilderness Seasons” by Ian and Sally Wilson).
Then… steak for supper! Rob brought a frozen steak along which we grilled (sort of) over the campstove. I recall we used a metal slotted mail organizer over the white gas stove as a make-shift grill. Rob explored the area, being in better shape than myself (trains for bicycle races).
A cold night, estimated at around -2 C. I slept clothed with sweater and toque.