Brandon to Kenora

The last leg, and the last entry. Well, let’s see. We drove from Brandon to Kenora. No, I’ll have to do better than that. Let’s try again.

Arriving at Winnipeg, Dingbat tried to take us on one of his shortcuts through outer suburbia. We did this once before, and it’s a nice change to see the plant nurseries of western Winnipeg, but all we wanted to do today was cover ground. So we ‘detoured’ Dingbat, obliging him to take us to the Perimeter highway, but he got the last laugh. As soon as we joined the bypass, bridge work held us up for twenty minutes. Annoying bridge work at that; the road crew had one lane closed so they could park their pickup trucks on it, one lane closed so they could stand around thinking, and the lane that was supposed to be open was the one they were working on. The extra truck traffic must have broken up asphalt of the shoulder. All traffic in our direction came to a complete halt while they trickled some cold-patch tar into a series of potholes. They could have opened one of the other lanes while they did this, but that would have been more work for them. Easier just to close the highway for twenty minutes and back traffic up for a couple of kilometers. Should have listened to Dingbat, we’d have missed the whole show.

Anyway, home just after 1500, so plenty of time to unpack. The lawn is a jungle, or at least a rain forest, but a storm is threatening, and the forecast is for a rainy weekend, so I don’t know when it’ll get cut.

Motor Homes vs. Trailers finished at 359 to 311. In the US, we saw a consistent preference for the motorized variety. Once we returned to Canada, Caroline outscored me with trailers every day, and would have caught up or passed me given an equal number of days. The summer tourist season kicks off this afternoon with the US Memorial Day weekend, and campers of all kinds will crowd the highways from now on.

Trip summary. We drove 8016km in two and a half weeks. To put that in perspective, we did an oil change the day before we left, and we are now 3000km overdue for the ‘September oil change. I use synthetic oil, so I am not worried about it breaking down, but I’d better book another appointment.

Next time. Well, before next time, I’d like to just run down to Grand Forks one weekend and see how much it really costs to bring extra (more than the duty-free allowance of two bottles each) wine across the border in Manitoba. If it’s not too much more, we like the American drive across the prairies better than the Canadian one. We especially liked US 2, a highway that wanders across America from Illinois to Washington, mostly near the Canadian border. That might be a future trip. We’d still like to see more of Washington, we were fascinated by the variety the state offers: snowy mountains, tranquil farmland, rugged coast.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed the trip!

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