Ride Day 47: Tired after eight consecutive days of pedalling, we set off early on our final day. Only 70-miles remained and I could step off the bike for the last time! The morning was far from plain sailing: I fell off after failing to unclip my shoe from the pedal (you'd think i'd have learned to do this by now!!) and I managed to mistakenly turn onto a motorway which was so dangerous that we retraced our route on foot on the hard-shoulder! With final-day obstacles behind us we pressed on to Halifax. I was thrilled to see the first road sign for the city, I could not even imagine this 10 weeks ago when I set out from Vancouver! We met two crazy cyclists en-route - Jonathan and Chris - who had biked from their home-town of Toronto.  We first met them just outside Quebec City a week ago and Becs and I rode with them again, making fast work of the final push into Halifax. We made it to 'Point Pleasant Park' and touched the Atlantic - the ride had been successfully completed!

I had mixed feelings if i'm honest. Elation, yes. I have given my all to the ride over months: from booking flights, setting up the website, buying the bike, putting in some training, doing some fundraising, planning the route, packing the kit, co-ordinating the support team, buying 'Wilbert' the support car and pedalling over 3,800 miles... 47 days on the bike and 13 much-earned rest days. 8 provinces, 5 time-zones, 5 punctures, the Rockies, Prairies, Great Lakes, French-speaking Quebec, the Maritime region... I was definately chuffed to bits to successfully make it to the end!

I thought of the amazing support I have had. From my Dad who made such an impact on the journey and worked so hard. From Moley and Shazza who were with me for a month, I'll never forget our time together or how much they put into the expedition. From Charlie and Becs who have helped me to finish the ride, bringing a certain amount of organised chaos to proceedings and lots of laughter! From Canadian people from coast-to-coast who have invited me into their homes, donated money to the Trust, offered discounts on campgrounds or motels but mostly have just offered a warm welcome and a friendly chat. It's amazing to think just how much has happened from the time when the ride was just an idea, a distant dream.  I felt overwhelmed and choked to think how lucky i've been to experience all this. And sad that it ends here in Halifax, as my feet touched the icey Atlantic water.

As the elation and sad feelings flew around my head I thought of Rob. He's been at the forefront of my mind all summer and with us in spirit the whole way i'm sure. He's the inspiration for the journey and no doubt would be pleased for me to successfully make it from Pacific to Atlantic. I feel for the loved ones Rob has left behind: for his Mum and Dad Nikki and Dave, his brother and sister Tim and Louise, his girlfriend Lucinda and his Everest and Pole-to-Pole expedition partner James. I feel also for the family and friends of James Atkinson who died with Rob in the French Alps in January. Robbo had a fantastic spirit, he lived his 21-years to the full. He inspired many and achieved so much. He became a close friend over 6-months through deserts and stormy seas. We hope the Rob Gauntlett Trust will go some way to keep Rob's spirit alive. Young people will benefit from the charity and continue to hear about who Rob was and the inspirational way he led his life. The donations received during the ride will go some way to get the Trust Fund off to a good start and I can only thank all the people who have supported me to this end from the bottom of my heart. You have made every mile, every hill and every ache more than worthwhile. Thanks to everyone who has followed the journey over the summer, it really has been a privilege to undertake and an experience i'll never forget.
 


Comments

roger dwyer
09/14/2009 00:04

congratulations son, we are all very proud of your huge achievement. Lots of love MUM and DAD xxxxxxxxxxxxx

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steven
09/14/2009 06:25

Congratulations John from me and the family.

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Helen Sheppeard
09/14/2009 12:26

Fantastic effort John!!! What an achievement - something you'll never forget and can be so proud of!!

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Frankie Jones
09/15/2009 00:32

Well Done Mr Dwyer!
It was such a fantastic achievement and having you as our geography teacher really inspired us all. We'll definitely miss your 'Facts and Figs'!
Geography just isnt the same without you!

Love from all of us in Upper 5

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Willem&Erna Wensvoort
09/15/2009 10:32

Dear John.
As I just read your last report that you made safely John,God's spirit was teling me that he kept you safely.So John congratulation for your accomplishment that you set out to do. Erna and I had the priviledge meeting you at the corner in Chaplin Saskatchewan,and to have you to stay the night with us.And the next morning praying with you that GOD will keep you safe on the road and to finish your journey.GOD bless John by your spirit that he feel your Presence at all times.We love you John.Willem and Erna Wensvoort.

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Helen Jones
09/15/2009 11:30

Huge congratulations JBD!!
We have really enjoyed following your blog and seeing the pictures of your journey.
It looks and sounds like you have had an amazing trip. Well done you!!
Safe journey home. Love Helen, Mark and MJ xx

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Lucinda Sandon-Allum
09/15/2009 15:13

Congratulations!!! That is such a fantastic achievement!
I have followed your journey over the summer and it seemed like an incredible adventure, and you took some seriously good pictures!
I am sure you have inspired so many people doing this coast to coast ride, myself included - and you should be so proud of yourself :-)
Well done!
Take care,
Lucinda x
PS. We miss you in geography - it is so weird without you!

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Heyy Mr Dwyre
Just writing on here to say, this is a very impressive bike ride you rode on. Congratulations for completing it.
Hope the next one goes just as well.
Taa raa for now
Lozzaaaa, Cannonball and Shneakyy
xx

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Laura and chloe
11/18/2010 02:31

to frankie jones
haha we have mr dwyer now
and we dont get facts and figs, we get shout outs! and methodology tables,
mr dwyer you rock as a geogerss teacher

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