Current Stories
PermaLink Marten River Provincial Park and Rabbit Lake excursion05/19/2017
Category : Jeep Adventure
Marten River Provincial Park Camp Site 99
Victoria Day Long Weekend, perfect opportunity to get outside.

PermaLink Towing a camping trailer with a Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited04/28/2017
Category : Jeep Upgrades
The Jeep has a towing capacity of 2000lb, the Prolite Mini 13 camping trailer is around 1500lb when loaded and is equipped with electrical brakes.
The Jeep DOES NOT have the tow package installed, so this is the standard, unmodified Sahara 2013 model. I already installed the hitch receiver to mount the bicycle rack and connected the 4-pin electrical adapter at the same time. The Prolite Mini trailer uses the round 7-pin connector. The MOPAR 7-pin wiring harness was not really designed for a brake controller and needed some minor adjustment. The Brake Controller is from Tekonsha and sits on the dash.
Jeep Wrangler Sahara 2013 with Prolite Mini 13
This setup works great but has a few flaws.
1. The trailer sits very low. I decided to lift the trailer by about 2 inches.
2. The 100lb load on the hitch (Tongue weight) pushes the Jeep down by more than one inch.
To lift the Prolite Mini I went back to the factory in St-Jérôme, QC.
To level the Jeep I installed the Air Lift 1000 Load Assist Spring Kit.

Getting the parts and the installation was straightforward.
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PermaLink Downhill in Whistler07/20/2016
Category : Hey, why not
This year again, I had the urge to ride the Bike Park in Whistler. Downhill is one of the pleasures I can not indulge in Ontario - there are no mountains!!
Downhill Bike Rental in Whistler from Costal Cultures
The weather eventually got just perfect, sunny and not sticky hot.
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PermaLink 2016 Guelph Lake 1 - Sprint Triathlon06/19/2016
Category : Swim Run Bike
Guelph Lake 1 Triathlon 2016
Almost didn't go because of not enough training. But one week before, I did a 40km bike ride in the morning and a 7.5km run in the evening, I knew I can make it "in style". So I signed up and finished just before one hour and forty-five minutes.
It was Fathers Day and the weather was great, lots of athletes and spectators. My final time was 1:44:45. But most important: I GOT A MEDAL!
PS: The road out the Conservation Area did not get paved, still an "unforgettable" experience on a road bike.
PermaLink Volunteering @ PanAm Games 201507/26/2015
Category : Hey, why not
PanAm 2015 Bloor Parkside corner
This was my corner during the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Road Cycling event on Saturday July 25. My Job - whistle twice when I see the athletes approach and hold up the yellow flag. The women raced from 1 to about 3, the men from 4 to about 8. The track was 16.5km and women made 5 laps, men 10 laps.
The corner on Bloor and Parkside was perfect for spectators, the ones that planned to see the event and the ones just passing by and asking about all this ado. All without exception got into the spirit as soon as they lined up on the fence.
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PermaLink 2015 Guelph Lake 1 - Sprint Triathlon 06/21/2015
Category : Swim Run Bike
Guelph Lake 1
After skipping one year, the race went very well. My time was 1:43:55.
It would make a lot of racers very happy if they repaved the road out of the Conservation are. There were times when I feared for my bones just shaking apart. We can always hope for next year.
PermaLink Rock Climbing - First Time05/16/2015
Category : Hey, why not
I always loved the mountains and I always accept a challenge. Ontario has not much to offer when it comes to mountains, but we have an escarpment very close. An escarpment is basically a piece of rock sticking up as a result of erosion (Thanks Wikipedia). The drop-off is vertical in many places and this makes it a tiny mountain AND a challenge.
Rattlesnake PointMany seasoned climbers will laugh at these walls, but being a first time climber, this was perfect.
These pictures are from Rattlesnake Point, one of the three Conservation Halton parks that allow rock climbing.
The other two parks are Kelso and Mount Nemo
The parks are about one hour west from Toronto, or less than 30 minutes from my home in Mississauga.
Rattlesnake Point
I signed up for a full day course with One Axe Pursuits. After learning some of the basics, up we went. There were several lines installed and we could climb as often as we pleased.
I managed to reach the top on four of the climbs. And I failed on the others.
We had plenty of time to talk about climbing, ropes, mountains and anything related to this sport. One topic was finding a climbing buddy. I found and after signing up, this may be an excellent resource to finding a climbing partner when time comes.
I already bought the harness, but I still have to get shoes, a helmet, rope and anchors. Shoes and helmet are about $200, rope and anchors another $400. The inital investment is close to $1,000. Not sure yet if I will get serious and start. My hobby schedule is already busy with Triathlon training and volunteering at the Pan Am Games this year.
No matter what, this one day climbing course was educational, challenging and time well spent.
PermaLink Rally Of The Thousand Lakes 197604/06/2015 12:14 PM
Category : Hey, why not
Finland 1976. Legendary Rally Of The Thousand Lakes, almost 100 cars in the lineup. Over 400km on gravel roads. Three days of engine noise in the middle of the Finish forest.
The entry list can be found here.

The Rally went through some changes since the first race in 1951. I guess we were lucky enough to have been there during the peak of the 1000 Lakes Rally in the 1970th.
Wikipedia has detailed information about the rally's history. The rally is now known as the Neste Oil Rally Finland and looking at some current race footage, it is as exciting as it was back in 1976. Spectators were roaming freely along the 400km track. Finding the perfect spot was never a problem for us. After looking though our slides, I just had to scan some of them and post them here for everybody to enjoy. Keep in mind that shooting these pictures was a lot of guesswork for me. I'm not a professional photographer and light conditions in the forest are less than perfect. There was some luck involved when trying to capture these very fast moving object.
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Starting the picture sequence with the winning team
Alén Markku and Kivimäki Ilkka, Autonovo, Fiat 131 Abarth
They finished the 428km race in 4 hours 10 minutes 18 seconds, that translates to an average of just over 100km per hour.
Fiat 131 Abarth
Fiat 131 Abarth

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Algonquin Park Trails and GPS coordinates for your smartphone and Google Maps? Get the pictures and information here: Algonquin Park
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Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba. Picutres from the trails and the GPS locations are here: Riding Mountain Park
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