The Spoked Traveller | ...connecting cyclists to local trails, food and adventures.
Trails and advice cycling around the world as solo female cyclist and adventurer
mountain bike, adventure travel, cycling travel, bike tours, outdoor, solo travel, female mountain biking, badass female cycling, female travellers, women travel, adventurous
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The Spoked Traveller

…connecting cyclists to local trails,

food and adventures.

It never occurred to me to leave my bike at home on my first overseas trip. Twenty years later, nothing has changed. Whether at home, or in a foreign country, riding makes me feel closer to people and places.

I created this site as a hub for all things cycling; it’s a celebration of bike culture. Where to travel next, how to travel, where to get advice, see some cool practical bike fashion, what to eat. I’ll share what I know; and I invite you to do the same.

Over the next few months keep checking in as I’ll be adding some new menu items.

See you on the trails. Melanie

Reintegration into the real world is imminent. Weighed in today. Lost 2.5 pounds: inch off abdomen and a slice, about half inch, off the buttinski. Healthy food and exercise aside, I'm convinced I lost wine weight. Tonight we get one glass at our final supper. At cardio max class I pushed it hard knowing it was only hours away! Cardio max is a high-intensity interval class: 2, 4 and 6 minutes on different machines. Time flies by! Lunch with the gang over a hearty canellellini bean shrimp stew.          

Slept in until 6:30 am this morning. No call about the hike: boo hoo.  Besides the food, the hike is my favourite part. Plucking grapefruits, pomegranates and persimmons from the trees. Oh, and baby avocados. I recouped lost ground, however, with three fitness classes back-to-back: funky rock and roll dance, followed by an elastic band session (loads of arms) and then spin. Fell asleep during facial.  

Heard the rain on the tiled roof last night. Ahh. Woke 5:30 am for hike, but it was too wet so I decided to stay up and write. Quiet and focused over a strong cup of coffee. And, my most favourite time, breakfast. After which I met with personal trainer, "the Mighty E" as they call her, Ellen. I think knowing it was our last session, she upped the ante.            

Ok, I leave for San Diego--tomorrow. I'm writing a story for Mountain Life magazine (www.gb.mountainlifemag.ca) about a famous, and long standing holistic spa called Golden Door. www.goldendoor.com. Every time I have mentioned The Golden Door to American friends, I get a few responses: "Oh, that is one of the originals." Or, "posh," is my favourite.

"I'm part Scottish and part Polish. Which means, I like to drink, but I don't like to pay for it," says Frank Biskupek, the Scotch Brand Ambassador for Glenlivit. This was going to be a good night. Frank and a room full of whisky lovers (and neophytes such as myself) are here at the Black Dog Village Pub and Bistro in Bayfield celebrating St. Andrews Day-- Scotland's Patron Saint celebrated on November 30th. Frank is taking us through a five-course menu paired with whisky ranging in age from 12 to 21-years-old. Oh, the burn! www.blackdogpubbistro.ca. The night starts with a procession: a bagpiper followed by Dog co-owner Ted holding a tray with a bottle of Glenlivit. Quite the religious introduction. I love the simplicity of Scottish food. Maybe it's because I'm part Scot and Newfie; our trademark dish, Jigg's Dinner, is meat, potatoes, carrots, dumplings and cabbage boiled in the beef's juices. The first course of our evening, after a glass of Tennents Lager, www.tennents.com (which accounts for 1 in 2 beers served in Scotland) is Boyndie Broth. "It looks like oatmeal," I say to my friend. Sure enough, Kathleen, Ted's wife and co-owner, reveals that Irish Boyndie is chicken stock, carrots, steel oats and a splash of milk. "It's stick-to-your-ribs kind of food. Good after a cold night out," she says.