Billi plays a new game

8 Feb

Billi and I have just found a new game that gets us both outside enjoying all the snow in the backyard. I have hilarious fun using my walking stick to fling her stuffed ring toy and she blasts throw the fluffy snow to fetch it. Ringette keeps both of us amused and certainly gives her lots of exercise.

She is very calm back inside when she is being de-iced.


Super Blue Moon

31 Jan

I was up early this morning and took this picture at from my back deck. Not much creativity in the composition, sorry about that;  it was -15°C and I was in my pajamas so this was my only view. I haven’t yet figured out caused the rainbow-like flare.

I didn’t use a tripod and so nearly froze my hand on the top of the barbeque holding the camera still for the 3″ exposure.  It tended to stick, just like the little boy’s tongue on the pump handle. 5475 rew Super Blue Moon

Ontario cold temperatures

29 Dec

Record cold winter temps got the best of my Subaru yesterday in Ottawa. I had to call CAA to get a boost to get started. We did make it home without incident but this morning I bought a new battery charger to be able to maintain the battery up to full charge. ( I just found on the old charger box a date of 1976 and CTC $17.95  ) By my research, the Norco Genius G3500 3.5A unit is the best car charger and I was happy to be able to find one. I paid $89.99 plus taxes at Canadian Tire.  The included pigtail quick disconnect is wired directly to the battery so I don’t have to open the hood and mess around putting the alligator clips onto the proper terminals. Very handy.

The 200km highway trip from Ottawa hadn’t completely charged the battery. Surprised me, but my Subaru service technician says most cars have charging systems designed to only maintain the battery and won’t charge them up after being drained in cold weather trying to start a frozen engine.
I’ve now been using the charger for a few days and checking the voltage as an indication of the overall condition of the battery. I can’t get it to full charge and nder the load of the starter the voltage dropped to only 7.6V Clearly my Subaru needs a new battery.

The cold weather doesn’t slow down my Billi, excited to play fetch with a favorite ring, the temp of – 17°C

In hopes that I can get started tomorrow, I removed the battery and brought it into the house to warm up. I washed it with tepid water and soap. Now about 30 minutes later the top is dry but it continues to make frost on the sides. So I expect that it’s probably frozen, yet it reads 12.44 Volts.

This morning I phoned my Subaru dealer and there isn’t a battery in stock and won’t be for a few days to honour my pro-rated warranty. So I went to the CarQuest auto supply and bought a new 640cca rated batery that solves my problem.​
Sammy helped me install it and the car now starts properly.


18 Oct

Brisk temps Wednesday morning with heavy frost on the bikes. All day we had clear sunny skies warming us. Wonderfu roads in Quebec, Hwy 391 and 101 complete with an old covered bridge.

We crossed into Ontario at Temiscaming and Hwy 533 to Mattawa was the best on our trip. WooHoo twisties. Tomorrow we are leaving North Bay and going to vist friends on Georgian Bay near Parry Sound.
I spent some time at GNSCC, near Parry Sound, the location where I started the local JackRabbit cross country ski program for kids; back in 1982. What a blast to see how the club and ski trails flourishing. An amazing group of volunteers!
We arrived at my friends mid afternoon. Larry rode on home to Midland and I’ve stayed overnight for a visit. Lis is such a great cook, so I was spoiled for dinner.
I slept well woke in time to see the sunrise.

Life is good; offee in the morning with this view.

Although it was very windy Thursday afternoon and evening there were still lots of red coloured maple leaves on the way to Bracebridge.

I had a perfect riding day on Saturday, the pleasant 15 to 20°C temperatures are much nicer than the stinky hot sweaty days of summer day sweltering inside my crashgear suit.  I got home just before dark Saturday evening in time for a late dinner.

All round I had a great trip of about 2,600km over 9 days.


16 Oct

The warm wet weather conditions have changed into cold and clear. We been able to dry out in the Hawberry Motel overnight and both of us have more layers of warm clothing to wear today. We will get a good breakfast here in Little Current and then leave for Timmins where it currently is -3℃. I’m envious of Larry’s winter bib/pants and his electricaly heated hand grips. Highway 144 North is a great road, hills and turns (not twisties) but very scenic. Larry saw 2 bull moose together along the road at the edge of trees. We got into Timmins for lunch at about 3:00pm. HUNGRY. Apparently there was snow this morning and yesterday morning. Today’s high temp was 6℃. The Bonaire Motel in Timmins has an overhanging roof for Vstroms.​

Lots of bumpy gravel, about 70km
and a visit to a medical marijuana grow lab, DelShen theapeutics near Kirkland Lake at an old the old Swastika MNR tree nursery.
Tuesday night we stayed in very nice B&B Gite Le Passant in Rouyn-Noranda; good value,I highly recommend it.​

Manitoulin Island

15 Oct

We loaded early this morning on the last run of the season under the threat of serious rain and gale force winds forecasted. Small load, probably just 20%. Coming across we had rolling seas with winds 35 to 45 kts, lots of waves breaking into spindrift, but a pleasant 16℃ temperature. It was easy to see where the shoals are because of the foamy breakers. Ok to be on deck but very windy. Good hearty breakfast on board served up cafeteria style by a young woman from Rose Blance area of Newfoundland.​The ship had lots of rock and roll, everyone walking around with the staggers. I expect everyone was a bit uncomfortable. Because of the sea conditions the crew told me they were going to quickly unload and reload and leave the island immediately neglecting the schedule.

Bruce Peninsula

14 Oct

A damp start leaving Midland with Larry. By the time we said hi to Wiarton Willie the sun came out.
Lunch at Rachel’s Bakery, in Lion’s Head, was great. Afterwards, we followed the coastline as far as we could towards Cabot Head Lighthouse; unfortunately closed for this summer. DSCF0690ew Cabot Head

We rode as far as we could, to the closed barrier, but couldn’t get to the light house or the basin. Very remote, beautiful gravel road along the water’s edge. Well worth the dead eblnder. Bummer; I was last there in about 1974 by sailboat from Parry Sound.

Now we’re in the Blue Anchor Motel in Tobermory for the night, with an early morning ferry reservation.