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Draplin Design Co., North America
November 15, 2005
DDC:GAA:FT: 11152005:L11:D63
Posted at 11:43 PM


Made some good time out of Thunder Bay all the way up and over to Kenora. Dry, brittle roads. Snow-covered trees. So pretty. Then the snow started and the 32 degrees temperature was at that dangerous point where the snow is slushy and slick, and starting to freeze. The “no man’s land” from Kenora to the Manitoba border was pretty scary. Those big rigs screaming by were the sketchiest.

269. “Big mosquitos up here, or so they say.”
270. “Mom and Gary weren’t all that impressed.”
271. “Trying like hell to get out of Ontario’s westernmost nothingness…”

Once we braved the wilds of the westernmost sections of Ontario, we entered into Manitoba and met up with Highway One, where the road splits into a four lane interstate. Thank fuckin’ God. There is just something fucked about a big rig flying at you, some four feet away, on a slick-ass little two lane road. Yikes.

The snow was pounding, the winds blowing, and of course, no one was really using any sort of caution. I set my cruise control at 39mph and just sorta “kept it mellow” in the dangerous conditions. One gal whipped by me, and then a couple miles later I see lights oddly angled up and pointing into the median. She lost control and skidded into the center median. She said she was okay, and continued rattling away on her cell phone. We kept going, and with each kilometer, things got uglier and uglier.

We’re snailing along and up comes a small car, some sort of turquoise Grand Am or something, whipping by us. If we’re doing 35-40mph, this fucker must’ve been doing a cool 60mph. Insane. So we’re watching as he passes and angles back into our lane up ahead of us. “There he goes!,” yells mom. I see lights and taillights and snow banks exploding and watch him lose his shit and go whirling off, and, manage to “pull it off” and keep himself on the road. He did a couple 360s for sure. So lucky. Then he speeds off and his lights disappear ahead of us soon after.

So we’re driving along and we notice some lights pointing kinda “unnaturally” up out of the center median. As we roll up we see some turquoise and a figure on a cell phone leaning up against his quarter panel. We roll to a stop, ask if he’s okay, he waves us on, and that’s that. Another one bites the dust.

And then, the roads got even worse. All ice. Blowing snow. Remote as fuck.

272. “The roads smelled of and icy death.”

This is where the forest ended and the Canadian Prairie began.

We kept that cruise control redlining at 26mph and snailed our way alllll the way to Winnipeg some 80km away. Took us a couple hours, but, we made it. Even saw a jack-knifed big rig at one point too. Yet another wreck. Wow.

We rolled into a heavily-snowed-in Winnipeg, carefully navigating the foot high snowbank lanes. Big S handles the snow pretty well with his front wheel drive wonder. We found a Motel 8 and called it a night.

Winnipeg is also known as, “Winter Peg.” Shit. I’ll say.

273. “The outskirts of a very snowy Winnipeg.”

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