This topic contains 11 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by July 2, 2017 at 8:02 pm.
June 25, 2017 at 5:05 pm #39422
Here is my proposed route for the Adventure ride on July 1st. Naturally, it’s 150 km to celebrate Canada’s 150th.
ALSO NOTE: Start time will be 7:30 AM, instead of the usual 8:30. This gives us more time for this longer route – I would expect the full route to be 6+ hours, and potentially 8-9 hours elapsed time with the various stops.
We start with familiar roads heading due northwest, up towards part of the G2G trail, and then up to Floradale, for part of the reservoir loop. Then into sandy hills, where we can get through to Seiling Rd.
At km 43, at the corner of Sideroad 11 and 3rd Line West, there is a shortcut option of following the route from km 97. Taking this shortcut would reduce the route to about 100 km. Those who want a shorter day or who have plans later in the day can do this together as a group if the desire is there.
The primary route continues through Elora and Fergus (stops for hydration can happen here) and then onto the Elora Cataract trial, all the way to Belwood lake. Then it’s north and onto Sideroads 15 and 5. I’ve never rode these roads, and the google streetviews are not available, but they appear to be fully gravel.
At Wellington Road 7, we can take a quick turn northwest to Alma if bottles are getting low again.
Then back to more familiar territory, Middlebrook road, then Middlebrook place, and the Letson Drive and Peel Street bridges over the Grand. Then a bit more meandering, and back through Conestogo, and finally, the Avon Trail from Northfield to St. Jacobs.
The second half is very winding, that gives people the option of taking a straight path back to town whenever needed. But I am planning on doing the full 150 km (maybe more if I ride from home).June 25, 2017 at 6:38 pm #39423
This is an official Waterloo Cycling Club ride,
You must be a 2017 member of Waterloo Cycling Club. Register here:June 28, 2017 at 9:24 pm #39456
Looks like a good route Kevin. Tabi and I are planning on joining the ride. Have you been on the Avon trail between Northfield and Arthur this year? Last time I rode it the trail was in really rough shape because of the horses and my guess is that the flooding has not helped. At the end of a long ride it might not be a great option. If we get the rain they are calling for the next couple days the reservoir trail might be soggy as well.June 29, 2017 at 9:12 am #39457
I was last on the Heath Valley trail from Northfield to the Arthur street bridge on June 5th. So that was before the Great Grand River Valley Flood of ’17.
We can scope it out from the top of the bridge at Northfield first. I might have time Friday night as well to scout.
Could always do more inside Sandy Hills earlier in the day to get our dose of adventure, and ensure we get the full 150 that day.June 30, 2017 at 2:34 pm #39469
Thanks Kevin. Here’s hoping the forecast changes for the better.June 30, 2017 at 6:47 pm #39470
Well, it’s 40% chance of rain right now, with ~1 mm accumulation. That’s 60% chance of no rain!
Even if it rains, it won’t be cold, and we shouldn’t have to worry about dehydration or heat stress.June 30, 2017 at 8:00 pm #39472
If anyone’s worried about the sinking into the trails, bring your Road bike to the Fondo ride 🙂June 30, 2017 at 9:32 pm #39474
Kevin. My bikes already dirty, see you in the morning.June 30, 2017 at 9:32 pm #39475
What road bike? 🙂
Theweathernetwork is more optimistic than weatherunderground and ‘warm’ is subjective. Will see what it looks like in the morning…fingers cx’ed.July 1, 2017 at 4:23 pm #39480
Great route Kevin and awesome ride everyone!
MikeJuly 2, 2017 at 12:41 pm #39482
That was an awesome ride!
I know the term “epic” has gotten a little watered down over the last few years, but this was certainly more than our typical gravel adventure.
Thanks to Kevin Gibson who planned the route and lead the ride. He did his research and used some of the handy technology available to give us some great gravel outside of our normal range with great vistas, nice rollers, and of course bridges closed to cars which means quiet peaceful riding.
The rest of the group was made up of Tabi, Matthew, Taryn, Rene, Mike, Bruce, Colin, Joel, Andy, and Doug, with Sylvia chasing us and catching us in Fergus,
Kevin chose some of his favourite haunts in the area. Which personally had me a little concerned as to whether I would be able to make it. Trails like around the Woolwich reservoir,
and the Sandy Hills trails added more climbing and takes a little more attention than just riding along a gravel road or rail trail.
For once I was grateful for not having too much rail trail, as the slingshot affect at all those gates was really taking its toll on my legs. On the these long rides it seems easier to pull the group into a stiff headwind on a gravel road. Not to mention, it is fun to spend time up front with the likes of Matthew, Tabi, Doug, Rene, and others.
We worked well together when facing the strong headwind. At times we intentionally broke into two smaller groups to make it easy to stay together in the wind. When wind was tail or side, we sometimes stretched out our legs, but always to regroup like normal at the next stop.
If there was time when we regrouped, the conversation may turn to topics like the best way to shoulder a bike as the excitement seems to be “mounting” already, 😉
If we needed a break for nutrition or whatever, then we would find a suitable stop,
We discovered a nice restaurant and bake shop in Alma, but I was too busy filling my face with cookies and chatting with the locals to take a picture. 😉
We had periods of mist, showers, sun through most of the day. However the last hour or two gave us some more serious rain. The gravel around Winterbourne got pretty soggy and felt a lot like the spring gravel grinders. But after more than five hours in the saddle, it was a bit of a test.
Drafting, good group formation, and fear of getting dropped is a huge benefit on the road to help go further. We certainly took advantage of some that, but for gravel grinders I find riding with a group is a huge motivator to pushing through uncomfortable situations to achieve our common goal.
I’ve have had many rides with the club where we have pushed to very challenging conditions for the rewards on the other side. This was another one. We achieved the goal, when if I were solo I probably would have headed home much earlier.
This was a Canada Celebration ride. It was great to see all the Canada Jersey’s. You can see for yourself if you browse the full album by selecting the following,
But I like this photo with the maple leaf flying in the background,July 2, 2017 at 8:02 pm #39484
Thanks for such a detailed and fun filled report, Bill. I truly wanted to join you guys but I had to make sure I was back home early (and in good shape 🙂 ) due to some volunteer duties.
Your guys passion and love for cycling is truly inspiring.
Have a great week!
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