Monday, July 14, 2014

July 14, 2014. Bowmanville to Toronto, ON. 60 Miles.

We had a great breakfast this morning, compliments of Holiday Inn Express in Bowmanville. They even had Canadian bacon and turkey sausage!  We left the hotel well fortified, and armed with over 4 pages of cues and a 12 page map! At mile 4.7, after making 8 turns we were in some heavy construction. Most of us dismounted to walk our bikes through the mud pit created by the construction crew. A few hardy souls pedaled through. Below are Pat and Dianne.

We got past the construction and rode into Darlington Provincial Park. What a beautiful ride that was! But half a mile later we were on a gravel path. There were sections of loose gravel, but it was mostly rideable.  After just 7 turns in the next 3 miles we were on the Waterfront Bike Trail.

Lorna (today's SAG driver) was at the 15 mile point checking us off on her clipboard and offering us water and snacks. Checking all of us in at once is sort of like herding cats, but she managed well.

The Waterfront Trail runs along the shore of Lake Ontario and we had lovely views off to our left most of the day. Our pages and pages of cues were backed up by the trail signs along our route--it will be pretty spectacular when (if?) it is finished, providing a car-free bike experience the entire shoreline of the lake.


We were warned that there was a washout on the trail, but this construction barrier looked like a little more than a washout. So we sent a scout ahead to see why the trail was barricaded; it was indeed closed at a road construction site. We went on the surface streets to bypass the construction and got back on the Waterfront Trail.

We rode through a few more sections of gravel, took about a dozen more turns, and ended up at the beach. Cy was there and took our photos. This really was a very good day despite the many cues and turns we encountered.


We stayed along the lovely Lake Ontario shoreline off and on the rest of the day. After the second SAG stop Dianne, FL Ann and I left ahead of the rest of the group. It worked out alright because there were so many turns and cues that it would have been hard to keep so many people together.

As we approached Toronto we encountered heavy traffic when we were off the trail.  Fortunately most of the trail into the city is completed. We arrived at our hotel around 3:30, put our bikes in the storeroom allotted to us (bikes not allowed in the rooms), and went to dinner with the group at 6:00.

We had dinner at the Old Spaghetti Factory, where I had dinner with daughter Erika's fifth grade class almost 30 years ago! While there Mary and NJ Ann demonstrated their biking grimace. Mary is new at touring and Ann is experienced, so she is sharing her hard-won knowledge with those among us new to bike touring; a good grimace is important!

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