Sunday, September 10, 2006

A handy guide to Olmsted Road on Mt Royal

The dirt road that winds its way up Mount Royal is called Olmsted road, after the designer of Mont Royal Park, Frederick Law Olmsted. He also did Central Park, Candlestick park, and many other urban parks.

This road winds its way up through open fields, forests, even lakes (!), on the way to the summit of Mt Royal.

Here's a handy distance table to let you know how far it is to get to the top. This information was published in the Sunday Sept 10 2006 La Presse newspaper, on the subject of the Montreal Marathon. They provided numerous (non-marathon) running ideas and locations in Montreal.

I signed up for a La Presse subscription at the a Montreal bike show last winter, and I can now conclude that La Presse is a hugely better newspaper than the pathetic Montreal Gazette. The Gazette has almost no local content, the news section, (first section) is oftern news-free for several pages as the print pages full of ads, sometimes with 50 words of news ina corner of the page. I am sure the Gazette makes oodles of money, too bad they don't spend any of it on quality local content. I strongly recommend reading La Presse. They even have local cycling coverage that isn't racing oriented.

OK, here's the table of Olmsted Road distances

0 km Start / at Park Avenue/statue
1.0 km 2nd hairpin /behind McGill Residences/Victoria hospital & downtown shortcut
1.4 km 3rd hairpin
2.0 km start of plateau - road flattens out above downtown
2.3 km Stairs up to Mont Royal Chalet/downtown lookout or down to Peel street
2.7 km Abreuvoir (watering hole)
3.5 km first Summit on road / location is at Beaver Lake (great sunsets here)
4.0 km Maison Smith / Smith House - Mt Royal museum & Les Amis de la Montagne
4.5 km intersection of road - left to Summit or right to Mont Royal Chalet & lookout
5.0 km Scenic viewpoint on road to Summit (after 2nd hairpin corner)
5.5 km The Summit!!! You can now jump and cheer!
6.5 km (approx) continue around summit loop road back to Mt Royal Chalet lookout


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