Sunday, May 31, 2009

Today's ride: Louiseville to St-Alexis des Monts - to Lac a l'Eac Claire (and back!)

We got a lot of good rides from this bike map of the Maskinongé part of la Mauricie region

The goal: Lac a l'Eau Claire

Today we will head to a start at Louiseville, then ride north, and then north some more to Lac a l'Eau Claire (lake of clear water).

If we are felling full of energy, we will take a side-trip to Hotel Lac Sacacomie, which has one thing: one of the steepest, longest hills in Quebec outside of the Charlevoix. Not so fun uphill, but it's a screamer of a downhill! By screamer we don't mean danger, because we think it's quite a safe hill in the lack-of-dangers department. We scream because we are having so much fun.

We have not done this particular route before, the ride between Louiseville and St-Alexis des Monts we have done in a south (return home) direction, this is the first time we head north on this route.

Here's the link to the map on Bikely (many variations are possible on the southern part of the route). The ride is 45 km each way, but the northern, uphill 45 km are probably going to be a lot slower than the return-back-south and downhill direction!

Gotta go!

Update: the rain came as e arrived in Louiseville, so we started inland a bit at Ste-Angele de Prémont - and the rain stayed away for the rest of the day!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Today's montreal bike ride pics

The classic view from the Mt Royal Chalet plaza lookout on downtown and not-so-distant mountains.

Parc St-Viateur pond, chalet, and floating art thing

Very unusual fence

Uh-oh, a cut bicycle lock is not good news

Road kill...?

New north of Mt Royal bike path to extend further west

Good news for anyone who has been waiting, oh, forever, for the north-of-Mont-Royal bike path.

The city has announced that the east-west bike path north of the mountain, which has begun with the bike path on Cote-Ste-Catherine road, will be extending westward... all the way beyond Cavendish. Wow!

A bike path corridor along this corridor has been long overdue, and we are pleased as pie to see the completion of this corridor this year.

Now, speaking about long overdue: how about a north-south axis west of Mt Royal (NDG)? This axis is also long overdue, since north-south routes are particularly missing in the west end, what with the train yeard, the 13 and the airport blocking north south traffic that isn't car-based.

But for now, we'd like to celebrate this excellent news of the north-of-Mont-Royal axis.

Quebec's new Photo Radar - Free photos for three months!

We know that as cyclists, Quebec's new photo radar and red-light cameras will not be sending us any tickets anytime soon. But we do hope it slows down some cars because we all know that accidents that occur at speeds over 50 km/h have a much greater chance of death than accidents at slower speeds.

For the first three months the cameras will be sending you the ticket and photo without any fine, as an educational act to encourage appropriate behavioural changes among the car-driving population.

Which brings up this interesting idea. Will anyone be collecting these free tickets? The locations of the fixed-location red light and speeding cameras are well publicized. You can go and drive by, at an unnecessarily fast and illegal speed, and get a free souvenir in the mail a few days later.

Collect the entire set!

We really do not encourage this wanton recklessness. Really, we do not.

Friday, May 29, 2009

We got our permis de conduire Plus

In order to maintain our Canadian-citizen access to the USA, we just got a Permis de conduire Plus from the SAAQ.

Translation for non-quebecers: We just got our US Homeland Security-approved driver's license with a chip inside (a puce in french) which will allow us to make land-crossings across the nearby US border in to America. (We have Vermont, New York, Maine, and New Hampshire to choose from -- it's a pretty good part of the USA).

(Another note to non-quebecers: The SAAQ sells us drivers licenses, the SAQ sells us wine and liquor, the SQ is the provincial police force. it can be useful to know the difference.)

The process went well, but then we did follow the procedures and showed up with the forms completed (and unsigned) and all additional information (basically, a birth certificate).

We were surprised to learn that US Customs will keep our information for file for 75 years. But then, maybe we will live for over 100 years. Some things you just don't know how they'll turn out.

The Permis Plus (as we call it) isn't a passport (you need one of those to enter the USA via an airplane), and we do prefer not to be a uber-polluter with air travel. Nor do we look forward to getting ripped off $150 bucks each way to carry a bike on a plane. Or have to pay extortionate "airport facility charges" just for the privilege of walking through the airport to the plane.

We forgot to mention, our incentive is the fact that after June 1, 2009, Canadians must have a passport or Permis-plus type drivers license in order to cross the US Border into America. Without this proof of citizenship, you should get ready to experience the awesome power of the US Customs to ruin your day. The easy solution is to get a Permis Plus or a passport. So we did.

Read here for news stories on this.

Here is the SAAQ permis plus web page.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Women's world cup bike race - Saturday at noon

The 2009 women's World Cup bike race on Mont Royal starts at noon on Saturday.

These are the world's best, go out and see them. It's one of the biggest and best events of the season.

Click here to see some pictures of last year's race. Better weather is forecast for this year!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

the direction of the deflection

The bike path ends... and cyclists are forced into traffic... and exterminated!

We like most speed bumps on a bike. They can be fun.

They are known as vertical deflections in traffic design lingo. Speed bumps are a type of "traffic calming" which causes cars to slow down (but then they speed up faster to compensate for their time loss).

The interesting thing is the direction of the deflection, speed bumps cause you to go up. On a bike it's easy to manage and not unsafe.

Which brings us to the other direction of deflection. Yes, we’re talking about horizontal deflections.
These are extensions from the curb that extend out into the roadway in order to narrow the street. They are all over Montreal.

The theory is that car drivers perceive a narrower road, so they don't race down at autoroute speeds.
Most horizontal deflections are benign. But there is one where the Cote-Ste-Catherine bike path ends at Villeneuve, and a horizontal deflection thrusts all continuing-east bike traffic on C-St-C road into the car traffic lane.

Now the question is, is this on purpose?

We have been reading the very interesting book "Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us)" by Tom Vanderbilt. In it he looks at traffic, the rules and regulations and looks at how traffic design and engineering try to manage road use and safety, and then compares this to what it is like in the real world. Do traffic safety designs work in the real world?

One insight is that cars go faster when the driver perceives "the coast is clear." SO, the more obstacles that the driver sees, and the more things he sees in HIS lane of traffic, then the driver becomes more cautious (ok, maybe not exactly cautious, but maybe slightly less omnipotent), and the driver slows down.

Slowing down is good. Car accidents can kill. But they kill a lot better when the car is going over 50 km/h. So slowing car speeds on city streets to below 50 km/h is really of critical importance.
Anyone who knows Cote-Ste-Catherine road knows that lots of cars are traveling at speeds above 50 km/h.

So my theory is that this horizontal deflection is designed to make the traffic more complicated, which will make the car driver feel less safe and therefore make them slow down. The result will be a safer street.

Like I said, that's a theory. But frankly, as a cyclist, this thing scares the hell out of me.
Back to the theory: so that means I am scared and I look more carefully around me, and over my shoulder at the cars coming up behind me, and look for gaps in the traffic flow and be more careful!

back to reality...

We suppose that the other reason that this horizontal deflection exists is to make cyclists turn east onto Villeneuve street to join other Plateau paths going south to downtown.

At this point the typical cyclist brain, which is highly tuned to finding the shortest and most direct route to travel, starts ringing the alarm: Detour! Detour!

To us it looks like this path actually ends a few hundred metres before it should.

The reality now is that that many cyclists will continue to travel straight down Cote Ste-Catherine towards Mont Royal Avenue. And these cyclists will all be thrust into the car-traffic lane (aieee!) with this new horizontal deflection. We hope everyone survives this little horizontal ski-jump into the speeding traffic of Cote-Ste-Catherine road.

We believe that this bike path should continue all the way to Mont Royal avenue. That is the logical end to the Cote-Ste-Catherine road bike path. We find Villeneuve to be a very narrow street between Parc and Cote-Ste-Catherine. It barely fits two cars. And there's a hill.

We are happy that we are not the traffic design engineer trying to solve these problems. It's a tough job!

The horizontal deflection at Coco-Rico would be perfect for a much-needed bike parking stand.

2009 montreal bike map?

At the Montreal bicycle show last winter a representative from Vélo-Quebec promised us an updated Montreal-region bicycle path map in May.

It's May, and in fact it's now the the end of May.

And the map at Vélo-Quebec is still the May 2008 version.

Quelle surprise.

Hello Vélo-Quebec... anybody home?

Monday, May 25, 2009

Unidentified flying object

what kind of redneck retard throws stuff at cyclists?

This was an unidentified flying object that landed on the ground as a car passed us near Coaticook last Saturday.

We picked it up and saw it was some sort of toxic beverage marketed to adolescent males.

Ok, now we have identified the object.

Now we need the identity of the a-hole who threw it at us.

It was a white chevy cavalier/pontiac sunfire. That much we know for certain.

We asked this witness if she had seen anything?

Mooo? Mrrrhhh?

Moooooo. Mooooo.

Translation: Males... they were males...

We looked further into the the Fuze brand's products, and discovered that Fuze is not a typical bottled beverage (i.e. three cents of sugar selling for a dollar). They call it a NHP, a "natural health product" (i.e. three cents of sugar and two cents of (horrible-tasting) vitamins selling for three dollars).

Just a minute, my Bull-sh1t detector alarm is ringing, let me go turn it off.

So this means that Coca-Cola (the manufacturer) is cashing in by selling crappy-tasting vitamin-sugar-water to anyone stupid enough to believe that the Coca-Cola company would sell anything that is good for your health.

We are happy to report that these males had poor throwing skills. But if they drink this stuff, they must have good throwing-up skills, cuz this crap sure looks vile.

letter to a friend

I wrote this to my friend…

How are you doing? I just finished up my spring season with a week off from work and I tried to hit some good quebec destinations.

I di dan overnite road trip was a visit to the chaudiere-appalaches area (thetford mines and MRC de Bellechasse SE of quebec city). The best was the new bike path starting 15 km south of Quebec city/Levis, 74 perfectly smooth kilometres called the "Cycloroute de Bellechasse." It is 74 km of perfectly smooth fresh new asphalt, 30 km in fields, 40 km in forest, (very little "roadside" bike path), it starts 15 km south of Levis in St-Henri, and ends in Armagh (actually, 4 km from the village). This is one of the best bike paths I have ever seen!!!! (seriously, this is a really primo bike path!). It opened officially this month, and I had heard about it last year, and after riding it, I can say "wow." I rode it both ways and it was a nice, full day. When I saw the words "new bike path" and "asphalt" and "74 kilometres" all in the same sentence.... I made it a priority destination! I am sure it will be busy and popular, but when I was there, it was still early and was not crowded. I even saw a snowbank at one place!

The othe ride on this trip was a road ride around Thetford mines (part of the trip east with the Bellechasse ride), ok, but now I have done it, no need to go back. (I am trying to do most of the rides in the excellent (and free!) "Guide Velo region Chaudiere Appalaches" that the tourist agency there has created.

I also visited Coaticook->St-Malo for nonstop hills and good scenery and St-malo's 10m high scenic lookout tower, St-malo claims to be the highest town in Quebec at 640 metres elevation. I also made a visit the the Coaticook ice cream plant's ice cream store after the ride was over. I was planning a longer ride with a loop south around East hereford and Ste-hermenegilde, but ran out of time and rode back from St-malo, which was OK, because that is a very scenic ride both directions. (scenic, AND hilly). I have you to thank for giving me an intro to this area. It is also becoming a mountain bike destination with trails development at Mont Hereford. So I also replaced my ancient and inpoerative mtn bike (suspension parts were obsolete since it was pre-modern standards model)

My semi-local (i.e. I can leave home at noon) new explorations for this year is in the western Mauricie, west of Trois Rivieres starting at Yamachiche that goes Yamachiche-> St-Elie-de-Caxton-> St-Paulin-> Louiseville-> Yamachiche, for about 90 km. I did this ride three times this year trying to work out the best route, and I have suceeded very well. I found that the distance/difficulty levels are very nice here for an intermediate distance & difficulty ride, and good scenery.

all for now

Sunday, May 24, 2009

2009 - rides so far

We've been having a great 2009. Lots of good weather, many great rides, and lots of new terain explored.

Here's a recap of our adventures to date:

Coaticook to St-Malo (Sherbrooke area)
Yamachiche to St-Elie-de-Caxton to Louiseville-final version (western Mauricie)
Cycloroute de Bellechasse (south of Quebec City)
Thetford Mines road ride
Tremblant-Riviere Rouge ride
Yamachiche to St-Elie-de-Caxton to Louiseville-2nd exploration (western Mauricie)
Monteregie exploration: St-Jean Baptiste (Mont-St-Hilaire/Rougement)
Tandem bike ride in Magog on Route Verte
North Hatley-Lennoxville-Compton dirt road adventure ride
Yamachiche to St-Elie-de-Caxton to Louiseville-1st exploration (western Mauricie)
Chateauguay valley - Howick to Herdman
Northern Lanaudiere St-Jean-de-Matha to Ste-Emilie-de-l'Energie hills
Ormstown-Powerscourt Chateauguay River/covered bridge ride
Chambly/Mont-St-Hilaire ride
Ormstown-Trout River ride
Ormstown-Athelstan ride with Bro
Ormstown-Athelstan ride solo with flat!

To read more, check out the monthly archive links on the right side of the screen.

Camellien Houde - repairs and new asphalt!

Recent road work to favorite Montreal cyclist hill climb Camillien Houde road has made cyclists happier. The women's road race coming up soon is the reason for these repairs, if it wasn't for this we'd have a really good off-road ride, but with these repairs the street is again desireable for road cyclists.

We encourage EVERYONE to ride up Camellien Houde, it's only hard the first time...

Cycle Fun Montreal thinks that the car speed limit through the canyon on top of Mont Royal should be 20 km/h and there should be BIG signs telling car drivers to be aware of cyclists on this narrow, busy, and unsafe section of Camellien Houde.

Police crackdown (a.k.a. education plan) Spring 2009 now underway

Every year the police start their efforts to get some of Montreal's cyclists to pay for disobeying the law. We expect more tickets than ever before, because Montreal recently upgraded it's municipal courthouses to deal with the increase in tickets for cars, pedestrians, bikes, etc.

Read the story here.

In favourable news, there have been less deaths on Montreal streets!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Coaticook->St-Malo ride

We climbed out of Coaticook valley, and we were thinking: this looks like a good descent!

The route as planned (93km), but time ran out

So we turned around in St-Malo and rode the same route back to Coaticook

Which was OK since it was a great route

Catholic church at St-Malo, altitude 640M

Catholic church at Coaticook, parked car at left (off camera)

Catholic church at St-Edwidge (dep and SAQ here!)

Hills, with a emphasis on long climbs

Lookout tower at St-Malo... one of our favorite rest-stop locations

Our plan was a longer ride, but when we got to St-Malo our remaining available time and the remaining distance did not balance, so we turned around and rode the same road back to Coaticook. The descent into the town of Coaticook is as good as it gets.

This was another great ride, very scenic, good roads, and lots of climbing.

Lots. Of. Climbing.

Great views of the mountains of the eastern townships. A highly recommended ride for anyone wishing to improve their climbing ability, and who can also enjoy excellent scenery.

One final note, even if you have a seriously inflexible time to be back home for other obligations, make sure you stop at the Coaticook Ice Cream factory's ice cream stand for some delicious ice cream--better than beer and legal to eat while driving.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Ride around Circuit Gilles Villeneuve race track

Montreal's strangest real estate

The dome,the dome, bucky's giant dome

Downtown view from point on track where path enters from Pont Victoria Bridge/Voie Maritime bike path.

We went for a little ride around Circuit Gilles Villeneuve today once the sun started to shine. With no F1 grand-prix freakshow this year, there is no race-preparation activities to interfere with excellent car-free cycling.

We rode across the Pont Jacques Cartier bridge to Ile-Sainte-Helene and across the access to Ile Notre Dame where the race track is. Then.... we pedalled, and we pedalled, and then we pedalled harder and faster. As we rode around the track (trying hard to stay over 30 km/h), we did enjoy the excellent views of the downtown Montreal skyline and Mont Royal across the St-laurence river.

Note: the previously free parking at the east side of Ile Notre Dame has been discovered by Parking Montreal, and this means it is now a pay parking lot. Those thieves!

Time to clean up this town

Before: Yuck - get that thing away from me!

Spring is transitioning rapidly into early summer. So why is the Bertrand still covered in spring wet-road sh1t remnants and the chain... Oh the chain! The chain has been absorbing dirt in the oil for months, and is frankly evil.

So we decided to perform an exorcism on the grease-monster living on the chain and give the bike a clean up. Because it gives us so much, and asks so little besides air in the tires and oil on the chain... but not too much oil, or things get nasty, and then you have perform a radical denastification.

So, we let things get nasty, and feeling the intense societal shame that you would expect, we got to work on our own radical denastification procedure.

We used a chain cleaner, some bio-clean juice, a bit of spray degreaser, some rags, old toothbrushes, and of course, some rubber gloves. Do not forget the rubber gloves. If you do forget, there are some great hand-cleaner products available at the hardware store that you should probably keep under the sink.

We also have a rear-wheel stand called a Loby Foot (newer version here but ours is older and simpler and looks a lot more like this Minoura stand) that makes the rotation of the drivetrain easier. It was a bit of a impulse purchase many years ago, but it gets constant use for keeping the bike standing up on its own (i.e. not leaning on something), and we have gotten a lot of excellent use from it. If you have bike-falloveritis, this is your answer.

After, the chain and cassette are shiny-bright (the paint and chrome are another story, but they were nice 21 years ago, and this is a working bike, not a baby)

Bike Wash?

Lock your bike up and get a free wash job?

Rust job is more like it.

We think lawns and automatic lawn irrigation are a crime against nature and good environmental practices. Let's waste ALL our natural resources! Faster! FASTER!!

Velo Quebec cares about Pont mercier bicycle access?

Go here and read about Velo Quebec's efforts to secure bike access to the existing sidewalk on Mercier bridge.

What? Nothing about Pont Mercier? What a surprise. Not really, since Velo Quebec doesn't give a flying potato about Pont Mercier bicycle access.

Like all bureaucracies, when it pretends the problem doesn't exist, then... the problem is solved!

Velo Quebec needs to devote some of its vast resources NOW to get and maintain cyclist access to the Pont Mercier now and during the reconstruction work over the next few years.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Cote-Ste-Catherine road bike path - some finishing touches

The new (and uncompleted and not-yet-officially-opened) Cote-Ste-Catherine road bike path is almost finished.

Finally, we can cross at Villeneuve, previously a death-defying experience (and an Olympique-calibre sprint!)

The new lights at the eastern-end of the path at Villeneuve will begin operation on 8 june, and then cyclists will be easily able cross Cote-Ste-Catherine at this hard-to-cross intersection. Then you descend Villeneuve and you access several north-south bike paths (avenue du parc, ruc Clark/parc-jeanne-mance (& Rachel), St-Urbain, etc.

Notice the narrowed intersection to permit faster pedestrian crossings.

Notice too, the space for a car AND an bike has been reduced to a car OR a bike. How long before a cyclist gets crushed under a car? We blame fad-driven Montreal city traffic planners for a very bad decision. It is a fact that this street is supposed to be a bike-friendly-link between Cote-Ste-Catherine road and the Plateau Montreal. This narrowed-road is NOT bike-friendly.

What it SHOULD be is that new piece of narrow green lawn should be a bike lane, so bikes can get around cars when it is the bikes-walk signal, so bikes and cars do not take this difficult intersection at the same time. Splitting up the traffic flows for the different-speed vehicles (bikes vs cars) makes it safer for everyone.

Anybody listening? Anybody, with the power to change this dangerous design, that is.

Mauricie: Yamachiche->St-Elie-de-Caxton->Louiseville

Yamachiche is full of cute old brick homes

Sunshine and blue sky, 30C temperatures, oh, and 60 km/h west winds!

That's better than chemin Fin-du-Monde!

Naptime... wakeup! Huh?

View of St-Elie-de-Caxton from the Calvaire above the church

We returned to ride our western Mauricie exploration ride of 2009. It's Yamachiche->St-Elie-de-Caxton->Louiseville. Yamachiche is about 15-20 minutes from Trois Rivieres, on the closer-to-Montreal side.

We're getting to know this route pretty good--it's the third time we visit here this spring. Today, with 29C temperatures, was certainly the best of the three.

Here are some churches, at least two we passed are not pictured, at Louiseville and St-Paulin.

Non-trad village church in Ste-Angele-de-Premont

On top of the calvaire at the catholic church in St-Elie-de-Caxton (a fun (but respectful) summit climb and not to be missed! Access is via the road on the far side of cemetary.

Church at Ste-Ursele

Church at St-Thomas-de-Caxton

Church at Yamachiche, our regular starting point for this ride.
It looks like Minister Robot from Futurama.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Vacation road trip #2: Mauricie

We packed and ready for a two day trip to the Mauricie.

Day one we will return for another ride of the Yamachiche / St-Elie-de-Caxton / Louiseville circuit of earlier this year, and day two we will do a big loop ride in and out of the Parc de La Mauricie.

That's the plan.

Once again, we have been assured that rain has been prevented... So it is time to get outside and work on the second thousand kilometres of our 2009.

East Hereford mtn bike trails 2009 map available

get the pdf here

The developing area of East Hereford (SE of Coaticook) for mountain biking has 2009 version of trail maps at this link.

Remember that this is a fairly isolated area, and don't go out without a bit of a plan B emergency kit like a first aid kit and a rain jacket and maybe a mini survival kit. Or, maybe we worry too much.

Anyway, check out this destination, we like it for road riding too.

P'tit train du Nord

The P'tit train du Nord is up and running after the spring repair and drying-out season.

The website has lots of info, and lots of info on what is available where (km by km!) on the trail. That's good to know since the trail is 200 km long!

We like the zoomable map, it matches the one in the excellent free guidebook for the trail. Now you can browse without getting the guidebook, we like this.

Our plan this summer (is is summer yet?) is to ride Mont-Laurier-Montreal using this path, and we have a delusion that we can do it in one day. Uh-huh, we'd better get some medication for this delusion.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

new bike path signs

We are seeing better and better bike path signage.

Here's some recent sightings.

An unhelpful bike path sign, where the %#@$! are we?

A little historical info is always useful.

Snowshoe crossing- lookout!

Map of Thetford Mines bike path, no grafitti and a useful "You are here" sign.

Path entrance at Tourism Amiante ofice near Black Lake

Clear insructions. Obedience is another question entirely!

This sign instructs pedestrians to walk facing the cyclists - so everybody can see everybody else, and it says "bike have priority over pedestrians, everybody adapts a little, and everybody has a safe fun day. The bike path name is cute.

Here's one we never saw before:

Translation: Bear Crossing.


We return from our Chaudiére-Appalache bike ride road trip

We had the guidebook.

We had selected the rides.

We had gas in the car.

We had a weather forecast that denied the possibility of rain.

We were off to another road trip to the Chaudiére-Appalache region. This region is located south (and southeast and southwest) of Quebec city. It has both river- and sea-side landscape, and inland you have big river valley (the beauce), and inland hill country. Our visit this time was the hilly inland area. First we visited Thetford Mines (good but cool and windy) and the next day we visited the Veloroute de Bellechasse, which is a rails-to-trail bike path which exceeded out very high expectations.

Get this free guidebook. Then go explore the Chaudière-Appalaches region this summer. It's one of Québec's cycling paradises.

Read the next posts below for our trip reports for each ride.

Tour of Thetford Mines

Approaching the town of Thetford Mines near the end of ride

Our other ride destination on this Chaudiere-Appalaches region trip was to do a ride around the asbestos-mining region of Thetford Mines.

Driving south of Autoroute 20 you can really tell you have left the St-laurence lowlands behind. You are in the Appalachian Mountains, and it the natural scenery is beautiful. And then you get close to Black Lake (technically part of municipality of Thetford Mines) and you understand the Mines part of the name.

There are mountains here, but the the scenery is highly un-natural. Believe it or not, this was part of the attraction of coming here.

We parked at the "Tourism Amiante" centre near Black Lake which is located on the highly-excellent Thetford Mines municipal bike path.

We got dressed warm and then we rode to Black Lake, then out a bit to the chemin Vimy Ridge. This was a optional route version: a quiet road with lots of steep twistys. It was a bit rugged, but it was better than being on the busy 112 (the 112 did have excellent paved shoulders for cycling).

We reached the village of Coleraine, then south to Disraeli. This is the SW corner of the ride, and we got a bit confused to get going east on Chemin de Barrage, but it wasn't a problem except our brr-brrr-brain was just a bit frozen!

Then it is east along Lac St-Francois all the way until reaching the Rt 287, which we took for a short bit until back on quiet back roads to come into Thetford Mines proper. Very scenic section. In Thetford we got back on the municipal bike path and rode back to the car away from traffic - nice path!

This ride is from the map in the Guide Velo region Chaudiere-Appalaches and it had been on our list for a while. For road riders, the Rt 112 through here would be a good ride also.

We had supper and went east on the Rt 112 to the Beauce and camping at Camping municipal St-Joseph-de-Beauce, which was closed. Uh-oh. So we guerilla-camped in the back of the station-wagon, in the back of an apartment building parking lot, which we pulled in to after getting everything all set up, so we just had to park the car, exit the drivers door and enter the rear passenger door, very very discreet.

The tourist lookout at the Black Lake mine - a very exposed view!

Little historical relic (relique?) in Thetford

The lookout has LOTS of exposure-the woman was frozen in place and would NOT get any closer to the windows.

Tiny machinery at the bottom of the pit

A look dooooooown in to the Black Lake pit from the "belvidere d'observation de la mine a ciel ouvert," located just south of Black Lake on the Rt 112 towards Coleraine

Excellent municipal bike path through Thetford Mines

the one thing we didn't expect: a grain silo(!?!)

Disraeli eglise

Un-natural mountain scenery

Click here for a map of the ride from the guidebook.

The next day was the exploration of the Veloroute de Bellechasse.