Wednesday, August 05, 2009

New asphalt on Camellien Houde climb

The switchback climb through the Parc Mont Royal to the canyon on top

Cyclist doing the smart thing: checking for cars behind him in the narrow Camellien Houde canyon.

New asphalt, but the narrow road situation didn't change - cars need to slow down!

Montreal's most popular hill climb is Camellien Houde, which rides up the east side of Mont Royal from the plateau up through a narrow canyon to the top.

This is the site of the annual cycling world cup race, and it is a great ride and a jewel in the heart of the city.

Unfortunately, it also had some old asphalt that had decayed a lot!

Good news: sections of Camellien Houde have been repaved, and one section is the summit section through the narrow canyon at the top of the stiff climb up the east side of the mountain.

Woohoo! Thank you Ville de Montréal.

Now, we don't want to see ungrateful, but we ask if (please) can we have some reduced speed limit signs through the narrow canyon section?

Not only is the street narrow (the road shoulder disappears forcing cyclists onto the main roadway), but it is a blind corner, and there is a very popular turnoff just after the canyon which often completely blocks the road - surprise!

One surprise for car drivers is the presence of cyclists in the canyon, and we have seen some high-speed car drivers doing dangerous passing of cyclists through this narrow and blind-corner part of this canyon. Near death experiences are guaranteed here if the city doesn't slow down the speeding cars.

Our opinion is that if the city cares about safety, there needs to be a reduced speed limit zone and increased enforcement through the canyon section of this street. We frequently see bicycle-riding cops patrolling the streets on the lookout for unlocked car doors, we suggest they spend some of their day making this dangerous section of road more safe? We think an important use of police resources is to focus on enforcing speed limits at dangerous locations like this. (Hello photo radar?)

Mont Royal isn't just a cyclists' dream-gym, so take the time to visit the lookout at the Mont Royal Chalet. It's one of the best things in Montreal. Last night was one of those perfect days where we the most distant mountains we could see were 100 miles away deep in Vermont. Montreal has a perfect view right through the Lake Champlain Valley. That's not a "near"-perfect view, we said perfect and we mean perfect.


At 4:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

great blog, nice pictures...

Camilien please, not "Camellien"...



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