Friday, April 06, 2012

Le Québec en 30 Boucles #8 Ormstown-Rockburn-Powerscourt

Blue sky, scenic and smooth country roads, this ride never disappoints.

The new guidebook Le Quebec en 30 Boucles is written based on favorite rides submitted by readers of Quebec's VeloMag magazine. It has, you guessed it, 30 rides! All levels, distances and the rides are located all across the giant-sized province/nation of Quebec.

So natch we selected one of the closest-to-Montreal rides, which happens to also be our homeland. And for a change, we followed the ride map precisely. It was easy: there are only six corners on the whole ride.

Well actually we didn't. We snipped off some distance at the start of the ride (by starting in Ormstown) and at the end of the ride (by going no farther west than Powerscourt covered bridge). This gave a good distance for a first-rides-of-the-season type ride, where maximum distance is not required. And adaptation to the bike position and seat and muscular requirements start fresh after winter's generally non-bike season.

This ride has several aspects that combine to give it a AAA quality rating

Smooth roads (very few frost heaves or bad sections)
often newly paved roads
rural countryside scenery, (aucun tims, mcdos, etc.)
quiet roads
very clean roads (in spring, many rides have shit covered road edges and shoulders)
scenic farmland with plenty of farms 100-160 years old
Several ecological zones
60 minutes from Montreal
easy directions to get to start of ride
many scenic villages
Quebec's oldest covered bridge
view of mountains across the US border
Rockburn sideroad has been called the best cycling road in Quebec
Triangle-shaped region has lots of different rides and route/distance variations

Chateauguay river at Powerscourt covered bridge, fresh from the USA

1861 pont Percy bridge is Quebec's oldest covered bridge.

Completely renovated and fully reopened last October 2011.

Perfect road. Perfect perfect perfect road.

Montée Rockburn sideroad is a paradise for bikes.

Sometimes we do a short ride which is basically just go south to the end of the road at chemin First Concession (south of Rockburn), then turn around and ride (downhill!) back to ormstown. Woohoo. Pure fun.

A lot of snow geese.

We saw a lot of geese today. It's one more benefit of an early season ride.

total distance 62 km. Park at the IGA in Ormstown. Excellent maps of the region are available free inside the mall at the self-serve tourist kiosk.

Conclusion, a very successful ride.


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