Sunday, September 04, 2016

Chemins Craig et Gosford paradise ride


We always have a list of new places to ride and discover. Since we have explored within two hours of Montreal, any new explorations mean we have to get up early on the weekend, which you can be a challenge!

But every once in a while we're up early, and we have a new destination, and we get there and we get on the bike... and it's not the paradise we desire.

But sometimes everything comes together, and we find ourselves on a bike ride that has everything we want: good roads, interesting terrain, good scenery, history, quiet roads, nice villages, and good weather. And distance. If a ride is good, more of it can make it great. Some rides have a few nice parts that you have to link together, but a great ride, well, it should have a very high great:ungreat ratio.

And a great ride must NOT have certain things: no rude interruptions like bad road quality, busy traffic, or any big-town commerce: we want to get away from civilization. (seing the same McDo, Timmy, and other corporate brands do not make a village or town better from the scenic perspective). You can relax, this ride had non of that sh1t.

But that's not all we need for a great ride. The bike has to be working great. And the legs must be working great, because, like we said, you want to keep riding, riding, and riding some more.

So that little discourse on the philosophy of a great ride brings us to today's ride.

Last year we read a Montreal Gazette historico-travel feature about "Quebec's Celtic Way." It sounded interesting, and the part of our brain that identifies potential bike ride was going beep-beep-beep. This usually means that we had better get there and see what conditions "on the ground" are like. Because this area sure sounded optimized for bike riding.

So would this ride turn out to be good or bad? Would we discover paradise? Or hell on wheels?

We think you know the answer.

We found bike paradise. Woohoo!

The ride is in two tourist "regions": Coeur du Quebec and Chaudiere Appalaches, as well it is just north of the Eastern Townships region.

This is a ride in three parts:
  1. Route Verte rail-to-trail between Princeville to Lyster (30 km NE on flat Route Verte)
  2. Chemins Craig et Gosford going SW through quiet hilly scenic awesome back roads
  3. Rt 263 north, back to Princeville
The route Verte section is a good warmup, there were atractions in he villages: a caboose in Plessiville, and an original train station in Lyster.


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