Biking Ottawa to Montreal – Day 2: Hawkesbury to Montreal!
I thought my legs wouldn’t recover after the first day of riding, but they were fine. Not even a hint of lingering heaviness. The biggest challenge of day one was the heat and the sun rather than muscle fatigue. My sunscreen was just melting off my skin on day one. Our second day of riding called for the opposite – rain. It even rained while we ate our breakfast. It wasn’t looking good. But by the time we had polished off our yogourt and bacon, the rain had retreated. Success.
While the day started out with low lying cloud and mist on the water, the sun eventually came out and stayed for the rest of the ride. Unlike day one, the ride from Montreal took us through lots of shady streets and trails. Day one and day two were completely different rides. Day two was easy. Easy. There was lots to see and we passed through many quaint towns. I would do day two again, no questions!
One of the interesting things about this trip is that all the participants are from Montreal except for me. That’s right. They all took the train to Ottawa in order to ride back to Montreal. I am the lone Ottawan. And for that matter, lone anglophone! I’m actually really enjoying my mini weekend french immersion. I don’t pick up all of the lingo, but here’s one of the best sayings I heard:
“Un jour à merlot, un jour à vélo.”
I feel fortunate to have been with such a good group of people.
Back to riding. A lot of the roads had shoulders, which made road riding feel so much better.
Here I am trying to draft behind some of the road bikes. It’s hard to draft a dutch bike.
The trip had a lot of things to see, including many mansions.
Along the way, we saw bike infrastructure that makes big box suburban design, seem human. Take for example this bi-directional bikeway in Pointe-Claire:
In fact, the entire Lachine pathway is a great way to get to the city.
And along the Lachine Canal, instead of steps like at the Ottawa lockstations, they have handy ramps. Here’s a mom and daughter getting their bikes across with no lugging or struggling. Civilized.
My riding group had talked about getting ice cream at Atwater since the 80km mark… it was worth the effort to get there.
In another group that traveled from Quebec City, there was a woman who rode her Brompton (you know, to make the ride a little more interesting). I can understand that.
Need the Strava proof? Voila!