Secret Back Roads

I get a grand tour of Meaford in the morning by John Barker, whose family has a long history on this part of Lake Huron, starting with the apple business. Wonderfully, I get to have a peaceful start for the first 35 kilometers from Meaford to Collingwood. A former rail line has been transformed into a well groomed bicycle path from one city to the other.

The only challenge was the first kilometer where the trail was getting a fresh layer of crushed limestone, which had yet to be compacted.

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It is a beautiful trail where the trees often form a protective canopy for the rider.

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The trail has a nice simple signage system, something I would love to see on other bike trails.

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And Collingwood has a nice bike themed mural.

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After Collingwood, I follow county roads through farms and battle a bit of a headwind and heat.

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After cycling about 60 km, I am met by Pearson Year 14 Alum and Pearson College Trustee, Michael Gordon. He is a serious competitive cyclist who shows me a back roads route to his home in Orillia. He trains many hours on these roads and hills and he nearly placed first in a recent 100 mile race on these very same roads.

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It was a long hot day on the road as evidenced by the crusts of salt on the back of my cycling jersey.

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I get replenished with a lovely dinner with Michael and his partner, also a Pearson Alum, PC Year 15, Michelle Gordon. We take a walk later through the very alive city of Orillia, with a beautiful marina and collection of parks and trails.

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Mike and his son, Matthew, pose with their faces in holes on a painted sail.

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And the sun sets after a long day and I head off soon to sleep.

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Stats – for Thursday 19 July 2012

Start: Meaford
Finish: Orillia
Distance: 129 km
Time on Bike: 6 hrs 45 min
Average Speed: 19.1 km/hr
Distance to Date: 5,379 km

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2 thoughts on “Secret Back Roads

  1. Today, I went to the beachfront with my kids. I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is entirely off topic but I had to tell someone

  2. I am eagerly awaiting a blog telling us how you will cross to the UK as it seems so close now. Continuing to be inspired by your posts. It’s like a drip feed book I’ve been reading all summer. Loving the photos and stories. Rach

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