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Archive for the ‘Bike Infrastructure’ Category

This past weekend I visited my parents who live on Hamilton mountain. For various reasons, the best plan was for me to take the GO train to Aldershot, and then to ride the rest of the way. The route that I chose was part of the HamBur loop. I rode a variation of this trail during Bike for Mike a couple of years ago.

Here’s my ride for the day.

The first part of the ride was down Waterdown Rd to North Shore Blvd, cutting through a cemetery, connecting on Spring Garden Rd, and then taking a trail up to York Blvd. This is the first tricky part of the trail, where you have to cross a high speed off ramp from the 403.

After you cross the high level bridge that you can see in the image above, you need to look to the left for the connection to the waterfront trail. This connection is circled on this map.

What is not clear on most mapping apps is that the connection involves 200 stairs. Here is a cyclist just having come up to York Blvd.

Here are the stairs.

The payoff is that instead of riding into town on busy York Blvd, you get to use the waterfront trail. The last time I came this way was at night, in the company of several hundred Hamilton Glowriders.

Crossing downtown is easy along Ferguson Street. You can take it south almost to the foot of the escarpment.

I did note on the way south that Cannon St. was being resurfaced, and as a result, the bi directional bike lanes were out of action.

Here is the start of the trail up the escarpment. It follows a section of the Bruce Trail, and is extremely gradual.

Here the trail crosses Wentworth St.

From this point forward the surface is rough asphalt and some gravel, but no worse than some roads in Toronto I could mention. The trail takes you fairly far to the east by the time you crest the escarpment.

You are on fully separated bike trails all the way to Stone Church Rd. Here is the bridge across the Lincoln Alexander Expressway.

Here the trail ends at Stone Church Rd.

Stone Church has a bike lane and is a good way to get across the mountain in the East West direction. There is signage here pointing to the Chippewa rail trail, but that is an adventure that has to wait for another day.

One side note about gear: my Brompton as a red Selle Anatomica saddle, and I noticed after my ride today that the colour is still bleeding a bit. Better stick to dark pants for long rides on this saddle.

If you are interested in the Ham Bur loop, the Bike for Mike people still have their version up on Ride with GPS.

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I’m in the bicycling paradise that is Vancouver for the next week or so, and I just wanted to post a few quick pix from downtown that I took yesterday.

I note that most of the Mobi bike share bikes that I see do not have a helmet locked up with them.

There is a helmet law here, and I noticed these helmet liners at the bike stand.

Not a great look, but it looks like I’m ready to rent a helmet, or to prep some food.

The other thing that I noticed while waiting for a bus on Nelson just leading up to the Cambie Bridge is how nicely the bus stand is integrated into the bike infrastructure. There were many cyclists zooming by as I waited.

There is actually a lot to unpack in this picture. In the distance, you can see that overall, about 1.5 traffic lanes have been given over to bike infra, and that at the next intersection, there is a left turn lane for cars that is still separated from the bike lane by a curb. Here is a Google street view of that intersection.

Pretty nice when the best we can hope for in Toronto is green paint with a solid white line.

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The Banff Legacy Trail is a trail that goes from the end of the Bow Valley Parkway, through the Banff townsite, to the eastern border of the park. It also extends further east outside the park to Canmore. Today we rented a couple of bikes to do the round trip from Banff to Canmore.

Here is where the eastern section of the trail starts, just off Banff Ave.

Certainly can’t complain about the scenery.

Midori is excited about her e-bike.

Here we are at a rest stop/picnic area about halfway to Canmore. FYI there are restrooms here.

My rental is a bit lighter than my usual ride.

The trail ends here at the park boundary, but keeps on going an additional 4.5 km to Canmore.

The end of the trail at the Alberta information centre.

Lots of families getting ready to ride the trail.

This guy looks ready to do it on his Big Wheel.

Dad gives a little assist.

More beautiful scenery on the way back to Banff.

Once back in town, the easiest way to get back to downtown is along Banff Ave. You can see some very faded sharrows.

Work crews have been working the past few days to put in new ones that are much more visible.

The round trip was about 45 km. Very pleasant.

I decided to supplement the ride by going along Vermilion Lakes Rd to the western section of the trail.

Once again, you can’t complain about the scenery.

The road ends after about 5 km, and the Legacy trail further for about another 2 km.

There are two wildlife gates to separate the section of trail that is on the highway side of the fence.

Right along the highway here.

The trail ends at the off ramp for Hwy 1A, AKA the Bow Valley Parkway. Cyclists fitter than I can continue onwards to Lake Louise and beyond.

Not exactly sure how I picked up so much lube from the chain. Thanks to Backtrax for the rental.

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Just a few quick notes. Bikebike Northeast is coming up soon this Victoria Day weekend, and there was a crew at Charlie’s Freewheels working on some event prep.

Unfortunately I had to leave before the real work started.

On the way home, I hadn’t been on the Richmond bike lanes for a while and I noted a lot of improvements in the green paint markings. Also a bit shout out to this condo construction area just east of Bay, where they had marked out both a bike lane and a pedestrian pathway with cones.

They had even filled in the street car track a bit with asphalt.

I don’t know if this was a result of the contractor doing the right thing, or increased oversight by the city, but in any case seeing these accommodations for one of the most heavily used pieces of bike infrastructure in the city was heartening.

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A sunny morning brings out the fair weather cyclists. #30daysofbiking

Lappin Avenue
Hallam St.
Shaw St.
Harbord St.

Ride safe everyone!

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Today was the annual “coldest day of the year ride”, even though it was clearly not the coldest day of the year (that would have been Wednesday or Thursday). This year’s ride was to be along Bloor/Danforth, to draw attention to the need for an extension of bike lanes in both the east and west directions. The ride started at Danforth and Logan, and a few of use decided to ride to the ride from High Park. Here are local stalwarts Janet Joy and John, along with Alex.

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On our way east, we picked up Laura and José.

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The Bloor bike lane being what it can be after inadequate snow clearance, sometimes it was better to be in the traffic lane.

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Now across the Prince Edward Viaduct. I think this is the first year where the city has left the flexiposts in place, which is great.

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Trying to stay out of the door zone on the Danforth.

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Now we arrive at Logan to be greeted by the sight of a very large crowd.

Keegan from CycleTO gets thing started. She tells us about a contest that is being run in conjunction with special winter edition Bikeshare bikes.

special winter edition paint scheme

Next up: Jared Kolb. He reminds us of the theme of today’s ride: Groundhog Day. Last year’s ride started at the same point, and just like last year, we are still calling for the installation of a Minimum Grid of bike infrastructure across the city.

Next, Toronto Danforth MP Julie Dabrusin. She apologized for not riding with us, but she had a broken arm. She said that the federal government is fully prepared to work in partnership with the city to install what ever the city decides.

Finally, Councillor Brad Bradford. It is obvious from the way he dresses that he is a real cyclist. He called for safer streets.

Now off we go, complete with police escort.

Back across the viaduct.

That’s a lot of cyclists.

Doug and Honey
Rob Z and Janet Joy discussing bike infra.

Ironically, at the pace we were riding, and with a bike traffic jam, it was possible to pass the entire pack by using the bike lane.

I enjoyed talking with the fellow from France who was riding a truly nice 650B bike with 853 tubing, dynamo lighting, etc etc.

Approaching Dundas West, almost at the end of the ride.

The ride ended at the Wicket, just short of Indian Rd. Here is Doug and Honey again.

Another gratuitous Brompton picture.

After the ride, it was a pleasure to catch up with many of my bike friends, and to meet many more.

Quite a few people elected to use Bikeshare, and I heard that there was a trailer that was going to haul the bikes back downtown. I guess these bikes were still waiting to get picked up.

Thanks to Cycle Toronto for organizing the ride, Bikeshare for providing logistical support, and Toronto Police for the one way escort.

Both Wiarton Willie and Punxsutawney Phil predicted an early spring. Here’s hoping they are right.

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I posted some notes on snow clearance in bike lanes over on Dandyhorse. Almost froze my fingers by repeatedly taking photos while riding around in -17°C weather. Also had to punch in my security code on the phone every time because FaceID wasn’t working for me 😉

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Looking at the weather forecast, maybe we are done with the polar vortex after today.

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