A cool 12 degrees Celsius (54 Fahrenheit) in the royal city of Guelph this morning. Following the Speed River trail southward, an obligatory covered bridge felt even cooler.
The ride passed through the University of Guelph, a sprawling campus with fall semester underway. Further on, the ride morphs from city suburbs to exurbs to rural, and eventually farmland. And some beautiful horse estates. Eventually, the suburbs started to appear again near the city of Hamilton Ontario, and that’s were the Niagara Escarpment made it’s presence felt. Over the course of about a mile, the elevation plunged about 1000 ft (or 300 meters!) on the appropriately named ‘Snake Road’. A hardstone caprock has resisted erosion over millions of years, causing a ridge that extends from New York to Wisconsin, helping to form the Great Lakes. I saw many bicyclists taking on the uphill challenge this morning… I was quite happy to be riding downhill.
At the bottom of this lush tree covered cliff lies Canada’s Royal Botanic Gardens. The ‘RBG’ is currently hosting a multi-city augmented reality exhibit called Seeing the Invisible… along with a dozen other gardens around the world, including the Denver Botanic Gardens.
I briefly checked out the garden visitor center and said ‘hello to RBG from DBG’. And then it was time to move along to the shores of Lake Ontario, the third Great Lake of the journey. First Burlington Beach, and then, crossing the channel to Hamilton Beach, another bridge stop, this time a lift bridge.
Being a dry-lander, it’s kinda cool to see a bridge lifted up so tall boats can pass under. Then the bridge slowly dropped back into place and I appreciatively cycled across. With the lift bridge behind me, it was a nice cruise along the lakeshore bikeways and roadways, hugging the western coast of Lake Ontario. Finally, our destination town of Port Dalhousie was reached and we checked into a fun and eclectic establishment called the Juniper Inn, right next to Lakeside Park… a perfect place for a late afternoon paddleboard excursion.
112 kilometers (70 miles) total. Sunshine and mostly clear skies at the finish. Hoping for one more beautiful day to wrap up this 2022 segment of the Coast-to-Coast cycling (and paddle boarding) adventure.
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