Whether you want sedate riding or challenging rides, you have quite a few options. I'll give you a few:
– Riding around town, or between the neighbourhoods of Chicoutimi and Jonquière (about 10 km West, with a few road options), or to La Baie (15 km East). The Saguenay valley is rather deep, so riding along the riverfront isn't too challenging but riding away from the river is quite challenging. Neighbourhoods range from industrial to working class to luxurious; ancient (1930-1940) to modern.
– The Véloroute des bleuets : the stretch from Chicoutimi to Alma is either nice and challenging (not well designed bike path as far as I've read), or gently rolling and boring (via highway 170). Then from Alma to Alma, the circle around the lake is about 250 km. Some do it in one day, but I would suggest you do it in two days, visit Val Jalbert and enjoy the scenery. The Northern side of the lake is relatively intact (i.e. enjoy the scenery) and the Southern side is more developped (enjoy the sites).
– Riding away from the river, towards places like La Terrière, mont Valin, Saint-Fulgence. These are usually paved routes with brutal hills. Not much traffic, except when everybody wants to go to their cottage.
– If you have plenty of time towards the end, you might decide on a loop. Roughly speaking, from Chicoutimi, go east towards the neighbourhood of La Baie. Then:
- Highway 381 South to Ferland-et-Boilleau (tiny hamlet; no food) and Saint-Urbain; no service along the road, but just enough traffic so you won't get stuck in an emergency.
- Highways 138, then 362 from Baie-Saint-Paul to La-Malbaie (superb shoreline).
- Highway 138 East to Baie-Sainte-Catherine
- Highway 170 West to Chicoutimi.
Expect lots and lots of hills
, in the 12-18% range; the scenery is simply breathtaking.
If you want some riding partners, I would suggest you visit the Vélocia forum
(a French forum). There are a few participants from the Saguenay area (Marmalade or Marmelade is one that comes to mind) who would be eager to to a couple of interesting road rides.