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Toronto: My First Time...

Old 06-11-05, 08:39 AM
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.. being drafted. I feel so... "leet"! I sorta have to put this in perspective, however. I do long distance tours. Nothing to me is more enjoyable than finding roads that aren't taken (back roads, farmer's roads, etc.) so primarily in the summer and winter I train for my meager week to two week long tours that I do. I'm not particularly fast, averaging about 18-22KM/hr (depending on mood, wind, road conditions and star alignment). I'm often passed by "roadies" (those that are truly into speed, either for personal enjoyment or racing).

On my way back to downtown I took Lakeshore, a relatively flat road with one or two rolling hills. This can sometimes mean I hit speeds of 25-27km/hr. Along side the road is the MUT. As I was going eastbound I saw two female roadies on the MUT, side-by-side yapping. I figured they were part of the Gear Bike Shop Road Team/Group that had passed me earlier in the morning and were on the way back doing a warm-down ride. So passing them didn't mean much to me on my Devinci Patriot MTB. I was so focused on maintaining my cadence that I was rather surprised to here, "Behind you on your wheel". I had heard their voices but had thought they were going to pass. Imagine my surprise in that they were drafting me! ME! Slow me! I looked at my speed then and realized that I had actually hit 31KM/hr. So I tried to focus on maintaining my speed and staying away from the potholes (since I know raod bikes wheels are less forgiving with those). I'd check periodically to see if they were there (they were!).

We aproached an intersection where the light turned yellow was I went through but noticed that I lost my two "in-tow". I wasn't sure what the proper procedure is for this kind of thing (since I've never been part of a draft, behind or in front). Should I have stopped or not? I figured they must have gone into Gears (which was at that intersection) since I didn't see them as I continued.

This is certainly turning out to be a decent weekend. I wonder what tomorrow's 100KM ride will bring up for fun and excitement!
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Old 06-11-05, 01:27 PM
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I hate riding on MUTs... only on TBN rides ... only on TBN rides...
The "scenery" sure is nice by the lakeshore though.
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Old 06-11-05, 01:57 PM
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The "scenery" sure is nice by the lakeshore though.
Yup and cooler (something nice during this hot and humid stretch)
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Old 06-11-05, 02:58 PM
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Oh yeah, it's so hot I just randomly yell it's so hot while riding down the street. Oh man. And i'm tanned to heck and back.

Did you end up doing any TBN rides?
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Old 06-11-05, 03:00 PM
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Did you end up doing any TBN rides?
Naw... With visitors and training for my "mini-tour" next weekend, haven't had a chance.
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Old 06-11-05, 04:55 PM
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What are TBN and MUT?

Sounds like fun. Gears is only one store but they have such a mammoth sponsorship/fan base/whatever you call it.
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Old 06-11-05, 05:07 PM
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TBN=Toronto Bicycling Network

MUT=Multi Use Trail
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Old 06-12-05, 08:15 AM
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I don't mind the MUT at all, except when it is most crowded.

BTW what do you think of the trail on the north side of lakeshore to the east? I took it yesterday, and it's definitely faster than the lakefront trail (several km shorter), and smoother. I hope they put in a few more trees for shade though.
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Old 06-12-05, 09:04 AM
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Trails are all crap. For some real riding, get north of the city and ride some country roads.
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Old 06-12-05, 09:38 AM
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For some real riding, get north of the city and ride some country roads.
That I can agree with. I took McCowan out until the sign that says "Whitchurch-Stouffville". I wanted to continue further but decided to be wussy and turned around. Although, IMO, 80KM for about 3 and half hours isn't too bad for me.


Trails are ok during the week when there are fewer people on them, particularly those outside of the core (they have a smoother pavement and I can attest that Danforth -- which has some temp pavement patches -- is incredibly annoying on the butt).
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Old 06-12-05, 10:08 AM
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Originally Posted by operator
Trails are all crap. For some real riding, get north of the city and ride some country roads.
I disagree trails are NOT crap I use them to get to work and as connection routes for bike rides along the lake to get a break from street riding and to get away from cars for abit and enjoy a nice ride along the lake and your saying that peeps that use trails are not really riding
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Old 06-12-05, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by STEEKER
I disagree trails are NOT crap I use them to get to work and as connection routes for bike rides along the lake to get a break from street riding and to get away from cars for abit and enjoy a nice ride along the lake and your saying that peeps that use trails are not really riding
That's exactly what i'm saying. I laugh at all the euro-pro wannabe racers riding on the trail with their zipp 404 wheelsets. Makes me laugh.

The sans helmet thing is even more funny.
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Old 06-12-05, 05:14 PM
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Originally Posted by operator
That's exactly what i'm saying. I laugh at all the euro-pro wannabe racers riding on the trail with their zipp 404 wheelsets. Makes me laugh.

The sans helmet thing is even more funny.
well I don't have a fancy bike or fancy stuff but I ride and rode all last week in the heat wave on road and trails to work I put in 25 miles a day so I think I am really riding and the bike messengers that ride street all day I think they ride too
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Old 06-13-05, 09:27 AM
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For training rides (whether or not you actually race), it would be irresponsible to ride on an MUT at 30+kph what with all the children/strollers about. But my wife is scares to death of riding on the streets (I've been hit by cars in T.O three times) and the MUT's are a godsend.

Here's an awesome North-of-the-city ride. Go up Warden to Old Homestead Rd, turn right and go to Pefferlaw and back. It's a 100+ km ride along good roads devoid of traffic and avoids all of the really leg-breaking hills in that area.
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Old 06-13-05, 09:30 AM
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Go up Warden to Old Homestead Rd, turn right and go to Pefferlaw and back.
How heavily is the traffic on Warden? And where do you start on this? (north of Eglington? north of Kingston Road?)
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Old 06-13-05, 11:40 AM
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Warden, north of Bloomington sideroad is the mecca of Toronto cycling. Lots of clubs/pros use it so it, so the local car drivers are very respectful of cyclists. On weekend mornings Warden does not have much traffic, most cars going North/South use either Hwy48 or Yonge St. Old Homestead see NO traffic.

If you Drive to Aurora car-pool lot at Aurora Side Road & Hwy404, and head over to Warden, then to Pefferlaw and back you will cover 120 km.

Edit: I live on the Danforth. Round trip from the Danforth would be 200km. Starting north of the city means you only have to ride on nice country roads.
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Old 06-13-05, 11:48 AM
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If you Drive to Aurora car-pool lot at Aurora Side Road & Hwy404, and head over to Warden, then to Pefferlaw and back you will cover 120 km.
Uh huh. I don't have a car or a driver's license. I tend to bike to my locations..

Wow. I just looked at my map book. I'd be looking at 50KM ride to just get to that point..
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Old 06-13-05, 11:49 AM
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If I can interject my totally unsolicited opinion, the south end of Warden Sux.

The only places along it's entire length that I find it useful for anything (riding, driving, or whatever) are between Eglinton and Ellesmere and from Highway Seven up to Sixteenth. (I rarely ride much north of there, but from what I remember it becomes a nondescript rural road north of Major Mack, so I supposed that section would be a decent road ride)

The worst sections are the 401 overpass and the stretch from Finch right up to 14th Avenue. Narrow, chewed-up and one red light after another. I usually take Midland or Birchmount in Scarborough (pretty questionable roads in their own right) and use Woodbine (of all streets) further up.

I guess that was uncalled for, but there it is.

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Old 06-13-05, 11:53 AM
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The worst sections are the 401 overpass and the stretch from Finch right up to 14th Avenue. Narrow, chewed-up and one red light after another. I usually take Midland or Birchmount in Scarborough (pretty questionable roads in their own right) and use Woodbine (of all streets) further up.

I guess that was uncalled for, but there it is.
No, not uncalled for. Good to know. As someone who lives downtown and bikes to where I can for riding, it's nice to know routes to get up to somewhere for decent riding. Looking at my map book, do you head west on Steeles to get Woodbine?
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Old 06-13-05, 12:07 PM
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I don't know if you can bring your bike on the TTC but lots of back road / farm fields starting at the zoo.
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Old 06-13-05, 12:09 PM
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I don't know if you can bring your bike on the TTC but lots of back road / farm fields starting at the zoo.
During certain times.. personally, I'd rather ride. Too hot to take the TTC.
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Old 06-13-05, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by MsMittens
Should I have stopped or not?
I don't see any reason that you should have stopped. You gave them a free tow with no obligation.
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