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Ride from Prince George to Vancouver, BC - need some feedback

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Ride from Prince George to Vancouver, BC - need some feedback

Old 12-04-09, 02:53 PM
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Ride from Prince George to Vancouver, BC - need some feedback

Thinking of doing this ride - what are the riding conditions like? when is the best time of year - i like optimal weather? are there towns spaced 80 - 110km apart?

Thanks!
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Old 12-04-09, 10:43 PM
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I've never ridden on that stretch of road but I've driven it a ton of times and I've never seen a cyclist on it (for good reason!) There are plenty of steep hills, blind corners, sections with little or no shoulder all over the place (usually at the top of a steep hill and around a blind corner) oh and then there are all the heavy trucks driving by all the time. Most of the guys on that road are crappy drivers too. Truckers are tired and pissed off at RV drivers and car drivers, well, they are car drivers dangerous no matter where you go. There are some really scenic areas of the road if you take highway #1 from Hope but then you have several Tunnels with no shoulder to contend with and, believe me, the truckers will begrudgingly avoid hitting you but they are usually major dicks about it (I used to be a trucker so I know this well). Highway 5 into Kamloops and then to Cache Creek is a safer bet though arguably less scenic and more hilly. I'm pretty sure there are towns every 100 kms or so but I could be wrong (check Google maps).

What I do recommend is highway 99 from Cache Creek to Vancouver It's as dangerous but WAY more scenic. It's utterly breathtaking most of the way. you go through canyons, up and down mountains, loads of hairpins oceanside riding and you can check out Squamish and Whistler on the way. Oh and there's lots of camping but I think one or more stretched of road are about 100+ km between towns. I have ridden that road though and it was GREAT!
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Old 12-05-09, 09:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Eternal_Tourist
I've never ridden on that stretch of road but I've driven it a ton of times and I've never seen a cyclist on it (for good reason!) There are plenty of steep hills, blind corners, sections with little or no shoulder all over the place (usually at the top of a steep hill and around a blind corner) oh and then there are all the heavy trucks driving by all the time. Most of the guys on that road are crappy drivers too. Truckers are tired and pissed off at RV drivers and car drivers, well, they are car drivers dangerous no matter where you go. There are some really scenic areas of the road if you take highway #1 from Hope but then you have several Tunnels with no shoulder to contend with and, believe me, the truckers will begrudgingly avoid hitting you but they are usually major dicks about it (I used to be a trucker so I know this well). Highway 5 into Kamloops and then to Cache Creek is a safer bet though arguably less scenic and more hilly. I'm pretty sure there are towns every 100 kms or so but I could be wrong (check Google maps).

What I do recommend is highway 99 from Cache Creek to Vancouver It's as dangerous but WAY more scenic. It's utterly breathtaking most of the way. you go through canyons, up and down mountains, loads of hairpins oceanside riding and you can check out Squamish and Whistler on the way. Oh and there's lots of camping but I think one or more stretched of road are about 100+ km between towns. I have ridden that road though and it was GREAT!
I also don't know much about that stretch of Hwy 97 having only driven it once (PG - Quesnel - Williams Lake - 100 Mile House - Cache Creek are indeed around 100-120km apart), but I'll second that cycling the Sea to Sky to Cache Creek is great, especially the portion north of Whistler which has less traffic. As a bonus, going south there's a bit less climbing (I think) than the other way - only big climb I can think of is out of Lillooet.
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Old 12-06-09, 02:55 AM
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I wouldn't use the words "less climb" and this stretch of highway in the same sentence at the best of times. The road from Cache Creek to Pemberton is 100's of km's, isolated and remote double, sometimes single lane highway, with little or no shoulder. There is one mountain climb before the Mt Currie Inidan Reserve that even gets snow in August.

I've driven this highway extensively and it gives me enough concern even when I'm in a brand new, fully equipped 4X4 on dry pavement, in daylight. On a bicycle? Not for the timid, thats for sure. Only with a support vehicle, anything else is nuts in my opinion. Oh, and watch the bears too!!!! LOL

Also, and if your support vehicle keeps me limited to 10km per hour in the middle of nowhere, you might get a taste of my push bar. Just saying, expect to get the f*** out of the few peoples way you encounter on that highway, it is a different world.

I agree with eternal_tourist; never, ever seen a cyclist on that route.

Last edited by Chilled; 12-06-09 at 03:03 AM.
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Old 12-06-09, 01:36 PM
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I'd have to disagree, Chilled, having done the Vancouver - Cache Creek stretch a few months ago as my first solo trip, with plans to continue north that changed. I felt there was a decent shoulder most of the way (I don't think I ever had to block traffic), and I didn't come across any impatient drivers - one actually stopped and offered me a ride up the big hill to Cayoosh Pass (out of Mt Currie). Though not as much as parts of northern BC, it's nothing like the lower mainland so self-sufficiency is quite important, but there is enough traffic that if something goes totally wrong you can flag someone down without too much trouble. I met a few cool people on the way, too! Of course this kind of trip is one on which you want to carry a tent and not just a credit card, in case you don't manage to make it to your goal that day, but if this is something you want to do and feel is compatible your abilities and experience, go for it! FWIW, I went in early June and it was way too warm for any snow - it was during a bit of a hot spell though.
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