From farms to conservation land, wineries to waterfronts, Ontario is a fantastic destination for bike tourism. Whether you are taking weekend trips from Toronto, or spending the whole summer touring the lakes, you’ll experience a huge variety of riding. Single track, double track, converted rail trails, gravel roads, multi-use paths and bike shoulders, there is a great variety in every itinerary.
Going by electric bicycle is a great way to see even more of Canada’s second largest province. Just ask any Pedego owner if they ride more since buying an ebike! And, if you need more than 10 rides this summer, grab Ontario By Bikes’s 2019 riding guide. If you need an electric bike, visit Pedego Kawartha Lakes or Pedego Prince Edward County: rent for a one-off adventure, or buy one forever.
WALTER BEAN TRAIL, WATERLOO
This 35km return trip starts at Schneider Park and runs along the old Grand Trunk Railway Line to Cambridge. Enjoy river views, historic mills and one of Ontario’s prettiest downtowns filled with lovely stone architecture.
STURGEON LAKE, KAWARTHA LAKES
Make Kawartha Lakes your destination for some spectacular lakeside riding, following County Road 24 out of Bobcaygeon along Sturgeon Lake. There are a selection of secondary roads intersecting the Trent Severn Waterway and lock stations. Pedego Kawartha Lakes rents bikes for this route (and the next one)
KEN REID CONSERVATION AREA, LINDSAY
A great ride for novice and intermediate riders is in the Ken Reid Conservation Area a 5km ride north of Lindsay along the Victoria Rail Trail. The 10km trail network is relatively flat with many rest areas and water features on the southern arm of Sturgeon Lake. Even better, the whisper quiet motor on a Pedego won’t interrupt the birding. Visit Pedego Lindsay for maps and bikes.
COUNTY ROADS 18 and 16, MORRISBURG
For riding on paved shoulders, the County Roads 18 and 16 provide a 40km lollipop route including the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail. The flat agricultural lands spanning the horizon call to mind The Netherlands, as does the joy of cycling on the road instead of driving a car.
PRESCOTT RUSSELL RECREATIONAL TRAIL, ST EUGENE
The 72km Prescott Russell Recreational Trail stretches from St-Eugène in the east to the village of Hammond in the west. For those looking for a recreational overnight trip, ride from Vankleek Hill to Plantagenet along the trail. Overnight in Plantagenet before pedalling the paved shoulders north and east along the Ottawa River back to Vankleek Hill for a 76km loop.
MILLENNIUM TRAIL, PRINCE EDWARD COUNTY
Acquired by The County from the Canadian National Railway in 1997, the Millennium Trail is a re-purposed abandoned rail line that was converted into a multi-use recreational feature for the enjoyment of County residents and visitors. The 46-kilometre multi-use trail stretches from Carrying Place at County Road 64 to Picton at County Road 49, passing near Consecon, Wellington, and Bloomfield. You’ll find Pedego Prince Edward County smack bang in the middle of it, with a large rental fleet including an electric tandem bicycle.
TURKEY POINT, PORT RYERSE
Turkey Point has approximately 65 km of well-maintained and signed singletrack trails both within and adjacent to Turkey Point Provincial Park and St. Williams Conservation Reserve. Beginners have plenty of terrain to explore; and it is possible to rent electric bikes from Ontario’s South Coast Bicycles nearby Port Ryerse.
WILDWOOD CONSERVATION AREA, ST MARYS
If you’re really into natural surfaces, in Pedego-speak that means an Elevate, Trail Tracker or Ridge Rider, the Wildwood Conservation Area has approximately 30 km of trails, including a 24km loop Lake Trail of mostly single track. It is directional meaning that on even-days it rides clockwise and on odd-days, counter-clockwise.
VICTORIA RAIL TRAIL, FENELON FALLS
The trail takes you from Lindsay north for 22 kilometres along Sturgeon Lake to Fenelon Falls. During the summer months the bridge crossing this waterway is swung open to allow boater traffic through. Rent a bike from Pedego Lindsay and ride north to the falls and back.
GREAT WATERFRONT TRAIL
The first nine aren’t enough? Tackle the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail—3,000 km of breathtaking waterfront on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, running from Sault Ste. Marie to Sudbury!
Electric bikes are a lot of fun to ride in the winter, as we’ve already said in our previous article, “How to Prepare Your Electric Bike for Winter Riding.” But, as that story mentioned, there are key things you can do to get ready for the season, including switching out your tires to studded tires, rust proofing certain areas of your bike and getting warm clothes, winter boots and a waterproof, breathable jacket. But what should you do to maintain your electric bike throughout the winter?
Store Your Electric Bike Properly
If you choose to store your bike between November and March, rather that ride it, there are things you should do to maintain your electric bike. For example, if you’re storing it, make sure to keep it in a dry location that’s not too hot or too cold. If you have to leave it in an unheated shed over the winter, for example, remove the battery and store it inside the house. Also, don’t charge your battery if it’s very cold (below freezing) as that does harm to the cells. Instead, wait for it to be at room temperature before charging. And, as mentioned in our “How To Take Care of Your Lithium Battery” blog, make sure your battery is partially charged when storing, preferably between 40% and 80%, and check its charge occasionally.
Wipe Down Your Electric Bike After Every Ride
If you are riding your electric bike in the winter time, try to avoid doing so when it’s very slushy outside as the watery, salty snow can get embedded in your gears and seep into hard-to-reach areas. That said, wiping down your electric bike after every ride will help a lot. We recommend you follow the instructions we laid out in our “How to Clean Your Electric Bike” article. But we also know it can be hard to rinse a bike in the wintertime so instead wipe it down with an old cloth after every ride. This may seem like a lot but it’s important that salty water from the roads not be allowed to dry on your bike. Fenders do an excellent job of keeping water from getting into the frame but they don’t protect your rims, spokes, chainrings and chain. So give those a quick wipe to dry them before storing for the night.
Clean Your Chain Regularly
It’s not enough to wipe down your chain regularly – it’s important to clean it and use a bike chain-specific lubricant regularly. If the chain has a lot of dirt or grime build-up, use a chain solvent such as Simple Green or warm water and any degreasing dish soap, and an old toothbrush to scrub away the grim. It doesn’t take very long but it will save you money to have a professional unclog all the gunk in your chain later. Then use a bike chain lubricant on it liberally to ward off rust.
One of the most popular online magazines in the United States just wrote a feature about electric bikes and the author touched on something we all need to consider: electric bikes replace car journeys. Called “The Electric Glide — E-bikes are destined for something bigger than replacing regular bicycles” the article appears in February 12 issue of Slate and describes Henry Grabar’s experience riding an electric bike around Los Angeles.
Although infamous for its traffic-clogged freeways, L.A. is an excellent city to bike around the writer says because between the clogged arteries are “mile after square mile of low-density, low-stress residential bliss.” It was a warm and sunny day when he first got on the electric bike and his description of riding with the motor is typical of most people who try ebikes for the first time. “Reader, I flew, past even the MAMILs (middle-aged men in Lycra) out for their weekend rides. Their glares glanced off my back; other riders seemed perplexed at my speed. I get it. Watching someone ride one of these things is a little like seeing a cat leap 10 feet — it defies what your eyes have gotten used to believing is possible.”
“I thought of my e-bike more like a car than a bicycle. And maybe that is the way to think of them: not as high-class bicycles for riders who want to sweat less, but as low-cost, low-maintenance vehicles.”
The writer took two long rides throughout the city over the course of the week and came to realize that riding an electric bike, “feels as if you have superhuman strength, and that’s how people look at you, too (with a mixture of envy and anxiety.”
He then goes on to make the most important point of the article and one that we should all be thinking because electric bikes aren’t about replacing traditional bicycle journeys. Many hardcore bikers have the inaccurate notion that riders of electric bicycles are cheating because the motor is assisting in their pedalling. But what would they say if we told them that the other option was driving a car? Because that’s the case for many of us: we could burn fossil fuels driving to work or to the store or we could have fun riding an electric bike instead.
In the article, Grabar writes, “I thought of my e-bike more like a car than a bicycle. And maybe that is the way to think of them: not as high-class bicycles for riders who want to sweat less, but as low-cost, low-maintenance vehicles for people who drive three miles to work alone. Think of an e-bike as a replacement for a car, not a manually powered bike, and suddenly it seems cheap. It seems easy. It seems green. Parking is a piece of cake. And unlike a car, it never gets stuck in traffic.”
To read the article in its entirety, log on to the story on Slate‘s website.