Last weekend, I finished the Ride to Conquer Cancer for the third time, and all of that bike-riding got me thinking about just how much Toronto cycling has grown in this city over the past few years.
Riding a bike no longer carries the stigma of just not having access to a car. People in this city ride bikes for all sorts of reasons: from as a source of fitness and fun, to commuting and riding a bike as a primary source of transportation; Toronto cycling has grown so much.
For those that don’t know, I’m really into cycling. I’ve entered countless of organized cycling events, like the Ride to Conquer Cancer, and with some like-minded people, I’m even part of a Toronto cycling club called the Morning Glory Cycling Club.
If you’re into riding a bike too, then you already know that Toronto cycling has so much to offer cyclists. If not, and you’re thinking about getting started in cycling, here’s some rides I really enjoy:
As far as trails go, the Bedford Park and Lawrence Park neighbourhoods mark the starting point of my favorite trail system in the city. It runs from Flower Park on Yonge Street, South of Lawrence Avenue, all the way down through Moore Park and Rosedale, all along the Don River down, and ends down at the waterfront. It’s really an incredible pathway and just a fantastic ride.
If you’re more into the city streets, you’ve got to check out Harbord Street which cuts through the Annex. Over the last few years, Harbord Street has developed into a major bike throughway heading down to U of T; but it isn’t just U of T students biking along this route. You can find everyone from business people to University grads using it as their primary commute route each day, and I personally wouldn’t be surprised if bikes outnumber cars there these days. Due to demand, the city has even gone so far as to mark the road off and give bikers their own quasi-bikelanes, which is a really welcomed sight.
And if distance is more your thing, you can pretty much go through the whole city, and beyond, via the very-well-maintained bike path on the Lakeshore. This incredible trail runs all the way from The Beaches down to Port Credit in Mississauga with virtually no stopping at all. It’s fantastic, and if you head down there early enough, you have the added bonus of seeing some of Toronto’s many rowing clubs on the water at first morning light; a beautiful and serene sight to take in.
So, if you’re one of those countless people in the countless cars lining King and Queen street every morning trying to get to the office, give riding a bike some thought. It’s cheaper, it’s fun, and it’s a great way to stay fit in the city.