WOW!!! I just got back from Canada!!!

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by baj32161, Sep 13, 2005.

  1. baj32161

    baj32161 New Member

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    Hey gang....I just returned from a 5 day trip up to Canada to visit my girlfriend and I have notcied many diffrerences from cycling there than here in New Jersey. I was in the Burlington, ON area and made jaunts out to St Catharines, Niagara Falls, Oakville, Bronte, and Niagara-On-The-Lake. My God, what beautiful areas to be a cyclist. What I noticed were, as follows.

    1) There are LOTS of bike lanes or bike paths and people actually USE them...alot of people.

    2) Drivers actually give cyclists plenty of room when there is no bike lane or the lane is too unsafe (debris and such)

    3) There are all typss of riders there....folks just riding for fun, lots of commuters, and the racers/training riders....and they are all friendly and helpful.

    4) The Waterfront Trail kicks butt!!

    5) Families ride together...alot. I loved seeing that.

    6) Drivers actually stop and let pedestrians and cyclists pass through the intersection instead of honking and gesturing....that was very refreshing.

    7) Niagara-On-The-Lake is, perhaps the most beautiful town I have ever seen.

    8) Road cycling is bloody expensive up there!

    My girlfriend wants me to move up there with her and I am going to do it as soon as she is ready. I think I can even live with the winters if it means I get to ride my bike there for the rest of the year.

    Cheers,

    Brian
     
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  2. Insight Driver

    Insight Driver New Member

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    Dude,

    Everyplace is better than NJ! (former New Jersyite tranplanted to California).

    I have travelled on business in Ontario and British Columbia, both beautiful provinces. I know the differences in culture you are talking about. Good luck of you do move and keep in touch with us lower 48'rs, eh?
     
  3. Peka

    Peka New Member

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    Canadian winters are great for skiing :)
     
  4. baj32161

    baj32161 New Member

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    I could imagine that, but I am not a skier. I think I am going to need to purchase a nice trainer for those winters up there. I so wish I had brought my bike on this trip....I am going back in Oct or Nov for my vacation and won't be able to bring it on that trip either. Since we will be looking at real estate I don't think I will be able to find much time for riding:(
     
  5. Peka

    Peka New Member

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    Well, it could be a good opportunity to become one ;)
     
  6. Dr.Hairybiker

    Dr.Hairybiker New Member

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    Why is road cycling so expensive up there?
     
  7. velofan

    velofan New Member

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    Hey, glad you enjoyed your trip up to our fine country, come back anytime.

    I live just north of the area you visited so if you have any questions just let me know.

    We do have a reasonably good system of bike lanes and paths, and yes, they do get used, but we could still do better.

    I agree, our drivers are quite responsible towards cyclists, but don't kid yourself, there are a-holes everywhere and we certainly have our fair share.

    Niagara-on-the-lake is indeed a beautiful tourist town but it's not indicative of the area and it's a fairly spendy place to live.

    As far as winters go, I can't really see the Southern Ontario climate being any different from that of new Jersey. In fact St. Catharines and that area get mild winters compared to the rest of the country (Vancouver the exception of course)

    Skiing? There isn't a hill anywhere around here so i don't know if you'd bother taking up that sport.


    So, if you do decide to move up, all I ask is you leave your guns and your puritan ideals in the States.we don't need them up here. :D







     
  8. kaian

    kaian New Member

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    Velofan, you are hilarious! Many of us Americans don't want the guns and Puritan ideals down here either! ;)

    I live in Michigan, but have a special love for Canada. Most of my family is from Nova Scotia and I've heard great things about biking in all parts of the country.

    Even the small amount of riding I did in Windsor I found enjoyable. Drivers were very polite in general and I felt safe overall.

    Good luck if you do decide to move down there, Brian. Don't forget the rest of us battling it out on the bumpy, aggressive American roads. :p
     
  9. huhenio

    huhenio New Member

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    I was not a skier till the age of 30.

    Become one and enjoy the Quebec slopes.
     
  10. baj32161

    baj32161 New Member

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    LOL!! I am 44 and I don't plan on starting to ski now:D .
     
  11. baj32161

    baj32161 New Member

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    :D :D :D Hey Velofan...you won't have to worry about me bringing any guns or any Puritan attitudes up with me....those are some of the reasons I am leaving. I live in Trenton NJ., the capital of NJ and a city of about 80,000 people. We have just had our 20th and 21st gun homicides for the year and I am getting tired of it (do you have that many in all of Canada?)....we have gang violence (Bloods & Crips), 9 yr olds firebombing homes and killing other children, among other antisocial behaviour. I have to ride through some not too good areas on my way to work and everyday I count my blessings to make it safely.

    The civility of Canada (at least where I was) astounded me...what with people saying hello to each other as they pass each other....walking or cycling. People holding doors for each other, in fact I was at the bank to get my currency exchanged and I was holding a door for a woman, she was holding a door for my girlfriend and noone was going anywhere.....I HAD to laugh at that. I am a very friendly guy and these things were quite refreshing to me. I grew up in a small town in Westchester Co., NY (Mamaroneck) and those are the kinds of things I am used to. Sad to say, but we could learn alot from you folks up north.

    I am quite anxious to make my move.

    Brian

    BTW..if you were American you would have said "Come back anytime, as long as you don't stay.":D :D
     
  12. yeroc602

    yeroc602 New Member

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    Did you happen to see Pearl Jam while you were up there??
     
  13. rolfdevinci

    rolfdevinci New Member

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    Hiya K;

    Funny enough I think I`m the only Nova Scotian on the forums. Where`s your family from? I`m here in Halifax but am originally from Bridgewater down on the South Shore. My wife`s a Caper from across the causeway.

    "Road cycling is expensive..."

    Well...no worse than any other sport where you have to fork out for gear. Once you get your bike and do the required upgrades you are golden...lol. :D

    "Friendly..."

    We do have our "fringe elements" but as a whole most motorists(in my part of Canuckistan) are patient and considerate of cyclists. That said the signs say "share the roads" so us cyclists have responsibility to behave as well.

    In terms of other cyclists most always wave, nod or say hello in passing. In fact I noticed that runners are quick to say "hi" as do many motorcyclists.

    " Guns..."

    Yup....hand guns and assault rifles are verboten so no worries about that....tho unfortunately the smuggling of hand guns across the border by the criminal element is becoming a problem in some of the big cities. In most cases if you do run into a moron motorist and you flip the bird you won`t have to worry about him pulling a Glock out on ya......lol. ;)

    "Roads..." - Gotta say the change in seasons can reap havoc on the pavement. We don`t complain about the gas taxes as much if the DOT paves the best cycling routes. Peggy`s Cove might be a tourist magnet but the 100K loop is wicked to cycle upon....as smooth as a baby`s bum. Some of the secondary roads can get choppy but it`s a great way to pretend you are training for the Spring Classics..... :D

    So.....if you do relocate here in the Great White North just remember these things....

    Tim Hortons coffee is a national addiction

    Beer IS a recovery drink

    Studded bike tires on a winter beater bike gives you serious hardcore points.

    LOL.

    :D
     
  14. remdog

    remdog New Member

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    Dude,

    Hope to see you out and about on the roads up here sometime. Fall riding is still great up here. You'll have to bundle up a bit but you can still get some great quality riding. Growing up in Niagara Falls I've pretty much ridden all you can around here.

    Mountain biking's not bad either.

    Don't forget the beers.:D
     
  15. Alpha

    Alpha New Member

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    Not a skier? You can learn!

    There are some great beginner ski hills within an hour drive of Burlington.

    I live an hour west of Burlington but I have ridden the St. Catherines, Niagara area. It is a great place to ride. Next time you ride in that particular area, stop at one of the wineries for a quick nip!
     
  16. baj32161

    baj32161 New Member

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    LOL!! sorry but I have no interest in learning to ski:cool:
     
  17. Yojimbo_

    Yojimbo_ Well-Known Member

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    Being a Canadian, and being familiar with all of those locations mentioned, I must say I do get a nice feeling when someone from another land likes where I live.

    Good on ya.

    By the way, you'll need to insert the occasional "eh" in your sentences if you want to sound like a real Canadian. Example, "Let's go to the store, eh?", "It's cold, eh?". It's a way of turning a statement into a question I think.
     
  18. baj32161

    baj32161 New Member

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    LMAO!!!!! I am working on the "eh?" thing...afterall I do plan on moving there to be with my girlfriend. I am already getting used to using "our" (colour, favour) instead of or. I just plain fell in love with the place and the people. The civility of the folks in that area just astounded me. I am a very friendly guy and found the openness of the people quite rtefreshing.
     
  19. kaian

    kaian New Member

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    Hi! My mom and her family are from Cape Breton. I have yet to travel there, but I'm hoping to in the next few years. I hear it's beautiful! I'd like to see Halifax, too.
     
  20. Alpha

    Alpha New Member

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    It's refreshing to hear an American who appreciates the politeness and respect shown by the average person and what it does for your spirit and well being.
    There is a thread in which the question "Do you carry a gun while cycling?" is asked. Some of the arguments in the thread are that choosing to carry a gun is freedom.
    True freedom is going for a ride without thinking you may need a gun.

    I hope every ride you have is as enjoyable as your first
     
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