2010 - Around Lake Ontario - Cycling around a Great Lake

Preface Around Lake Ontario

07/12/2010 13:00:00 by Administrator

The Summer of 2010 finds us cycling around Lake Ontario. We will be starting in Watertown, New York, and touring clockwise around this Great Lake. We will be following the Adventure Cycling's "Northern Tier" route, which includes traveling on the Erie Canal (SeeMore can't get enough of the Erie Canal!). After entering Canada, we will be following the Waterfront trail.

So apply your suntan lotion, put on your sunglasses, bring your swim suits...and follow SeeMore on another adventure!

Around Lake Ontario - Day 1

07/13/2010 13:00:00 by Administrator

Watertown, NY
Pulaski, NY
34 miles

We left the Subaru off at Discount Auto Glass in Watertown NY and headed south on NY bicycle route 11 (also NY rte 11). The Subaru needs a new front window, and the friendly people at Discount are allowing us to leave the car with them while we take our tour around Lake Ontario.

We planned a short day today, getting the first day touring legs back in shape. Route 11 is basically flat, with a nice shoulder (until the last 5 miles into Pulaski)...vehicle traffic was minor. Just a pleasant ride with overcast skies and temperatures in the mid 80s. Tomorrow, the forecast calls for rain.

By staying on route 11, the Rear Admiral had no map to read, and we pedaled our way until lunch at a little dinner, located in the back of a small grocery store in Sandy Creek

We are living large at a Super 8 motel, there is a new grocery store next door, so it looks like we will be searching the isles for supper.

Around Lake Ontario - Day 2

07/14/2010 13:00:00 by Administrator

Pulaski, NY
Weedsport, NY
58 miles

A beautiful day of countryside touring through large and small farms. Skies were a bit overcast, but the temperatures stayed in the low 80s.

We planned to use Adventure Cycling's Northern Tier map, but the lure of riding more of the Erie canal trail sent us in a zigzag south west direction. We rode through the towns of Mexico, Palermo, Penneville, Phoenix, and Baldwinsville on quiet county roads. We stopped in a sub shop for lunched in Baldwinsville. During lunch we remembered the diner and places we stopped at in Baldwinsville the last couple of times on tour in New York.

After lunch we headed south on route 31 (NY bicycle rte 5) until Jordan, where we picked up the Erie Canal Trail.

We are living large at the Best Western motel in Weedsport and have already enjoyed playing in the pool and walking the town. Weedsport was named after a family named Weeds.....and all this time I thought it was named after a port on the Erie canal that was known to have lots of lilly pads!.

Around Lake Ontario - Day 3

07/15/2010 13:00:00 by Administrator

Weedsport, NY
Rochester, NY
64 miles

A beautiful day ..... 50 percent of gently rolling countryside touring through farmland, with the other half on the Erie Canal . Temperatures stayed in the low 90s, with puffy clouds.

We had breakfast at the Best Western motel, which tied us over until Newport. We met up with the Pedaling Pastors from Canton Ohio. 22 Methodist pastors are cycling, supported by two sag wagons, from Ohio to Jordan NY, and back. They are spending the night in churches along the route. We played leap frog with them all day, and really enjoyed their company. The only side note is that they really don't know what town they stayed in , what town they started in, or what town they will be finishing up in for the night. We asked these questions to different pastors, at different times of the day...and got many different answers. Now that's what I call touring. The Rear Admiral and I loose the day of the week, and the correct date when we are on tour....but we always know where we been, and where we are going.

Tonight we are at Dustin and Lauren's townhouse in Rochester. So we are in very good hands.

Around Lake Ontario - Day 4

07/16/2010 13:00:00 by Administrator

Rochester, NY
Lockport, NY
66 miles

Two brief downpours (I did get wet! Mary stayed dry), and the rest of the day in the high 80's, sunny with a headwind. Just another beautiful day on the Erie Canal.

From Fairport NY (on yesterday's travels) until Greece NY, the canal trail is paved and SeeMore just hummed along. The only caution you need to take is staying on the Canal trail when it intersects with the Genesee trail....that and a few road crossings (but not many!). We said it before, but it needs repeating, Rochester NY has quite a gem in their trail system.

The also have two more gems, Dustin and Lauren....thank you so much for letting us crash at your townhouse!!!!.

Today was basically a one gear day, with no cars. The headwinds and the trail surface made a low MPH day...but that's the way the Erie Canal trail should be travelled! I knew I was going to stretch the Rear Admirals strength, but she gave full power, right to the end! Today we past through the canal towns of Spencerport, Brockport, Holley, and had lunch at Albion. The down town area of Albion seems a little in the depressed arena....but someone would make a lot of money by putting up a convenience store/ deli next to the trail (in one of the many empty storefronts). After lunch, we continued through Medina, Middleport, and Gasport. We stopped at Gasport for a soda break.... and again....someone would make a lot of money by putting up a convenience store / deli here cause they could really use one!.....

We are living large at the Holiday Inn, downtown Lockport. We only have one small little concern.....we lost the bicycle map with directions for the way across the Rainbow Bridge...into Canada! We did cycle back for a couple of miles...but . . . Oh well, SeeMore will have to be our guide.

Around Lake Ontario - Day 5

07/17/2010 13:00:00 by Administrator

Lockport, NY
St Catharines, ON
45 miles

We started out with breakfast at Lil Robins...a small diner in the heart of Lockport....delicious!!!!! The owners were very interested in SeeMore and his travels (and so were most of the customers!). After we were completely full, we headed west through Lockport until we found Upper Mountain road. Not sure why they call it Upper Mountain...if was basically flat for 20 miles....but we think it goes along a ridge. There is one word for today's weather....Headwinds.

Getting across the Lewiston ridge was a bit of a challenge, but only because we were sheepish to go up on to the "highway". Once there, we stayed in the "commercial" truck lane, until we saw the customs booths...and the booth farthest to the right. The Canadian customs gentleman was an avid bicycle-tourist. Needless to say, 18 minutes later...we were still talking about touring (to the chagrin of the other cars in the line).

Then there was the Niagara River Recreation Trail. A paved trail that runs 35 miles north-south from Niagara-on-the-lake, down to Fort Erie. WOW! Mansions and the Niagara River on one side, fruit farms and wineries on the other. And well used by the Canadian people. We just had a blast, SeeMore barely reached 8 MPH as he tried to take it all in.

At Fort George, we joined the Waterfront Trail which a combination of trail, bikeway, and road sharing. We will be on the Waterfront Trail until we exit from Canadian.

We are living large at the Comfort Inn, downtown St Catharines... about 3 miles south of the Waterfront trail. The skies were looking very black and scary, so we headed for shelter.

Around Lake Ontario - Day 6

07/18/2010 13:00:00 by Administrator

St Catharines, ON
Bronte, ON
49 miles

Happy Birthday Dustin! Hope your 25th birthday day was as fantastic as ours.

We were off to a great start from the Comfort Suites hotel after the complementary cereal and juice and many apologies from the desk clerk for all of the ruckus last night. I (Mary) assured him that a few partying lacross players were nothing in comparison to some of the nightly distractions we've faced on the road, not to worry. Apparently our room was right in the hub of several of the "partying rooms" at the hotel last night. Based on the broken windows and liquor bottles strewn across the parking lot, it must have been quite the party. I guess there is one lacross team that was going straight home this morning.

As for us we just hit the road with full bellies and sunny skies above. Cycling once again along the lake shore through farm land, fruit trees, georgeous homes and more wineries. Our lake shore views ran out around 10 am where we had to detour to the south service road, we were just settling in to the new route when I looked up to my left at a passing car into the window and face of Lauren. Holy &*%!, and what the heck are Lauren and Dustin doing riding right along side of us. We had tried to talk the kids out of trecking all of the way up here, but we're so glad they didn't listen to us. After a bit of checking the area out we discovered that the restaurant at the Best Western was having a brunch. The restaurant was right on the water overlooking a marina. We took our time enjoying the company and the views. The dessert buffet was yummy and even had a chocolate fountain ( a first try for us).

Our route connected with the Hamilton Beach Recreational Trail for the better part of the afternoon, We were amazed by the size of this trail. It runs the entire coastline through Hamilton City. The trail is the width of a city street, which we soon discovered was necessary due to the traffic on the path. Hamilton is a huge city and its entire population was visiting the park this Sunday. It is great to see so many people out enjoying the park.

We are living large at the Holiday Inn, downtown Bronte... about 2 miles west of the Waterfront trail. Dustin and Lauren have just left to return home. Again, what a great suprise...like putting whip creme and a cherry on top of a fresh bowl of ice cream.