Ontario By Bike Ride – August 2019

OntarioByBikeRides 2017

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This ride is now over
A detailed itinerary for this ride is available below for download.
Enjoy great trail riding with a self-guided ride experience.
This route and ride itinerary was compiled for the August 2019 Ontario By Ride, a small group tour
and has been made available to share with individuals and groups that may be interested in the same ride.

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1000 Islands St. Lawrence River Ride

Total Distance: 158km

The Ride: Cycle one of the most spectacular routes in Ontario discovering the 1000 Islands and St Lawrence River on a three day, long weekend tour. Starting from Gananoque and ending in Cornwall, following the Waterfront Trail east, this ride is on a mix of trails and roads. Plan to slow down the pace to take in the scenery and make the most of waterfront rest stops and villages. Enjoy a night in Brockville before pedalling on to Morrisburg for the second night, and the last day of riding taking in an array of natural and heritage attractions in what was once called Upper Canada. This small group tour includes hotel accommodations, some meals, support van and as this ride follows a linear route, return transportation for you and your bike. We make it easy – Just bring your bike and ride.

Experience Level and Ride Guide: Moderate. Riders on this ride need to have some experience riding on roads with vehicle traffic as the route is approximately half on roads and half on trails or park roads. The route does follow a signed bike route, the Waterfront Trail, but not all segments have bike lanes or paved shoulders to ride in. Some of the road route is on very quiet country roads, other segments are busier. Off-road trails do incorporate some segments of unpaved surfaces, which are hard packed so easy to ride. The majority of ride is on paved surfaces, and combined with limited elevation changes, the flat terrain makes this ride suitable for hybrid bikes, mountain bikes and road bikes. Enjoy a group ride option or ride at your own pace using detailed maps and information provided.

View Route: Ride With GPS  

OBBR Aug Photo Strip 1

Day 1:
Ganonoque to Brockville – 55km

A short ride out of Gananoque will connect riders to the 37km off-road and paved 1000 Island Parkway Recreational Bike Path. Pedaling into the heart of the 1000 Islands, this first day features a stunning, world-class cycling experience on the trail running adjacent to the glistening waters of the St. Lawrence River. Slow down for panoramic lookouts and island views, beach picnic areas and a visit to the riverside village of Rockport. The final 10km brings cyclists off the paved path and on to Old Hwy 2 into Brockville and end of the ride day. Choose to cool down with a post-ride dip in the river at St. Lawrence Park, just west of downtown Brockville or head into town, finding a patio to enjoy the evening in the bicycle friendly downtown area. Visit the newly opened historic railway tunnelAquatarium and shops in town before catching up with other riders at an evening group get-together. Overnight at trailside Super 8 in Brockville.
Consider overnight accommodation options in Gananoque for the night before rides starts. View list of certified bicycle friendly options HERE.

Day 2:
Brockville to Morrisburg – 55km

Set out from accommodations conveniently located alongside the Waterfront Trail, following this signed route east out of town. Riding on paved roadway, with many kilometres of paved shoulders, the route on day 2 is through quiet rural countryside, with pretty pastoral farmlands alongside the St. Lawrence River. Stop in small towns, slow down for historical plaques and local museums, as this area is rich in heritage. After a picnic lunch enroute, pedal onwards to Morrisburg and accommodations for the night at bicycle friendly McIntosh Country Inn, just east of town. For the speedier riders arriving early, consider catching the only show of the day, a 2pm matinee at the Upper Canada Playhouse. Enjoy the evening, dinning at hotel or in town.  

Day 3:
Morrisburg to Cornwall – 48km

With so much to see and do on that last day, consider an early start to explore more. At Crysler Farm Battlefield Park, learn more about this site and its significance in the War of 1812. Nearby stop in at Upper Canada Village to see a picture perfect 19th century village. Follow the unpaved easy to ride trail eastward into the quiets of the Upper Canada Migratory Bird Sanctuary, stopping at the interpretative centre. Continuing east, a highlight of the weekend is the Long Sault Parkway, a park road that joins 11 picturesque islands afloat in the St. Lawrence. Make a last stop in the fascinating Lost Villages Museum, to learn more the flood area, before rolling into Cornwall following trails alongside hydro canals. Stow your bike on the truck and load onto the bus for a return ride back to Gananoque and end of the weekend.


Alan Medcalf 2014 Rockport Cornwall path lo res Long Sault Parkway pic

Additional Visitor Information:

Use below to find out more about ride areas and plan an extra day or two to see more.

Getting To/From Start:
This is not a looped itinerary and it is suggested to always organize and/or confirm reservation and timing of transportation services prior to departure to ensure availability of services. Gananoque is located in south eastern Ontario. Factor in the following approximate drive times to get to the start: Toronto 3 hours; Ottawa 1.5 hours; Montreal 2.5 hours. Call local taxi companies to arrange pick up time, location and passenger numbers:

  • Veteran’s Blue Line – (613) 932-7311 – Mini-van’s available, approximate cost 1-way to Gananoque $249 incl. tax/2019 quote
  • Choice Taxi – (613)938-8899 – Mini-van’s available, approximate cost 1-way to Gananoque $263 incl. tax/2019 quote

VIA Rail:

  • Bike transportation on trains is currently unavailable. Expected to resume in 2025. Check: www.viarail.ca, 1 888 VIA-RAIL or 1-(888) 842-7245

For larger groups, chartering a bus for bike and rider transportation is an option:

  • Howard Bus Service, www.howardtravel.ca, (613) 342-4791

1000 Islands Trail

Photo Credits: Alan Medcalf, St. Lawrence Parks Commission

Also See Ontario By Bike Itineraries for more inspiring rides

OBB Ride Itineraries