It can take me more than hour to get out of my city’s sprawl. I know that many Toronto riders head north for more enjoyable roads. But, less than two hours east, there’s a gold mine of great riding around Peterborough, Ont., especially gravel roads.
This past spring, my colleague Joel and I had a “tough” assignment: load up a Saris SuperClamp EX 2-Bike rack to test it out, and then test our legs on some routes around Peterborough that we’d never ridden before. Our guides were Kieran Andrews and Kim Deleenheer of Wild Rock Outfitters, Jeff Wills, who’s behind Reggie cycling clothing, and Steve Marett, who brings Silca products to Canada. They would take us along a few nuggets of gravel road, which we documented in the video above.
We rolled out of Wild Rock to the Harold Town Conservation Area. The gravel started past Harold Town on Sweeney Line. We stayed on unpaved surfaces that included Douro Seventh Line, Bradfield Road and Douro Eighth Line. There was a nice paved section along the Otonabee River, and then back to the bumpy stuff on 9 Line, which got us to Old Norwood Road and back to Harold Town. It totalled about 30-km.
In the video, you’ll see a car or two, which is all we really saw out on the roads. It was idyllic, really—the crunch of the gravel under the tires and the good chats we had riding two by two as we passed farms and forests.
After the ride, we headed back to Peterborough. Joel and I had to rest because the next day, we’d meet up with the crew for a longer 105-km gravel bonanza. Kieran had some adventurous sections in mind. I’ll tell you all about that big day out soon. But for now, check out the video, and start planning your adventure in Peterborough.