Gravel lovers take note…

Georgian Trail, just outside of Meaford.

Temperatures dropped this weekend, meaning one thing…the second part of fall has finally arrived.  Time to ditch the arms and legs and pull out the full thermo tights and jackets.  Despite the heavy north west winds that haunt us here during the autumn months, this weekend was perfect if you were looking to see some fall colours.  

Side Road 5, near Banks.

This is the best time of year for gravel rides.  Collingwood has kilometres of gravel, everything from goat path climbs to smooth rail trails.  If the winds are strong, ride from Collingwood to Meaford along the sheltered Georgian trail.  A great carefree ride that takes you on an “out and back” route through Thornbury to Meaford and back.  Stop for a coffee and some goodies (or lunch) at the halfway point, McGuintys Cafe in Meaford.  The Georgian trail is great for highbred bikes, but completely rideable on a carbon road bike, as long as you don’t mind the stone dust.  Most of us spend hours riding this trail in the bad weather on cyclocross bikes.

I spent Sunday venturing around the gravel backroads up on the escarpment, taking in all the colours the fall has to offer.  If your looking for a great gravel ride (on a cyclocross bike or mtb), head west out of town, climb 12th Sideroad, and spend a few hours riding the concession back roads, great anytime of year if you’re looking for a challenge.  As November approaches, get out on those nice days….there isn’t too many left before the snow starts to fly.