Monday, July 25, 2011

Grand Valley to Horse Creek Loop

So the other day, we (neighbours, that is) decided to go out for a bike ride. Road ride. Yeah, and since we live on one of the most fantastic bike loops in the area, we decided to pedal out the Horse Creek – Grand Valley loop. GPS data can be found here.

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We did the loop clockwise, starting on the highway from our neighbourhood going a few km’s west (into a strong headwind) to Grand Valley road and taking that north. The hills are called the Wildcat Hills.

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Once we turned north, the winds weren’t so bad and the hills provided some protection. And there were some nice views along the way.

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J and his fancy road bike. I have a single speed commuter and had to pedal like mad to keep up. Perhaps that is some incentive to get a hub-gear.

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Taking photos of yourself while biking is tricky, but I think this turned out alright.

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One of the nicest things about this whole loop is that it is smoothly paved the whole way! Very nice for skinny tyres and keeping the speed up.

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Cows! I like cows! They are very photogenic and taste delicious!

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There are no really steep climbs on the loop which is nice. Even though the loop is over 40km, I believe even a novice road rider would have few issues! Plus the scenery is just fantastic!

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And of course, wherever there are fields and hills, there are trees, so they deserve a picture too.

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J and K coming up the last section of Grand Valley Road before we headed east towards Horse Creek Road. Very easily identifiable by the stop signs.

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K coming around the bend and heading east! I think she really enjoyed the ride!

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The connecting road TWP 280 between Grand Valley and Horse Creek Road is very nice, with trees whizzing by you (depending on how fast you pedal) and is quite flat and straight. It’s so very peaceful.

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Having fun with the camera. I sure hope there is no car coming towards me….

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Coming down Horse Creek Road there are some slight downhills and bends in the road. Very fun and quite fast! Again, perfect scenery.

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I was trying to get the camera as close to the road as I could without wiping out or dropping the camera. I think this worked out quite well.

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Riding south on Horse Creek Road gave us a bit of a crosswind, and all the grasses made that nice summer rustling sound that I love so much. Hopefully this photo captures that sound in some way.

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The last stretch of road brought us back in to Cochrane and in view of the mountains. I love living here. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.
The beauty of riding the bike is the quiet and the peace that it creates. There are no motors, no stereos or noisy distractions. Just the road, the bike and your legs hammering away like pistons on your pedals so that you can feel the exhilaration that is road biking. And better yet, the Coke at the end of the ride that you share with friends as you plan your next ride.

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