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GO Train to Niagara Falls

Hi all. The GO Train Niagara Falls special is running again, so let`s take a trip down to Niagara Falls for the day.

The GO Train bike special to Niagara Falls comes with two cars specially outfitted with bike racks on their lower level, so you can put your bike on board and then go sit on the second level. In addition, two bikes can go in the ends of most GO train cars.

The special leaves Union Station at 9 AM, and stops at Exhibition at 9:06. Note that the train then stops ONLY at Port Credit, Oakville, and Burlington, it doesn't make all the usual stops.

We should meet up on the concourse level of Union Station by 8:30 AM, so we have plenty of time to get our tickets. We'll be going to St. Catharines, and returning from Niagara Falls, the total cost will be about $40. If you want to meet the train at one of the other stops, that's fine, just let me know.

Please note that I am going to limit this ride to 25 people total, as there is only so much space for bikes on the train. You can't reserve bike space in advance, it is first-come-first-served. We've managed to get a group this big on board in the past. So if you sign up and your plans change, PLEASE change your RSVP to give someone else a chance.

Once we arrive in St. Catharines (about 10:30 AM), we'll head to the Waterfront Trail, which we will follow to Niagara-on-the-Lake, and then down the Niagara River Trail to Niagara Falls.

Total distance will be in the 55-60 km range. The ride will be on quiet streets and dedicated bike trails. The trains back to Toronto leave at 7:20 PM and 9:30 PM. Based on previous experience if we keep a pace in the 18 - 20 km/hr range we should have time to see the Falls and then have some dinner at the Taps Brewing Company near the train station and then catch the 7:20 PM train back.

This is a really nice ride so let's hope for some good weather.

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  • Robert

    Hi Don,

    That was a great ride apart from the accidents. I hope Mary got home quickly and is making a speedy and full recovery. Maria seemed to bounce back and recover nicely enroute.

    Attached is a link to the GPS map and data of our ride. Our fellow riders can click the link to view, the route, speed, time, elevation, grade, temperature etc. It appears the Queenston Hill climb was about a 15% grade. Quite a substantial climb.

    The chart under the map shows the elevation (hills and flats) along the route. At the bottom right of the screen is a playback button which will rerun the ride, the little green flag will start to move after awhile. You can increase the playback speed as well.

    My route will differ slightly from yours, cause Cynthia, Bill and I took a different route to Lakeshore Road after we helped Mary get a cab.

    Click this link:
    http://ridewithgps.com/trips/1503331?privacy_code=V1MCmgeIBo0BlmKN

    July 16, 2013

    • Robert

      Hi Cynthia, you are welcome. I did the road and am glad I did, as I find steep climbs tougher on trails as there is less room to move when you encounter other riders going the other way. Last year i did the same ride from Niagara Falls to St. Catherines, and I think the Queenston Heights climb was easier east bound.

      July 20, 2013

    • Donald S.

      The Heights are *much* easier when approached from the Niagara side.

      July 23, 2013

  • mary R.

    Robert!
    I was struggling to get your name correct..(Cynthia and Bill I knew from a previous ride.)
    THANK - YOU so much for your help!!!
    mary

    July 16, 2013

    • Robert

      Hi Mary, you are very welcome, were you able to get a bus quickly?

      July 17, 2013

    • mary R.

      Yes- the bus was there when the cab pulled up:)

      July 17, 2013

  • mary R.

    It was there when the cab pulled up:)

    July 17, 2013

  • Mona

    Wonderful ride and a lovely group. Thanks Don for organizing such a fantastic ride.

    July 16, 2013

  • Debbie

    Very fun ride - Thanks to Donald for organizing! Nice meeting everyone on this trip.

    July 15, 2013

  • Kirsten

    Great ride, very challenging in the heat but interesting route, great scenery and lovely people. Looking forward to the next one, even if I have to wait a year!

    July 15, 2013

  • mary R.

    Fun! Good chat and laughs

    July 15, 2013

  • Jeff

    The train ride was good, lots of space, good company.

    July 14, 2013

  • Maz

    A great route with a really fun group of people. I had a lot of fun and it was a wonderful choice of restaurant at the route end too. Thanks Donald for another awesome route ...

    July 14, 2013

  • Denise I

    More eventful than usual with a couple of accidents and a tire puncture. But, the route was beautiful and interesting. The ride was just challenging enough. Everyone was friendly even in the sweltering heat.

    July 14, 2013

  • Cynthia C.

    As usual, Donald, yet again you led a wonderful ride and we enjoyed ourselves immensely! Great group of riders and had a really fun day. Thank you!!

    July 14, 2013

  • David B.

    Sorry can't make it, just found out I have a family reunion tomorrow. Have fun guys!

    July 14, 2013

  • Donald S.

    Now there's no waiting list at all! BTW, my cell is[masked] if anyone needs it. Prefer texts unless its complicated.

    July 13, 2013

  • Donald S.

    3) Our complete route is show at the link. There really are not any places you can simply drop out of the ride, so please make sure you feel you are up for it. The ride from St. Catharine's to Niagara-on-the-Lake is quite flat, while the ride down the Niagara Trail to the Falls is the comparatively hilly part. If you don't feel up to it at Niagara-on-the-Lake, you might want to just bike back to St. Catharine's and get the train back there.

    http://goo.gl/maps/Rb22C

    July 13, 2013

    • Maz

      I'm up for the terrain but I do like to be mentally prepared so when you say "down to the falls" ... the steepness is mostly downhill? Love up ... but not so much love on the down, but I'll cope. Thanks

      July 13, 2013

    • Donald S.

      I meant "down" as in going south. There's only one real hill at Queenston Heights and we're going up it, so lucky you. :-)

      July 13, 2013

  • Ela

    I'm attending another meetup

    1 · July 13, 2013

  • John B

    Changed my rsvp to NO. Will drive as planned. Another spot on the fun air conditioned train.

    July 13, 2013

  • Frank F.

    I cannot go on the ride please give it another member

    July 13, 2013

  • Marc

    Sorry everybody, something came up late minute. My guest & I are not able to make it. Hopefully this gives enough time for 2 more people to sign up for this ride.

    July 13, 2013

  • avi

    Damn work!!!!! Enjoy the beautiful day and ride.

    July 13, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    work calls

    July 13, 2013

  • Donald S.

    Hi all. Some final points for our ride tomorrow...

    1) As always, if your plans change please change your RSVP ASAP, so someone else gets a chance to go.

    2) Try to be at Union Station by 8:30 AM to give you plenty of time to get your ticket and get ready to board the train (leaves at 9 AM). If you are running late DO NOT try to track us down or find us, just get a space on the train as QUICKLY as you can. You'll have plenty of time to find us on the train during the trip to St. Catharine's (you can walk between cars freely).

    July 13, 2013

  • Donald S.

    4) We'll be having dinner at the Taps Brewing Company, 4680 Queen Street, about 2 minutes ride away from the Niagara Falls train station (there's a marker on the map). If anyone thinks they'll want to ride ahead of us, please note this location and we can all meet up there later.

    5) Bring PLENTY of water, it looks like it's going to be hot.

    See you tomorrow!

    Donald Simmons

    July 13, 2013

  • Grant

    Hey sorry for late drop out. Fighting a cold so better stay home.

    July 12, 2013

  • John B

    OK... Kirsten now has a spot on the fun GO train, so the place in my not as much fun truck is vacant. First come first serve. Text me at sixfoursevenfivezerofivethreefiveonezero or call my home at fouronesixsevensixseventhreefourfiveone.

    July 10, 2013

    • Robert

      Hi John, Booking the seat ...

      July 11, 2013

  • John B

    Hey AJ... (and Kirsten) Re your third possibility, AJ - Way easier. I didn't assume/know the train returning the group to Toronto will stop in St Catherines. IF THAT'S CONFIRMED, it's a done deal. And Kirsten - you're welcome to ride with me. I live near the Runnymede subway station - could we meet there at at 8:30?

    July 9, 2013

    • A.J. P.

      Hi John. Thank you. Just confirmed (on the GO web site & on the phone) the 7:20 train from Niagara Falls does stop in St. Catherines. Fare is $6.10.

      July 10, 2013

    • John B

      Thanks, AJ... I couldn't check anything until a few hours ago, when internet service was finally restored here at home, where everything was down except the running water... We're good to go!

      July 10, 2013

  • A.J. P.

    I'm planning to drive to St. Catherines with Alex and meet the group there. Changing my RSVP to no, to allow someone on the wait list.

    1 · July 9, 2013

    • Frank F.

      Hi AJ you asked what part of the I live in, I am at Jameson and King, just off of the Gardner Expressway, if you have room let me know, are you going on the Thursday night ride?

      July 10, 2013

  • Frank F.

    Looking for a ride to Niagara for this ride will split gas expense and any others I can be contacted at[masked], thanks

    July 10, 2013

  • Kirsten

    Hi John,

    Looks as though in the meantime I've moved up from the waiting list onto the confirmed list so best to offer the ride to someone still on the waiting list. Many thanks for the option. Looking forward to the ride.

    July 10, 2013

  • John B

    Carpool option for waiting list... Plan A - Car shuttle (example 2 cars, 4 riders). Both cars drive to St Catherines. We drop off the bikes at the trailhead (locking them up or leaving one rider to stand guard). Both cars proceed to NF. One car is left there - the other car goes back to the trailhead. After the Taps party, the car left in NF takes riders and bikes back to St Catherines to pick up car left there. NOTE 1: Car left in NF must take 4 people and 4 bikes back to St. Catherines. Note 2: My vehicle is a 2-seater pickup which can easily take 5 bikes BUT only 1 passenger. Unless 2 adventurous passengers are willing to ride in the back (under the cap) in traditional Moosonee style. Plan B - Niagara on the Lake - Niagara Falls - Niagara on the Lake loop for carpoolers - described in reply to Kirsten - is less complicated. Either option OK with me.

    July 9, 2013

    • A.J. P.

      A third possiblity. Drive to St. Catherines. Ride to Niagara Falls. Take the GO train back to St. Catherines. Find the car in the parking lot.

      July 9, 2013

  • John B

    Hi, all... I didn't get on the train, BUT I could take my truck with a passenger and second bike. Cost will be less than the train but sadly no AC. Text me at sixfoursevenfivezerofivethreefiveonezero if you are interested.

    July 8, 2013

    • Kirsten

      Hi John, Do you still have the space in your truck? I don't have a mobile phone at the moment (indeed!) or would have texted you. I'm still on the waiting list so a ride would be great. Thanks.

      July 9, 2013

    • John B

      Hey all (particularly Kirsten): I just realized this is a one-way trip, so doing it by carpool will involve a complicated vehicle shuttle (as is done on one-way hikes). Do-able but complicated. OR... PLAN B for Carpoolers --- meet the group at Niagara on the Lake, ride to NF with the group, party with the group at Taps, and then ride back to Niagara on the Lake while the rest of the group is sobering up on the train.

      July 9, 2013

  • A.J. P.

    Anyone interested in sharing cost of gas? I have a vehicle and bike rack for two. So have room for one person and their bike. Prefer someone near me in North York, as I'm near Yonge & Steeles. Please reply to me or text at fouronesixfivesixsixfourzeroeightfive. I do have a/c. LOL. Thanks.

    July 8, 2013

    • Alex A.

      99% i am in, since you have A/C... lol. I am Yonge and Clark, pretty close.

      July 8, 2013

  • Donald S.

    I just want to say that the wait list is to control how many people show up for the train at Union Station, to ensure that we don't have to turn people away from the train because it's full. If people can get to St. Catherines in some other way, they are more than welcome to meet us there and come along on the ride.

    July 7, 2013

  • Huong N.

    Hi Don,
    I'd like to join the waitlist for this event, but I can also try to do this on our own. Would love to meet up with your group though for the ride from St. Catherine's to Niagara and then the pub. Can you inbox me to let me know if thats ok?

    July 7, 2013

  • Cynthia C.

    Bill and I are on the waiting list. Hopefully a few spots will open up!

    July 6, 2013

  • Lisa

    I have always wanted to do this! Thanks for organizing Donald.

    July 3, 2013

    • Donald S.

      And I know that the restaurant in question is actually still open, i was there on the weekend.

      July 3, 2013

  • Jeff

    I am looking forward to this. I may have a guest but I wont be sure until tonight or tomorrow so I'll only put myself as coming.

    July 3, 2013

  • Judy P

    Wish I could, now my son returns from Greece and Serbia that day and I said I would get him at the airport! Darn,,,, next fun one

    July 3, 2013

    • Donald S.

      I'll likely do this ride again before the train stops running.

      July 3, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    This sounds like an awesome event but I have plans already.

    July 3, 2013

    • Donald S.

      I'll likely do this again befor ethe train stops running.

      July 3, 2013

  • albert

    Hi Don, Sounds like fun! I plan on catching the GO train at Port Credit and then hooking up with you guys. Is the $40 approx cost of train ticket and dinner? THX

    July 3, 2013

    • Joe S

      The Go Train return to Union Stn is $40. Not sure how much it is from Port Credit.

      July 3, 2013

  • mary R.

    Can't wait!

    July 3, 2013

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