Ride from Niagara Falls to Toronto (GO train to Niagara Falls)

Let's ride the scenic route from Niagara Falls to Toronto via Niagara-on-the-Lake and Burlington!!!

 

We'll get there by the GO train service to Niagara Falls ($19.55 one-way adult fare) http://gotransit.com/niagara

We will take the 9:00am train from Union Station, which will bring us to Niagara Falls station at 11:04am. Do not be late, because the train will not wait! I would strongly recommend having bought your ticket and oriented yourself within the station as to our train's track number by 8:45am.

If people would like to join us at a GO station further west than Union, that is fine. The 9:00 am train is scheduled to pass additional stations as follows:

Exhibition: 9:06   Port Credit: 9:18    Oakville 9:29    Burlington 9:40

I'll be sending out my contact info to registered riders the day before the ride. For those hopping on a later stop, please feel free to text or call me and I can tell you the exact car that the everyone is in.


This roughly 160km route is epic, but we'll take it slowly so that riders of all abilities can join. Expect a pace of about 18 to 24 km/h.

But, pretty please, for your own enjoyment, make sure that you can ride at least 20km/h consistently, all day long. A long trip like this is not the time to find out that the speed is too much for you and you are completely out of energy midway between Niagara Falls and Burlington (while I think the Vineland area is very nice, you wont enjoy paying the cab fare home from there!)

 

The ride will last over 9 hours with rest stops, and those who tire early can optionally take the GO train back from Burlington, saving about 60km.

Here is a rough map of the route:
http://g.co/maps/5kadv

 

We'll plan two major rest stops, with plenty of mini stops along the way. Our first stop once off the train will be the Niagara Falls, of course. We'll take the obligatory photos and then carry on to Niagara-on-the-Lake. There we'll have our first major stop for brunch. There are a number of nice cafes on the main street, we can establish a consensus which one to pick while there.

From there we'll have a long riding segment, stopping every 60 to 75 minutes for water/snacks/stretching. (Please bring your own nutritious snacks and water bottles!)

Once we reach Burlington we'll take our second major break. There are a number of eating establishments near the lakeside park there we can choose from.

On the final 60km leg we'll push it (we should also have the prevailing wind at our backs) with only a couple of stops before we get to the Humber bridge, which will be our fait accompli point!

I, personally, live east of the core so I will continue along the lake shore, towards our starting point, Union Station. I would invite everyone who has made it that far to celebrate our efforts by joining me for a beverage and some food at one of the patios on the Esplanade.

 

Due to the length of the ride it is really important that you and your bike are in top condition. If there's a rattle or squeak that's been nagging you for a while, find the time to go see the chiropractor or bike mechanic, as the case may be, to sort it out. This will ensure that your experience on this ride is as enjoyable as possible! Also, please bring lights for your bike since it is quite likely that we'll be arriving in the city at or around sunset, and you still want to get home safely.

Also a note about safety and liability: Nobody is responsible for your safety and well-being other than you. Not the ride organizers, the TBM group, Meetup, nor any other riders. You are extremely encouraged to wear a helmet, wear sunscreen, have a bell on your bike, drink lots of water and otherwise act reasonably and prudently. Hurting yourself in a fall or falling ill due to heat stroke, or worse, are risks that you are agreeing to assume if you come on this ride.

 

I am really looking forward to going on this ride with you all, I know we will have an amazing time on this great adventure! For those of you who can't make it on this date, don't worry, I do intend to do at least one other ride similar to this this summer. Stay tuned to TBM for more details!

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  • Andy Z.

    Thanks everyone for uploading your photos! I finally posted the group photo we shot at the horseshoe falls: http://www.meetup.com/TorontoBikeMeetup/photos/9352272/133584352/

    June 27, 2012

  • Alina C. S.

    This was my first meetup, first group ride, and first time doing a long distance. Loved it! Really nice group of people. Hope to do this again real soon.

    June 26, 2012

  • Sumner

    loved it. especially the section from the Falls to Niagara on the Lake and then from Hamilton to Burlington. I'll go again and shoot for the whole enchilada next time.

    June 24, 2012

  • Mario

    Awesome challenge with a great group people!

    June 24, 2012

  • Karen

    despite a few flat tires along the way, had a great time! beautiful weather, excellent scenery, and friendly bunch of people. would do again!

    June 24, 2012

  • Kate

    It was my first 100km ride. Not easy, but definitely worth it! Nice group of people

    June 24, 2012

  • Marcos

    Awesome ride with very nice people. Thanks, Andy, for organizing this trip and the support on the road.

    June 24, 2012

  • Marc

    Had an awesome time, made it all the way from Niagara Falls to Toronto. Can't for another epic ride!

    June 24, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Lot's of fun! Great group of cyclists!

    June 24, 2012

  • Donald S.

    Didn't go the whole route, but still covered 121 km, the most I have ever ridden in a single day.

    June 24, 2012

  • Jeff

    Amazing

    June 24, 2012

  • Eliana V

    I am so so sad I had to show up to work today. Andy, please make another one. (the last week of July and first of august I wont be here, otherwise I am in). You guys have fuuunnnnn...

    June 23, 2012

  • Jim I

    I tried to RSVP last night but missed the cutoff, I'm at the Oakville Go platform right now just about to get on the train, see you there.

    June 23, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    Just an fyi for everyone, we are into the third car from the front of the train. I you're getting on put your bike on the second car and then walk back and up to join everyone here.

    June 23, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    @Marcos, it was a nice coincidence to run into you and your wife tonight in Port Credit during the rest stop of the High Park/Port Credit ride. I'm amazed you spotted me just standing there outside the Starbucks! Looking forward to riding with you tomorrow.

    June 23, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    Karen, it just went out one minute ago! : )

    June 23, 2012

  • Karen

    @andy. i don't think i received the email with your cell. can you send it again?

    June 23, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    Hey Wayne, you can definitely avoid those stairs; we won't really be taking them, I think their use is just a sign of Google Maps being pedantic about following designated routes. If your recumbent is too wide for the sidewalk you can just ride across the bridge on the roadway. It is a lift bridge and has a quite coarse mesh surface, so most riders will want to avoid the actual roadway part and use the sidewalk. I've ridden across it before, however, and it isn't problematic, albeit a bit bumpy.

    June 23, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    Hey Oleg, we are starting at the Niagara Falls VIA/Amtrak rail station, point #1 on this map: http://g.co/maps/5kadv If you are getting dropped off then parking shouldn't be a problem (afaik there is lots around that part of Niagara Falls). The train is scheduled to arrive at 11:04am. A number of people will probably want to use the washroom facilities at the station so we'll be there plenty of time for you to find us!

    June 23, 2012

  • Wayne

    Hi! We were studying your map and have a question where it says "81. Turn left to stay on Waterfront Trail Take the stairs". Given the size of our recumbents, it is very difficult to portage them. Can you confirm if indeed there are flights of stairs and whether we can go around them?

    June 22, 2012

  • Maria

    Hurt my leg at work a few days ago and it's not feeling any better. One more week of work ... so i just can't risk going the distance on this one. :(

    June 22, 2012

  • Eliana V

    hey guys, Ill probably have to drop off because of work (will know more specific tonight). If this is the case I'll be hoping to make it the next time. Andy, please make another one of this ride, I really want to do it. If I can't make it I wish you all a very good time. The weather will be good. Lots of water.... Cheers

    June 22, 2012

  • Karen

    @ Marcos. Sweet. It should be pretty easy to spot each other with our bikes!

    June 22, 2012

  • Chad

    ugh. unfortunately, I got pretty bad heat stroke yesterday and I feel really crappy today. Im gonna have to come on the next one :(

    June 22, 2012

  • Oleg

    Chances are that I'll be dropped off in Niagara. Andy, can you post where exactly in Niagara Falls are we starting and yeah, phone number so we can find everybody.

    June 22, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    I'm getting excited with tomorrow's ride fast approaching. Getting all my stuff together like sunscreen, power bars, tube repair kit. This will be an awesome ride! For all those not getting on the train at Union, we'll try to be in the car nearest the two bike cars. That should be the 5th car from the locomotive (bike cars are #6 & 7). If you want to confirm the group's location on the train, just text me. (I'll send out my cell number by email) It's going to be a beautiful day to ride tomorrow!

    June 22, 2012

  • Marcos

    @ Karen, my wife and I will be getting on at Port Credit. We'll be taking the 9:18am train. See you there if you're coming too.

    June 21, 2012

  • Donald S.

    I'll be getting on the train at Exhibition.

    June 21, 2012

  • Karen

    Anyone getting on at port credit?

    June 21, 2012

  • Mario

    Anyone taking the GO train from the east end, either Rouge, Guildwood, Eglinton or Scarborough to Union on the Saturday? I'm looking for another not so savvy GO user :)

    June 20, 2012

  • Joey S.

    Definitely going. Truing my rims and adjusting my brakes and gears, cleaning my chain. Can't wait.

    June 20, 2012

  • Chad

    Hope you get better Constant. Lol @ Andy. The Constant Niagra run 2012 :)

    June 20, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    OMG Constant, that's terrible news! I hope you're going to be all right. Get well soon! We'll do the ride on your behalf and take lots of pictures : )

    June 20, 2012

  • Connie

    Im sad that I can't go. I got into a bike accident that resulted me with a concussion over the weekend. Ride for me :'(

    June 20, 2012

  • Fred

    Gel saddle could be good. That being said, cycling shorts will be a god-send for your bottoms since you'll likely be in the saddle for 9 hours total.

    1 · June 17, 2012

  • Maria

    I'm doing it on my hybred. I have never timed my rides but I'm hoping to keep up ...
    Thank you for the helpful list Chad and I will add my 2 cents worth ... a gel seat if you don't have cycle shorts. :)

    June 17, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    @Mehrdad, don't be sad, even if you can't make it out this Saturday, there will be more rides like this in the summer!

    June 17, 2012

  • Mehrdad

    :(

    June 16, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    @Barbara Hood and @Constant: I think both your rides will work fine for this. As long as you have a fairly efficient bike you'll do great. That said, a few years ago a guy rode this on his too-small, knobby-tired $100 CCM mountain bike. It's all doable, just a less-efficient bike. Do expect your bum to be sore and your legs to feel like jelly at the end of the day, but a city bike or single-speed should be just fine. : )

    June 15, 2012

  • Andy Z.

    I updated the event listing with lots more details about the ride. I'm thrilled at the number of people signed up for this and I'm looking forward to meeting you all!

    June 15, 2012

  • Chad

    Some important things for such a journey. Water, spare bike tubes, air, snacks, bandaids, hat, sunglasses, any type of pain medication if you take it, money for food bus or unexpected repairs, comfortable shoes. Also, it is a pretty big distance, so it would be a good idea to start eating properly, lotsa carbs n proteins, so you have a good storage for the ride. Maybe take a few small bike rides between here and then to keep yer muscles loose and in shape. And a good nights sleep :) lol

    2 · June 11, 2012

  • Connie

    I hope I can keep up. I have a single speed. It'd be nice to have a prep list of what to bring on this trip.. Any suggestions?

    June 9, 2012

  • RobG

    @Suz - you could easily drop out at Hamilton, Burlington, Oakville, Mississauga and take the GO train back to Toronto.

    1 · June 9, 2012

  • Barbara H.

    Hey! Like Keira I'm a bit worried that my city bike isn't suited for such an epic journey. It's quick and capable of keeping over 24km/h for extended rides but it's definitely not a road bike - think track bike but with brakes. What does most of the group ride? And is there any necessary equipment (other than decent shorts)?

    June 9, 2012

  • RobG

    I've done this ride twice on a mountain bike with city slick tires. A hybrid bike is totally possible. The route is mostly flat.

    June 1, 2012

  • Keira

    Hello, I was interested in joining you all on the Niagara trip. I've never been out with you before so I'm not sure if I could keep up. I don't have a speed bike and was wondering if anyone else going rides hybrids? I've never really timed my speed before so not sure.

    1 · June 1, 2012

  • Marcos

    It sounds fun. Ride safely.

    May 29, 2012

  • RobG

    This was fun last time I did it with TBM, so hopefully I will join.

    May 29, 2012

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