Well, it turns out we do it about once a year. We did it in 2011 exactly twice (read about it here and here). Yesterday was our 2013 trip.
On the bright side, the actual connector trail that actually connects the path from the east gates of Banff Park to the west end of Canmore officially opened this morning. The Town of Canmore did quite a nice job on this "new" start of the trail, including putting up a big board that tells you how many people are using the trail. They started it from the Provincial Visitor Information Centre, which has a fair amount of parking.
But the nicest part about this is that the bike crazies no longer ride down Harvie Heights Road, meaning that terrible bicyclist behaviour is no longer something I have to deal with -- for the trail etiquette that I have complained about in the past is still there. Trail users still:
- Ride side by side and won't give you space to pass in either direction;
- Generally don't call out they are passing you, so maniacs go hurtling by and startle you;
- Stop randomly and block the path;
- Commonly don't wear helmets.
We're having a late summer heatwave, it was a good day to do the ride in 30° sunshine.
|From the one stopping point on the trail|
|The Cascade River going under the tracks|
|Serious flow in the culvert|
|The literal "end" in Banff|
As usual, we worked our way through town, and rode all the way down Vermillion Lakes Road.
|Some fall colour on the shores|
|Classic Mt. Rundle|
|Dramatic afternoon lighting|
|The Sundance range|
It was a nice, if hot, afternoon. The ride back was fast, as usual, since there was a tailwind and it's sort of downhill. So we are once again glad we did it, and will return next year to ride it again.
But only once.