Rural Road Rambling (Mostly but not exclusive to Southwest Ontario)

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by B10Dave, Jul 26, 2020.

  1. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Location:
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    To the west of Denfield Rd. there is a small rural road that goes under the CP track and over the CN tracks. Shown here are that underpass and bridge. I wasn't ready for the Via train so the pic is a bit out of focus.

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    Going back into London on Oxford St. you come to the CN bridge first and the track also crosses Wonderland just around the corner.

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    Continuing east on Oxford you get to where the CP track crosses the road on a single span and then immediately crosses the Thames River and the bicycle/walking path on an additional three spans.

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    Continued.......
  2. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Following the CN track further into the City of London you come to where there was a terrible marine disaster with great loss of life as explained on the plaque. Just east of this point the track crosses the Thames River.

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    When you get to Wharncliffe Rd. there is an underpass for the road. This has been a bad traffic bottleneck for many years. The city has just this year finished amassing the land needed to widen this road and the CN and Federal Government will be building a new railroad overpass at the same time.

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    East of Wharncliffe Rd. the track crosses the North Branch of the Thames and continues over a small underpass at Thames St.

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    After passing through the downtown part of the city and through the CN yard the track goes under the Highbury overpass which is not picture here and then under the new overpass/round about at Hale St. This also was a bottleneck for traffic for many years as Hale, Trafalgar and the tracks all converged. Now the round about carries traffic over the tracks and makes a seamless intersection of the two busy streets.

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    At this point in the day it was time to start heading home but first I made a stop at a site from my childhood east of the city at Dorchester. When I was young this rail overpass of the small creek didn't have the steel lining the stone culvert. From here I went on home to supper and a few cold beers.
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    Thanks for coming along today and I will post again on this thread in a week or so......Dave.
  3. eaglescan

    eaglescan Borrego rocks

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    some of those underpasses look low enough to remove the AC off my RV !
    Those trestles remind me of the days we would climb up to the top in the dark to catch pigeons. Only about 60 ft above the Fraser river
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  4. eaglescan

    eaglescan Borrego rocks

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    It's a quiet night , so time to hi jack your thread.
    The New Westminster rail bridge.
    [​IMG]
  5. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    In 2014 I was still a wage slave so most of my riding was done on weekends. These pics are from a ride I took on June 29th of that year. It was a beautiful sunny warm day when I left home and headed west on Mapleton Line over to Belmont Rd. (old Hwy 74) where I turned right and rode north up through the village of Belmont, on to and through Nilestown and dropped down into the small valley of the Thames River (south branch). Pics are from the bridge looking east up the river towards Dorchester; at the corner of Catherine St. looking back towards the bridge and then looking west on Catherine towards London.

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    There is another small bridge over Waubuno Creek just before you get to Veteran's Memorial Rd. on the east end of London. These next pics look up and down the creek from the small bridge.

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    From there I went north on Veterans to skirt the east edge of London; past the airport and turned left onto Concession 1 to continue north up to Thorndale Rd. There is another small bridge on this stretch which also crosses Waubuno Creek and I stopped to take pics. My timing was perfect, you can see a doe crossing the creek and in the next pic her fawn following along. Last pic in this post was looking downstream on the other side of the bridge.

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    Continued.........
  6. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    I continued north to Thorndale Rd. where I went left over the Thames River (north branch). I took some pics from the bridge, both up and downstream. This branch meets the south branch at "The Forks of the Thames" in downtown London and continues west as one stream until it empties into Lake St Clair.

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    After crossing the bridge I turned right up Valleyview Rd. to Plover Mills Rd. where I turned east and crossed the Thames again.

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    Continued.......
  7. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    On Plover Mills Rd. I passed this little roadside shrine/miniature chapel built by Ross Heaman ( a fellow I used to work with at the telephone company many years ago) on the corner of his farm. I took the next left at St Ives to go north on Fairview Rd. Another nice stretch of gravel with a couple of small concrete bridges over small streams as it makes it's way up to Hwy. 7 where I turned east towards St Mary's.

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    Continued..........
  8. Chillis

    Chillis Long timer Supporter

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    Your third pic reminds me of the YouTube channel that shows vehicles that run under a bridge and either stop or cut the roofs off of trucks and or trailers.
  9. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Location:
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    From Hwy 7 I turned left onto Road 123 which takes me into the Town of St Mary's..also known as Stonetown because of the many buildings built from locally quarried stone. First you pass the cement plant and then come to the Lind Recreation Complex which consists of a stone quarry turned into a swimming facility and the local curling rink. Behind this can also be found the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and museum.

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    The road then curves to the left to bring you to the downtown area. As I said many of the buildings are built of quarried stone and also some bridge foundations and the towers that carry the two railroad viaducts in town. I went left on the main street and parked just across the bridge over the river. I took some pictures of the weir in the river and a group of Amish who were having a pleasant afternoon of visiting and wading in the river. In the background of one pic can be seen the old Grand Trunk (CNR) viaduct which is now a walking trail.

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    From here I started a loop west of town out to Rannoch and north on Road 163 to Line 16 the road through Motherwell.

    4sun 049.jpg In the last pic we are looking back towards the downtown area and you can see the extensive use of stone in the building construction.

    Continued........
  10. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    On the way up to Line 16 I passed the Mapleview Church Of God In Christ.

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    Line 16 is a pleasant rural paved road that takes you past farms, over the river and on into the almost deserted hamlet of Motherwell.

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    That store has been closed for many years but the building is being kept in good repair. When I was in my early 20's Motherwell was a thriving small community. Amazing what changes happen in 45 years.

    As you continue east you pass a beautiful well kept cut stone house with nice yard.

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    Continued........
  11. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Continuing on Line 16 I passed prosperous farms and stopped at the Avonbank Community Church and cemetery for a look around.

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    Once through the hamlet of Avonbank I continued east over the river and on to the intersection of Perth Road 130 where I turned right back towards St Mary's.

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    Continued........
  12. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Looking through the pics of this day out I surprised myself in that for the whole day I never took a picture of my bike. I would have been riding my 1978 Kawasaki KZ400C1. On Perth 130 I passed a field with some horses doing what horses do on a pleasant summer day.

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    Once back in St Mary's I took pictures of some of the bridges, stone and iron;

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    the stone Town Hall;

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    one of the two railroad stations....this one active....the other one is made of stone and I have learned it is being repurposed into a craft brewery. I guess that will be a reason to ride up here again as soon as spring gets here.

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    The old stone water tower has been replaced with a new steel one. I have the Continental 6 cylinder engine that ran the standby pump to fill this tower in the event of a power failure. When I bought it at an auction it only had 121 hours of run time. I am guessing most of that would have been test run time over the years.

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    From here I made my way home via back roads down through Thorndale (ice cream stop) and Dorchester and on through Gladstone and Crossley-Hunter to my house. Hope you enjoyed my day out and eventually I will post another day ride here.....Dave
  13. chethro

    chethro Long timer

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    That is one pretty town hall! :thumb
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  14. Chillis

    Chillis Long timer Supporter

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    Was going to say the same.
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  15. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    In September of 2019 I called my sister to see if my BIL was interested in a couple of days riding in their area of Ontario. They live in Lindsay; northeast of the "Big Smoke" Toronto. Chris was up for some riding and as he is retired like me we agreed to make it during the week. On Sunday I took a leisurely ride up and over Lake Simcoe just south of Barrie and on to their house. This route allows me to totally bypass Toronto and the stupid heavy traffic. I didn't take any pictures and only stopped once for my lunch. At their place that evening we discussed where we would go on Monday. A trip north to Algonquin Park to look for leaf colour was planned.

    After breakfast on Monday we headed out of Lindsay to Lakefield to look at the Royal Enfields at the dealer there and then north to ride Ontario 507 which is a nice twisty road. I was following Chris as he is very familiar with all the good roads on the way to Algonquin Park He took us through Wilberforce where we stopped for a picture at the mural of the old train station.

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    From there we went east and north to get to Ont. 127 and on up to Hwy 60 which we took westwards to the park proper. All the while riding we were looking for leaf colour and stopping for pics whenever it seemed appropriate.

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    From 127 we turned west on Hwy 60 near Whitney and continued on into the park.

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    Not too far into the park we stopped at an overlook by a lake and had a break while enjoying the quiet and scenery.

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    Continued.......
  16. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Hwy. 60 through Algonquin is a nice smooth interesting road with little traffic through the week. Leaf peepers turn it into a nightmare on the weekends in season.

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    We continued to stop whenever the mood struck us and the colours were worth a picture.

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    We came to a parking area for a walking trail to a dam site so it was off to see the small lake and dam and the stream flowing after the dam. Very pretty country.

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    Continued......
  17. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    After looking at the lake and stream we continued west looking for colour. Once out of Algonquin Park we turned south on Hwy 35 which would take us back to Lindsay eventually. First though was a stop at the observation tower near the village of Dorset to climb up for a view of the surrounding countryside.

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    Continued.......
  18. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    Even though it was a week day the tower was busy with people like me, hoping to catch a glimpse of fall colour at it's best. Unfortunately I think we were about a week early for the best panorama.

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    I am not a person who likes heights; but this tower has steps all the way up and even though the last two flights are on the outside of the tower frame I felt comfortable going up to the top. I had been up it once before about 40 years ago with my wife. My BIL however would only go to the second flight of stairs and no higher. I did not know til then that he is uncomfortable with almost any heights with an open climb. When I came down I looked at the giant binocular sculpture and took pics through the "lens".

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    We then went down into Dorset for a look around and an ice cream at the general store. This store sells everything the cottagers in the area could want. Groceries, beer and liquor, bait and tackle, hunting supplies and guns; outboard motors and fuel, etc..etc...etc. It is a full service Foodtown grocery store and a Home Hardware dealer along with agency's for the provincial liquor commission and the Brewers Warehousing Corporation.



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    Continued..........
  19. B10Dave

    B10Dave Long timer

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    After the ice cream we wandered around for a bit. Dorset is on a short stream between two lakes and sees a lot of boat traffic in the warmer months. There is also lots of snowmobilers in the winter. There is a small marine museum and the steam excursion boat Bigwin sails from Dorset in season. Unfortunately for us the museum was closed for the season .

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    Bigwin Steamship
    Come and visit the newly refurbished Lake of Bays Marine Museum located on Main Street, by the bridge. You can relive history by taking a cruise on the SS Bigwin during one of its schedules cruises or for a special event. Learn more about the history of the lake, check out some remarkable local art, and purchase some novelty SS Bigwin items. Go to www.ssbigwin.com for more information on donations, public cruises, private events and our calendar of events. 1-844-4-BIGWIN (1-844-424-4946)

    Originally owned by James Kuhn of Pittsburgh, PA, she was named Ella Mary and was personal transportation to their island property on Lake Muskoka. Kuhn lost the island in 1925 and the boat was purchased by the Lake Simcoe Navigation Company for $3,500. She was moved by rail and man-power to South Portage on Lake of Bays and re-named Bigwin where she ferried tourists from Norway Point to Bigwin Inn until the inn was closed in 1966.

    The Bigwin sunk in her berth after decades of decay. A group of volunteer firefighters transported her remains to a dry-dock in 1991. It was a 10 year endeavour, but a group of determined fundraisers, ship builders and mechanical specialists envisioned the re-launch of the S.S. Bigwin Ferry on her 100th anniversary.

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    From Dorset we continued south on Hwy 35 to Lindsay where I bought pizza and beer for supper for my sister and BIL. All in all a good riding and colour seeking day....Glad you came along.......Dave
  20. chethro

    chethro Long timer

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    Beautiful ship and lake! :thumb

    My father had a few wood run abouts we used to fish and ski the Ohio river on. I love the look of the varnished wood on the boats from the turn of the century up to the late 60's.
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