As much fun as it can be to pack up and head to the airport in pursuit of custom cycle tours through Burgundy, or a seaside journey along the rugged Italian coastline, sometimes it’s nice to keep it simple. And by simple we don’t mean plain. Simple, in west coast terms, means easy access to Super Natural trails, terrains, and habitats, without the addition of mind-bending line-ups and egregious baggage fees.
Is it wrong to want it all?
For relative proximity to a mix of spectacular cycle-worthy parks and pathways, head to Discovery Trail. Rated as one of TripAdvisor’s top picks, this Abbotsford treasure offers a mix of stunning rides, and resplendent routes, suitable for every level of cyclist.
Spanning west to east from Gardner Park to Sumas Mountain, 45 kilometres of paved and unpaved trails takes you through picnic areas, marshes, wetlands and farmlands.
Cyclists can choose to conquer the full 45, or break the ride up a bit and focus on stretches best suited to particular levels of experience, and thrill-seeking proclivities.
A great ride for the kids is the 18 km stretch from Fish Creek to Gardner park. For the more seasoned cyclist, Discovery East offers 28 kms of pulse-elevating paths from Willband Creek all the way to the Sumas Dyke. Easy access to 5 or 10 km rides can be found within some of the parks located along the trail, including Clearbrook Park, Willband Park and Townline Hill Park.
Things to keep in mind:
• Remember to arm yourself with an excellent map. Discovery Trail is not one continuous stretch; instead, it’s broken into several sections so you’ll want to know exactly where to enter and how you plan to loop back. Although the trails are marked, determining your route by shooting from the hip has every potential to eclipse any whisper of serenity all that summer meadow air was meant to instil.
• If you’re bringing the kiddos, make sure you know which part of the trail is suited to their skill level. Some parts of the west side of the trail can be very steep and consequently, not recommended for children.
• Pack your panniers with water and snacks. If you’re planning to make a full afternoon of your trip to Discovery Trail, pack a picnic. We guarantee you’ll be starved after all of that outdoor adventuring and unless you’re familiar with the Abbotsford area, you may have trouble finding the local restaurants.
• Sections of the trail are prone to seasonal flooding so if you’ve filed this ride under “Lower Mainland Must-Cycles… Some Day” make sure to check conditions before heading out.
• Above all: If it’s been a while since you’ve busted out the bikes, make sure your equipment is in tip-top shape and ready for the ride you’ve planned. For a quick tune-up, pop by Reckless Bikes. We offer comprehensive service, and we’re friendly, flexible, and knowledgeable as heck.