Biking west on a windy day

Monday I had to bike to Ikea. Strong westerly winds made me hesitate. The challenge was to find a route that avoided traffic AND Aeolus. Success! The blue line shows how I got there, red is how I got back. The short pink lines are where I could have gone to avoid the wind just a little bit more.

First, head towards the Experimental Farm Pathway via Dow’s Lake. Avoid the open fields by biking along the National Capital Commission Scenic Driveway with tall trees on either side.

NCC Scenic Driveway

This takes you to a path through what’s popularly known at as the Enchanted Forest that runs along Fisher. The only wind there is caused by the flutter of fairy wings.

The Enchanted Forest

Beyond Fisher the pathway continues along the edge of the farm. A less windy option would be to follow Kingston Avenue that heads the same way, as shown in pink.

Between Merivale and Maitland the path snakes through a wooded area. All good.

winding path

Now the most exposed area along this path comes next – the stretch between Maitland and Woodroffe. On a blustery day I suggest biking along the residential streets hi-lited in pink past this area. But you’d miss this type of view along the pathway.

Path between Maitland & Woodroffe

Beyond Woodroffe, the path follows a little valley along a stream.

Mini river valley

Then ride down Iris Street, which is protected from the wind by houses and trees on either side. That gets you to Ikea.

Iris Street

To get home, after checking out Firestone Lane….

Firestone Lane

…I re-joined the bike path where it crosses Iris and headed over to the Ottawa River. Now the wind became my best friend! I sailed home. After dark, the oncoming headlights along the driveway are really bright, especially on a moonless night such as it was, but if you don’t let them bother you they make for an interesting contrast between the rush of the river flowing by on the left, while glaring lights rush by the opposite way on your right.

Late Night Driveway Traffic

Author: ottawavelo


2 thoughts on “Biking west on a windy day”

  1. I used to bike home along the river parkway late into the fall… at night. The oncoming headlights made it very hard to stay on the path sometimes, and dangerous for the occasional oncoming bike. Still, the pathway along the river is a fantastic resource to travel west. Cheers, John

    1. Yah, the car headlights were particularly noticeable heading east along the pathway, but not discouraging. I noticed alot of bike commuters coming the other way had two sorts of front lights going at the same time: one flashing, the other stationary. I thought that was clever. I had set my light to stationary to be able to see the path, but missed the ‘Hey I’m here!’ benefits of the flashing light. Those bike commuters had the problem figured out.

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