Of all the Costco’s in the region, the one in Gatineau is the most accessible by bike from neighbourhoods in and around downtown Ottawa. A couple of riders who regularly pedal out there were very kind to let me tag along on their latest shopping adventure.
Because everything is sold in bulk at Costco, I put out a request for suggestions on which bike trailers would best be able to handle a big load. The overwhelming favourite were those manufactured by Wike out of Guelph Ontario. Giacomo was very kind to lend me his Heavy Duty Flatbed Bike Trailer he uses to roast his Bike Hibachi Pigskin Pork Tenderloin. It performed extremely well on this Costco test ride.
Here’s how it all panned out. Blue line is the way we got there. Purple line is how we got back.
We started off from the Woonerf on Cambridge St North in Centretown.
We accessed the Ottawa River Pathway at the bottom of Nanny Goat Hill and followed multi-use paths all the way to Pointe-Gatineau on the east side of the Gatineau River.
From there we wove our way along paths through Parc la Baie and combination of quiet residential streets. We encountered a bit of a hic along the path entering Parc la Baie where car discouraging bollards weren’t wide enough to let two of our trailers through. This was a minor irritant as we were able to hoist our empty trailers over the bollards. The only busy intersection was across Chemin de la Savane as we approached our destination.
After a stop at the La trappe à fromage, we made our way a through the huge adjacent Costco parking lot to the bike racks at the entrance. The store has a tall extended entrance canopy that smells of car tires (imagine eau de Canadian Tire).
I loaded as much as I would have on a typical car run and even had room for more, especially if I had brought rear rack panniers.
Mr One Wheel Drive managed to load 237 lbs (!) on his custom made trailer, like so.
The bike path along Boulevard de la Gappe described in this post passes by the Costco one block north so we followed it on the way back.
I managed to click this final image as we headed over the Rapid-Transit bridge before it got dark.
The path network gets a little labyrinthian from Lac Leamy to downtown Gatineau. I’ve heard all efforts at introducing directional signage through this maze have been covered up with spray paint, so a couple of dry runs with Google Maps in hand is highly recommended.
Update – Patrick filmed a subsequent trip we made to Costco following the purple route, which turned out like so!