While B.C. and Alberta may put the “mountain” in mountain biking, Ontario still manages to acquit itself well when it comes to mountain bike (MTB) trails. The Niagara Escarpment definitely helps, and there are lots of other spots in the province where you can get a ride in and not feel like you were just spinning your wheels. Here are just a few of our favourites.
1. 3 Stage, Collingwood
Forty kilometres of mostly single track trails in the Pretty River Valley Provincial Park, 3 Stage (known as 3 Stages on some websites) is ideal for the experienced rider who wants a fast, technical ride with some great downhill runs. According to reviewers, a GPS unit (or a local who knows the trails) is a must, as there isn’t much signage and it’s easy to get lost. If you want more serious downhill action, head into Collingwood and check out the hills at Blue Mountain. They offer lessons and equipment rentals, so if you’re not a regular downhiller, no worries—this is a great place to try it out without making an expensive commitment.
2. Macaulay Mountain Conservation Area, Prince Edward County
As one website put it, the trails at Macaulay Mountain run from “easy to insane”—and while there are easier sections, most of the densely packed trails are best suited to intermediate and advanced riders. The layout is evidence that the Bloomfield Cycling Club—which maintains the trails—enjoys twists, turns, steep climbs, and descents and a whole lot of challenge. It’s not a huge area—the trails are packed into about 20 kilometres—but it’s worth the trip. If you get sick of biking (as if), check out Birdhouse City to see more than 100 birdhouses, many replicas of famous buildings.