6 of the best places to ride your bike in P.E.I.
'There's trails for everyone'
Between the rolling hills and pastoral scenery, there are many, many places to go for a bike ride on P.E.I.
"There's trails for everyone, regardless of if you're just using it to commute, or you want to exercise or off-road or on-road," said Brett Doyle, owner of Outer Limit Sports.
We asked avid Island cyclists to tell us about their favourite places to ride.
1. The Argyle Shore Loop
Mike Connolly, executive director of Cycling P.E.I., often goes for road rides along the Argyle Shore loop — which isn't far from his home in Crapaud.
"It's very scenic and very challenging, you can make it longer or short," he said.
"There's a 17-kilometre loop and a 30-kilometre loop that you can extend. Very challenging with some of the hills back there through Rocky Point … low traffic volume and it's just a nice road to train on and to ride for recreationally, scenically and with low traffic volumes."
2. Robinsons Island
"If you're riding a hybrid bike, for example, or your riding with small children, Robinsons Island is a great ride," said Doyle. "Those are great trails, real easy for any age level or any skill level."
He often rides with his children — aged 9 and 11 — who are also both avid cyclists.
"It's fun to see the excitement in their eyes, because it kind of allows you to relive the excitement that I had."
3. The Union Road
Travis Saunders, an assistant professor at UPEI and avid cyclist, enjoys biking along the Union Road in Charlottetown, which starts just behind the airport.
"It's a really nice, sort of scenic road with a lot of nice fields and it's got just a nice amount of hills and enough little turns," he said.
4. The P.E.I. National Park
There are lots of cycling trails in the P.E.I. National Park.
Graham Miner, director of P.E.I.'s Highway Safety Division, likes riding along Gulf Shore Way East between Brackley Beach and Dalvay-by-the-Sea.
"Just going up there, especially if it's in the evening, because you have the sunsets that are occurring there and of course the lighthouse," he said.
"The scenery is very nice with the sand dunes and the water and as the sun is setting. It's a great spot. And it's flat, which is a big bonus," Graham Miner.
Doyle recommends the Homestead Trail, also in the park, as another kid-friendly ride. The trails is 6.7 km or 8.8 km and starts at the entrance of Cavendish Campground.
Sarah Dennis of Charlottetown echoed the endorsement for the Homestead Trail, for its "amazing views and wild bunnies."
5. Mark Arendz Provincial Ski Park at Brookvale
It's a favourite of many mountain bikers, including Brett Doyle, owner of Outer Limit Sports.
"I really like the mountain biking, the technical stuff, and they're really fun, they're really flowy, there's a lot of big berms, there's some four-foot walls, there's tabletop jumps, so those are really good. I find those really exciting," he said.
Mike Connolly, executive director of Cycling P.E.I.,agreed that the trails provide a good challenge.
"There's big climbs, big descents, there's technical features in Brookvale — so very fun, flowy, challenging trails," he said.
It's also a favourite of Justin Ellis — an avid mountain biker and co-owner of Sacred Rides P.E.I., a mountain biking tour guide service.
"They've recently done a lot of work out there and it kind of has something for everybody. It has challenging hills … but it also has very smooth, beginner friendly loops and for the more experienced people there's trails that are a little harder to find," Justin Ellis.
6. Bonshaw and Strathgartney
Another great spot for mountain biking is Strathgartney and Bonshaw Provincial Parks — a favourite of Patrick Cheverie's.
"It dries up really early in the season so you can get a good run at it and practice it. There's some pretty tricky climbs in there and just go across the road to Bonshaw and bomb down the big hills," said the avid cyclist and warranty manager at Sporting Intentions.
Bonshaw's just got a good mix of trails now," agreed Ben Instone, bike department manager at Sporting Intentions.
"It's got intermediate, beginner, advanced trails, they've done a lot of work there, it's just a really nice place to ride."