Tuesday, October 06, 2015

September on Bikes

Looking through my photo album from September and 90% of the photos were taken with us on bikes. Guess it's fair to say we did a lot of riding this past month. And I got a new bike! I'm now the proud owner of a Norco Charger Mountain Bike and it's a pretty smooth ride! For the first time in my life, I have a bike with disc brakes and I'm learning to squeeze lightly!

My NEW bike!

This story is going to be heavy on photos, light on text - which is good if you don't like reading. Mostly, I just wanted to share some of our highlights from the past month (which has been really quiet on my blog.)

September Long Weekend Biking

September started with a cold rainy weekend and a cancelled trip to Waterton Lakes National Park. We traded our campsite for a warm cozy condo in Radium Hot Springs and decided to go biking in the sunny Columbia Valley instead. And while it wasn't very sunny (and still rainy,) it was at least warmer than Waterton would have been. And we did still manage to spend a lot of time on our bikes.

Spending the September long weekend on our bikes in the Columbia Valley

The best thing to come of the September long weekend was that we discovered a new place to go mountain biking in the Columbia Valley. We drove down to Fairmont and checked out the mysterious "Spirit Trail" that we'd heard about during the summer. The verdict: Must spend more time biking here and figuring out the trail system. Good thing I was planning on returning the following weekend!

Easy riding in Fairmont on the Spirit Trail

Girls Bike Day in Banff

Quite possibly the best bike ride I had this entire summer was on the Water Tower Trail in Banff with my girlfriends. We were on our way to the Columbia Valley for the weekend (two weekends in a row for me)  but decided to go biking in Banff Friday afternoon en route.

Biking the Water Tower Trail in Banff
I'd tried this bike ride with my son and husband earlier in July and Noah was not a "fan." We rode the trail a bit differently this time though as an out and back ride and skipped hiking down the stairs to Cascade Ponds. This meant we got to enjoy all the downhill sections on our way back to Johnson Lake and it was a lot of fun. 

Relaxing at Johnson Lake after our ride

Girls Weekend in Invermere

We headed straight from Banff to Invermere to spend the weekend and I took the girls back to the Spirit Trail in Fairmont since I'd been so intrigued by the area the weekend before. It was a lot more fun with the girls (my son really doesn't like riding uphill - of which there was plenty) and I feel like I know the area a little bit more now. I'll have to go back next year again before I can offer up a full trail report. And if somebody finds a map of the trails in the Fairmont area - please let me know!!

Fun single track on the Spirit Trail in Fairmont
Twisty flowy riding in Fairmont
Riding the Spirit Trail in the Columbia Valley

Jasper Bike Weekend

Our weekend to Jasper was a last minute trip that just came together for us towards the beginning of the month and we were thrilled to get to do some biking in this area. The favourite trail hands down was the Pyramid Lake Trail which lost 100+ metres of height gain from the lake back to town. We rode it one way with our son (who thought it was the best trail ever) and almost drove back up for a second ride down. (Yay Grandma who offered us her shuttle services this weekend.)

Autumn Riding in Jasper on the Pyramid Lake Trail

I also got out for a 15+ km bike ride with my husband while Grandma stayed back at our cabin with Noah for some late afternoon rest time. And it was glorious!! We looped the whole Jasper townsite area on the easy/intermediate trail system and I got to finally ride the Big Horn Alley Trail I'd wanted to do last year. It was super fun downhill riding on a twisty flowy trail.

Last photo on my old bike in Jasper (where I bought my new bike)

Biking around Calgary

We also did a lot of biking around Calgary and the photos below are my favourite ones from our rides.

Biking around Bowmont Park after school
Evening riding on the Paskapoo Slopes
Afternoon Biking on Nose Hill
First time biking my favourite trail on Nose Hill (thanks for the pick up at the bottom Daddy!)

I hope you have enjoyed September. I still have one final story to share from our annual fall backpacking trip. Watch for that one!


  1. This bike looks super cool I want one for myself.I hope your daughter finds it helpful …she seems to be enjoying herself a great deal that’s for sure

  2. We believe in the amazing freedom and confidence a run bike gives kids.Great article. Might be worth mentioning that even before the camping gear has been strapped aboard, using a trail-a-bike or similar will have a significant adverse effect on the handling of your bike. Can make off-road riding very 'interesting' but climbing will give you Quads Of Steel :-)