The start (and finish) of our 100 mile (160KM) course is in downtown Kingston at the historic Woolen Mill, located at 4 Cataraqui St. situated along the Cataraqui River, where it meets Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River. There are 3 route options to choose from, plenty of parking available, and a place to change.
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Route Option 1: The Big Loop
Kingston through the Thousand Islands to Brockville and back to Kingston
(Total distance: 160km)
Section 1: The Wake Up!
Kingston to Gananoque (35KM)
Under a police escort through the downtown section of Kingston, riders will head east up Fort Henry Hill, past the Kingston Canadian Forces Base. This section has a few climbs and should give your heart rate a wake up for the morning. (OK, so it is Eastern Ontario we are talking about –not the Rocky Mountains, but it’s what we’ve got). Riders will travel east along Hwy 2 beside the St. Lawrence River into the small town of Gananoque for the first pit stop of coffee, fruit, and other refreshments.
Section 2: The View.
Gananoque to Brockville, via The Parkway (45KM)
We will pick up additional riders here doing the Gan to Gan loop. From Gananoque we will enter the newly paved and dedicated trails of the beautiful Thousand Islands Parkway. This could be the most beautiful ride in Ontario on Sunday morning in the fall. You will have a constant view of the St. Lawrence River over your right shoulder. The parkway is quite flat, and we will follow it all the way to the end, where it finishes at the outskirts of Brockville. We will have our second pit stop 5KMs after we cross over the 401.
Section 3: Peaceful Country
Brockville to Gananoque (45KM)
Riders will cross over a bridge over the 401 and ride onto our beautiful network of secondary country roads. Kingston is blessed with some of the best (read: quiet and fairly smooth) paved roads in the country. They are cycle friendly! Cows, llamas, chickens and a few sleepy old towns that have not changed in 100 years. Relax, draft off a friend or break some wind (you know what we mean!). We will see very little traffic on this section as we ride back to Gananoque for our third pit stop.
Section 4: Take Me Home
Gananoque to Kingston (35 KM)
If you’ve had enough cycling for one day, no problem! We can pick up your ride and take you back to the finish line party. Otherwise, grab your energy bar and refill your water bottle for the last leg of the ride-back into Kingston. Riders will continue along Hwy 2 back into Kingston and the Woolen Mill finish area. You will follow the same track as Section 1, but it will seem very different, and it will feel a bit longer too. There will be nothing better than the view coming back into Kingston from Fort Henry hill. It literally is all downhill from here. You did it! Now come and celebrate with a beverage, food, and music.
Route Option 2: Gananoque to Kingston
Not ready for the full loop? Well…you have the option of trying this loop which includes the “The View”, “The Peaceful Country and Take me Home” sections of the big loop. Riders will join the Big Loop Riders when they arrive in Gananoque and take in the majority of the Big Loop Ride. It’s the perfect distance to get ready for doing the Full Gran Fondo in the future.
Saddle Up Time
For those riding the Gan-to-Kingston loop we will transport you and your bike to the Gan Chev Dealership for the start of your ride. You will start with the 90KM loop riders at approximately 8AM when the main group comes through from Kingston. Please be ready to go by 7:45AM. To have you and your bike transported to Gan we require you to have your bike loaded in our vehicles that will be located in the Woolen Mill parking lot outside of Focus Fitness. You must have your bike loaded in the trailer by 6:30AM. You must be in the vehicle pulling the trailer by 6:45AM. There is free coffee on the trip to Gan!
Route Option 3: Gananoque to Gananoque
This ride is our 90 km route that takes in ” The View” ( section 2 of the big loop) and the ” The Peaceful Country” ( section 3 of the big Loop). Riders will join the Big Loop riders when they arrive in Gan. Take in the best of the Gran Fondo with this loop.
Saddle Up Time and Transportation
For those riding the 90KM Gan-to-Gan course we suggest you drive your own vehicle to Gananoque and park at the Gan Chev Dealership. This ride will start at approximately 8AM when the main group comes through from Kingston. You will be alerted when the lead vehicle comes through. The Gan-to-Gan ride finishes at the dealership, where you can grab some refreshments and head back to the Woolen Mill for great post-race food and refreshments. Drive back along Hwy 2 and honk your horns in support of the riders completing The Big Loop. That will be you next year!