Calabogie Cruise (129km/80km)
Location: Calabogie, Greater Madawaska, Ontario
Distance: 129.1km (79.5 miles) / 79.8km (49.6 miles)
Suggested Tire Width: 38-40mm or greater
Amenities: The starting point in the town of Calabogie includes a convenience store, several restaurants, and a brewery. The town of Cobden, the approximate halfway point of the 128km option, includes a couple of convenience stores, a brewpub and burger/chip stand. The village of Douglas, about 17.5km from Cobden on the 128km route, has a small general store. Otherwise, riders on the 79.8km version of the loop shouldn't expect any amenities on-route.
Estimated Gravel Time: 80%-90%
Parking: Public parking at boat launch/visitor centre (public toilets available)
This ~130k route takes advantage of the ample single lane gravel that wind its way through the hills north of Calabogie, before descending into the flat gravel/paved farm roads that are a regular feature of the Ottawa Valley (including some surprise unmaintained!) The route also gives riders the option of shortening the overall distance to ~80k and staying within the hills surrounding Calabogie.
Starting from the public visitors parking in Calabogie and riding counterclockwise, riders are almost immediately greeted with a few kilometres of rowdy unmaintained. Riders have the option of missing this section and riding directly north from the parking lot (and effectively turning the route into a lollipop), but give the unmaintained a shot - it’s imminently rideable.
After the unmaintained section, the route heads north, zigzagging up a mix of two lane and single lane gravel roads, before hitting a brief bit of quiet pavement (Pucker St).
Turn left off of Pucker, and descend into the Ottawa Valley on South McNaughton Rd, Here, riders are greeted with a mix of flat and quiet gravel and pavement all the way to the town of Cobden and the Whitewater Brewpub, the approximate halfway point of the route,
Instead of riding to Cobden, riders also have the option of continuing on South McNaughton to Stone Rd, where riders can rejoin the route back to Calabogie and effectively shortening the route to ~80k
After Cobden, backtrack for a few kilometres before continuing on Patterson Rd., on a mix of gravel and quiet pavement, to the village of Douglas, which has a small convenience store.
Continuing south, riders start climbing back up the hills surrounding Calabogie, where abundant single lane gravel and easy to navigate unmaintained await, including a righteous descent on Gorra Hill Rd.
Continue on a bit more pavement and gravel before hitting the K&P Trail, and descending all the way back to Calabogie (and the Calabogie Brewing Company).