NEWFOUNDLAND

BONNE BAY LOOP

Pedal Magazine - - Test Gear - BY RYAN D. BUTT

Steeped in rich coast his­tory and its share of pris­tine rid­ing, Newfoundland is a won­der to be­hold for cy­clists. The most majestic of these routes is, ar­guably, the Bonne Bay Loop, lo­cated in and around Gros Morne Na­tional Park on the island’s West Coast. Within 75 kilo­me­tres, there are chal­leng­ing ver­ti­cal climbs in­ter­spersed with rolling hills, re­lax­ing flats and breath­tak­ing de­scents through some of the most gor­geous nat­u­ral beauty on earth. One can park a ve­hi­cle on the Nor­ris Point end, then take the BonTours boat across Bonne Bay.

One will land in Woody Point, a small fish­ing vil­lage that has fast be­come an in­te­gral artis­tic hub of the prov­ince. Leav­ing Woody Point, one rolls up, down and around bay-side high­ways, turn­ing in­land where it is not un­com­mon to see moose, foxes or any other na­tive wildlife. Af­ter a sim­ple series of left turns, one will be right back in Nor­ris Point again.

At the end of the loop, one can also add an­other 15 kilo­me­tres and swing by the pic­turesque Lob­ster Cove Head light­house over­look­ing the community of Rocky Har­bour. Once that ad­ven­ture has ended, one can kick back at The Cat Stop pub to en­joy lo­cal brews and tra­di­tional mu­sic.

If one is feel­ing par­tic­u­larly pa­tri­otic this year, head­ing in ei­ther di­rec­tion and then turn­ing around to ride back from where one came from di­als in at a per­fect 150 kilo­me­tres! The rid­ing sea­son in Gros Morne starts with ideal con­di­tions in May, and then con­tin­ues through un­til the snow falls (de­pend­ing on one’s thresh­old for cold).

The of­fi­cial 75-kilo­me­tre Bonne Bay Loop run takes place ev­ery May 24 long week­end, co­in­cid­ing per­fectly with the rev­el­ries at the an­nual Trails, Tales, Tunes mu­sic festival.

Gros Morne is a tiny mi­cro­cosm of Newfoundland cul­ture, with a wide va­ri­ety of au­then­tic ex­pe­ri­ences packed into just a few tiny ad­ja­cent com­mu­ni­ties. For a well-rounded cy­cling ad­ven­ture, the Bonne Bay Loop is one to throw onto the bucket list.

The Bonne Bay Loop is a majestic scenic route in Gros Morne Na­tional Park on Newfoundland’s West Coast.

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