Another set of wheels

By | March 22, 2010

I haven’t had a lot of luck getting my husband on his bike. My enthusiasm is not catching. I guess part of that is I got a brand new bike, and he didn’t. He’s got his bike from high school, and I’m not telling you how long ago that was. It’s in good shape overall – a little bit of rust, a lot of grime, but under that – it’s fine.

So I’m fixing it up for him – getting in tip top condition again. Except, I don’t know squat about fixing bikes. I’ve got a couple of books from the library (more coming in today) and a general idea of what needs to be done. Last night my brother helped me to fix the back brakes, which involved using the front brakes for parts. Now I’ve got to replace the front brakes entirely. It needs a thorough cleaning, and everything needs a good lube, and I think that the back wheel is a little warped – not much, but it should probably get some attention. The derailleurs need tweaking (so do mine for that matter) and that should just about do it.

So with that in mind, another trip to the bike store – with a stop at the library on the way back. New brakes, chain lube, spoke wrench. Maybe some new tires, but that can probably wait. And a back rack.

Speaking of back racks… made it out to Canadian Tire yesterday for a couple of odds and ends, and found myself in the bike section. Picked up a back rack and handle grips (Supercycle brand, on sale) – only to find out when we got home that the rack doesn’t work. This particular rack mounts to the brake assembly, and therefore doesn’t work with V-brakes. Would not have even occurred to me that you would mount a rack to your brakes. Of all the silly things…

Unrelated: I mentioned that I’d been wanting to go to Humber Bay Park, and Michael was kind enough to map me a route. As appreciative as I am, it was to the wrong park, and I thought I’d share the map to the correct park.


Excuse the fuzziness. So you can see now the  obstacles that stand between me and my favourite local park. 1) Mimico Creek 2) The Gardiner 3) the railway tracks. And the route that has me nervous: Queensway to Park Lawn. This is the direct route – it makes sense in terms of distance and terrain. There are ways to avoid the Queensway: one involves going North first to cross the creek and then taking Park Lawn all the way down. Another way would be to take Royal York South and coming back along the Lakeshore. Both these routes add considerable distance. There’s a footbridge in Woodford Park (see top star) that would take me across the ravine, but the hill to get down to the park is such a steep incline that I am not even going to consider it an option.

So, I’m going to suck it up and try the direct route, at least once. And if I make it, I will reward myself with a stop at the Christie factory outlet store, which is on the route.

And if you haven’t been, you should visit Humber Bay Park. Between the model boat pond, the butterfly habitat, and the swans and other waterfowl – it really is a beautiful place to visit. I’m lucky to live so close.


Joe T. on March 22, 2010 at 8:53 am.

For bike DIY goodness, check out BikePirates (Bloor & Landsdowne), or the soon opening BikeSauce (in Leslieville).

They won’t fix your bike for you, but will teach you how to do it. :) Both run by great people!

Todd Tyrtle on March 22, 2010 at 8:55 am.

You might also find that Bike Pirates and/or the Community Bike Network could be quite helpful in terms of learning how to do the parts of your repair project that are new to you.

cFletch on March 22, 2010 at 9:51 am.

I had thought about taking a course with CBN – but finding the time is tough – you know, 3 kids and all. If only they would come to me… :)

duncan on March 22, 2010 at 2:07 pm.

Hello Claire. Here’s a route that may work for you:

I’m not 100% sure of the beginning. Is that a High School on Royal York? From above it appears as though you could cut through the parking lot and take a path to Berry. From Berry you head along to Stephen and from there enter the Humber Park, this path is a little bumpy, but will take you under the Queensway and Gardiner and connects you with the Martin Goodman Trail.

michael holloway on March 22, 2010 at 6:27 pm.

Hey Clair, “MikeG” added a route idea at the Route Mapping Wiki this morning:

While I was checking out MikeG’s suggestion I saw Duncan’s map, so I posted it.

My original map got you to the trail Duncan and MikeG are pointing to – The Martin Goodman Trail – but your right, above, I didn’t know that. In fact, I didn’t know where the park was when I made the map! :)

michael holloway on March 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm.

Ironically, EARY this morning I posted this in comments at the Route Mapping Wiki (

“Your welcome Todd, and I look forward to your map from Dufferin/Steeles.
My experience are routes in this box: Keele, Eglington, Victoria Park – down to the lake. Out side of that I need help! I can’t see myself posting routes that I haven’t ridden.
I made an exception the other day and posted a map, Royal York Road and Bloor to Humber Bay Park. I’m hoping for lots of feed back on that one – I’m half expecting something like, ‘Are you crazy!!? You cant take…’ :)
We will see.

After all the activity today on this very thing it was quite prophetic.

cFletch on March 22, 2010 at 7:06 pm.

It’s hard to map a route you haven’t seen – take Duncan’s route. Would be nice – except for the ravine crossing. The thing that Google maps doesn’t show you is the set of stairs that you have to go down – about 25 steps. It’s hard to get across the ravine here. I’ve either got to go North to Glenroy, or South to the Queensway. And I never would have called you crazy. :)

duncan on March 22, 2010 at 8:48 pm.

Darn! I thought I’d found some hidden back route. That’s a really tricky ravine, I wouldn’t have even know about it if it weren’t for this search… so this has benefited me so far. Hah. Thanks.

michael holloway on March 23, 2010 at 6:45 am.

You’re too close to the Lake – ‘You can’t get there from here’!

There *must* be a way to get to the Martin Goodman trail from half way down Royal York!

I’m going to try again. I’m thinking the industrial service roads next to the Gardiner.

I’m wondering what to do with these three maps that don’t work; delete? re-label? Post a on a page titled, “Toronto Biking Committee” – so they’re apt to see it?

Or maybe… Write a blog post about how the highways separate the community from all the wonderful park infrastructure we’ve created on one of the largest bodies of water on the planet..

cFletch on March 23, 2010 at 10:14 am.

I had a thought yesterday… instead of fixating on the places I used to go – I should just find new places to visit. Royal York has a bike lane right down to the lake. There are LOTS of parks along the lake.
I’m waiting for my copy of the Toronto Bike map to come in the mail. I think I’ll just put it up on the wall, and start picking parks to try and tracing out my routes.
After all – this is an opportunity for change right? :)

And I would say, delete the maps that don’t work. I will spend the summer trying out new routes for us to map. :)

Joe T. on March 23, 2010 at 10:26 am.

That’s kind of what I do… I get 2 copies of the map – put one up near my desk at work (which inspires me to plot out interesting ways home when I’m tired of looking at a computer), and the other one stays in my pannier all summer so that when I get lost in a ravine (which is part of the fun), I can look up where I am and figure out where to go from there. :)

michael holloway on March 23, 2010 at 3:29 pm.

Thanks Claire, that’s sweet.

And good thinking outside the box there.

Map booo – k? What’s that? :)

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