In preparing to say goodbye to Toronto, I've been trying to squeeze in some bike rides that I've always enjoyed in this city. Frequently thinking things like "this might be the last time I ever cross over the Humber bridge."
These two pictures are from the Humber River biking trail. Toronto has two river valley biking trails - the Humber in the west, and the Don in the east, and I've ridden the Don Valley river trail far more often than the Humber. I've always lived a bit closer to the Don than the Humber, and the Don trail has the advantage of three half decent hills up at the north end that you can use for hill-training. But, the Humber is definitely more picturesque. I remember going through the Humber once on my Kona mountain bike on a thin layer of crusty snow - nice quiet winter morning, the trail mostly deserted, the snow breaking under my tires. One of those random rides that you take which turn into a lasting memory.
And this is the beaches in Toronto's east end. From my place (this was Monday? Tuesday?) I rode east on Queen Street to the beaches area, turned south and was quickly on the Martin Goodman trail, which is a long biking trail along Toronto's lakeshore which takes you completely across Toronto from east to west (with only maybe 3 or 4 km of street riding involved). When I did my undergrad at U of T, a small-town boy in the big city, I grew to hate Toronto. And for the first few years I was back (after going abroad and teaching ESL for a few years) I hated it even more. And then I bought a bicycle and started exploring areas like the Humber trail and the Don trail and the Martin Goodman trail, and my bike opened up Toronto's green areas to me, and I relaxed here for the first time.
So here's to biking in Toronto. Here's to your bike opening up the green areas of your city. Here's to Toronto the good - the places where you can ride your bike.