a guest post: garnish to point rosie

Long time friend Guy Ridler and his girlfriend Ruth Lloyd visited Newfoundland in October and ventured down to the Burin Peninsula, with fatbikes, to ride the Garnish to Point Rosie Trail. I asked them to pen a few words about their experience:

Ruth

It was a 25 kilometre ride through landscapes like I have never seen; from wind-carved trees to rocky headlands over sandy bays populated by perfect Monopoly houses – tidy rectangles with square windows and translucent curtains.
We rode fat bikes – wide, low-pressure tires rolling easily over piles of loose rounded stones and sand.
We stopped to take photos so often we began to realize we would run out of time, were we not to get moving and put the cameras away for a few kilometres. Riding over bridges, up and down headlands, across empty beaches, meeting the occasional four-wheeler or ATV in the unseasonably warm late October sunshine, it was hard to keep the cameras tucked away.
I feel as though I could have done a photo project on just the trees. Such a foreign forest for a British Columbian like myself, the stunted trees no higher than one story of a building appeared to be a garden of sculpted Bonsai fir. Some were silver skeletons, as though they were sandblasted by the harsh Atlantic weather, stripped to their wooden bones of all skin and flesh. All of the trees were bowed away from the weather, clinging to the rocky headlands defiantly, and making the relatively windless and sunny late October day seem all the more miraculous.
Arriving back at our vehicle in the dark, seeing the lights of Garnish across the water, I was cold and tired, sore from nearly 50 km of off-road riding, but I knew it was very much worth the effort.

Guy

I’ve known The Slow Biker for 25 years. Despite the title of his blog, The Slow Biker, he is a very fast biker; he coached the provincial road racing team I was on in the 80’s. We’ve remained friends and I’ve been following his bike adventures through this blog since its inception in 2012. Blog post 12 Aug 2014 was irresistible:

“Drive, don’t run, to Garnish as soon as you can to ride the 24 km (one way) trail to Point Rosie. This gem of a trail should be ridden by every person with a mountain bike in this province and every person who comes to this province for a visit.”

This was the inspiration for myself and my girlfriend Ruth to follow The Slow Biker’s tracks and ride from Garnish to Point Rosie on the Burin Peninsula in October 2014. The varied terrain and the intrigue of the “resettled village” Point Rosie, looked like a great intro to fatbiking in Newfoundland. After some logistical discussions with The Slow Biker, we made a plan to borrow fat bikes and head out to Garnish for a long day trip.

Stats:

  • Depart Garnish 10:56 am.
  • Arrive Point Rosie 2:30 pm.
  • Return Garnish 7:00 pm.
  • Total Distance 48.4 km.
  • Elevation Gain 895 m.

Here’s what we saw:

Leaving Garnish on the first beach section.  The 4-inch tires floated over the loose sand.

Leaving Garnish on the first beach section. The 4-inch tires floated over the loose sand.

Around mid point to Pt Rosie.  One of many bridges along the route.

Around mid point to Point Rosie. One of many bridges along the route.

Pt Rosie.  About a dozen well kept cabins remain as summer homes.

Point Rosie. About a dozen well kept cabins remain as summer homes.

A small replica of the original church in Point Rosie watches over the community.

Wild blueberry’s red fall foliage.

Wild blueberry’s red fall foliage.

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4 thoughts on “a guest post: garnish to point rosie

  1. being from point rosie myself, I don’t think you would like to ride it in the winter. I have a cabin there now but don’t spend much time there in the winter, but we encourage visitors to come and see in the summer, more the merrier, we need more funding from our government to keep places like this going. fundraising is a big ordeal trying to keep a 25 km trail in good shape.

    • I’m with you, Alex – I’d love to see more financial support for trails such as these. The more people outdoors the better, whether you’re on foot, on bike or ATV.

      However, you’re wrong about wanting to ride the trail in the winter. It’s high on my “To Do” list. So if you see somebody out there on a “pedal bike” it might just be me! 🙂

      • go for it, I posted some pictures on facebook last week will give you an idea of the conditions, ive tried twice this winter to get there and check on my cabin, because of the ice we had to remove the ramp from the last bridge and its impossible to cross the river on atv. having said that you could lift a peddle bike upon the bridge and carry on.

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