Saturday, March 21, 2009

First ride of Spring 2009 - across the Ironworkers' Memorial Bridge to Lonsdale Quay

Today being the first full day of Spring 2009 I got on the bike and headed for the Ironworker's Memorial 2nd Narrows Bridge in East Vancouver - I follow the Adanac bike route east from downtown to its junction with Lakewood where I turn left and follow it to its ends at Wall Street where it joins the Portside route - follow this to New Brighton Park on the harbour where this image is taken.

This Park has been greatly improved in conjunction with the Metro Port Vancouver - it has a large swimming pool in the summer and now a great little walking path providing some great views of both downtown and across Burrard Inlet to the North Shore Mountains - my maternal grandparents would often take me and my brother to this park in the summer time as it was only a short distance from their home.

There are two ways to access the bridge coming from the west - stay on Portside and climb up and over the highway and then take the Cassiar route onto the bridge or the way that I went - I continue under the bridge and onto the Burnaby Heights trail - this is part of the Trans-Canada trail and was inaccessible until a couple of year ago because it was missing a 25 foot bridge over a gulley under the bridge.

After riding under the bridge I then follow a trail that will take me up to Boundary Road and then onto the bridge - doing the bridge from south to north has a much less steep ride across the bridge - this shot provides a look at the bridge and the snowy Lions in the distance.

Riding across the bridge on the east sidewalk I stop to take this image of the the old bridge - now used by CN to access their North Van rail yards - and Mt Seymour in the distance.
After coming off the bridge I head for the lower level road which has a dedicated bike lane and take it into Lonsdale Quay.

There is lots of development taking place at the Quay as the old ship yards adjacent to the Quay are being redeveloped.

While not the clearest photos because of the sun's position and the filtered sun you do get a view of the Vancouver Skyline from the promenade at the Quay.

I stop here for lunch and then get on Seabus for the 10 minute trip across the harbour to Waterfront station - there was an older gentleman and his granddaughter who wanted to get to Stanley Park from the terminal so I rode with them to the seawall and then headed for a shower and steam at my gym.
The expensive, over budget and way late addition to the Trade and Convention center is almost complete - expected to open some time next month - here is a view from the what will be an extension of Cordova Street.

On last view of the convention center.

In all a 20km ride with some good climbing and a good workout - after that workout I am ready for a pizza or spaghetti feast tonight.



Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A ride to Trout Lake and the Central Valley Greenway

The new Y Nanook Center and first view of Trout Lake.

Dennis at south end of Trout Lake.

Skytrain and a view of downtown Vancouver from the Grandview Cut and finally a city view from Clarke and Great Northern Way - notice the fresh snow on the North Shore Mountains

HAPPY ST PATRICK'S DAY TO ONE AND ALL - as one who has Irish heritage in my maternal family roots this was always a big day in the
household when I was growing up.

Today as the weather started to clear I decided to go for a bike ride out to Trout Lake in East Vancouver - using a number of the city's bike ways I passed the site of the new YMCA Nanook Early Child Care center being completed at 10th and Clark in Vancouver - it will officially be named the Bob and Kay Ackles YMCA Nanook Center - Bobby was instrumental in raising the 3+ Million $$ needed for the project.

I then continued east along the 10th Avenue Bike Way until it met with the Mosaic route which I followed into Trout Lake.

One reason why I am putting my own picture in many of these posts is to dispell any rumors that I sit at home and surf the net all day.

Leaving Trout Lake I follow the BC Parkway and the nearly completed new section of the Central Valley Greenway.

The CVG is a low level route that will take one from downtown Vancouver, through Burnaby and into Sapperton in New West.

The City has basically widen the sidewalk on Great Northern Way until you get to Prince Edward then turns down to 1st Avenue - you will eventually cross Main Street at 1st Ave and then proceed onto the existing Seaside route. all tha tis needed is a light at Main Street - the remainder of the route is finished.

From there it home following the Seaside route til Drake and the short climb to Hornby and home.



Sunday, March 15, 2009

St Patrick's Day Parade - Vancouver March 15, 2009

Under cold and wet - some rain and snow I headed down to Burrard and Georgia to take in this year's Parade - despite the weather the turnout was quite good. The Parade traditionally starts off with the Vancouver Police Motorcycle drill team who performed just up Georgia from this shot.

One of the many marching bands that took part in this year's parade - ah the sweet music of the bagpipes. The Parade was moved to Georgia Street this year because of the reconstruction taking place on Granville St.

The great Mayor of Vancouver - Gregor Robinson - there won't be a Parade next year as it will conflict with the Para - Olympics Games.

One of the themes of this year's Parade seems to be vintage cars - there were lots of them in the Parade - the weather is continuing to worsen and I am getting cold and wet.

Another marching band.

There were many small informal band groups marching along the street.

Many other groups were dressed in Celtic traditional grab.

Knight of the Round table.

Irish Wolf hounds - what great looking beasts.

A pot of gold for everyone.

A group of mascots - by now I am ready to leave - many other are doing the same as the snow starts to intensify.

Another vintage vehicle.

This VW bug is dressed up for the occasion - often see it parked on Robson St - always attracts a lot of interest.

A float with an display of Irish or more correctly Celtic dancers.

By now I am too cold and wet to stay and watch the conclusion of the Parade so head for the warm confines of Pacific Center.

This year's Celtic village is set up on the north lawn of the Art Gallery on Georgia St - it is soggy and muddy - don't think that many of the display will do much business today.

Meanwhile in Pacific Center - the place is packed - many have sought refuge from the elements.

More later