After noticing that the parking lot at Deer Lake was closed, like so many other places during the pandemic, I, half-joking, suggested that Christian should build a bike canoe trailer. By now you would think, that I would know better than suggesting projects jokingly. However, now a month later it is here, and I must admit I am pretty stocked about it.
Last weekend we took the trailer on its first real test ride - a self propelled canoe trip of False Creek. To the regular self propelled community that might sound rather tame, but when you factor in the three kids it takes it to a new level.
The first hurdle, as always with three young kids, was getting out of the door. Getting ready to head down to the beach can easily take me a couple of hours on a normal day, so you can imagine the time it took to get bikes, snacks, diapers, life jackets, and a canoe ready to go. By the time we were ready it was 1.10pm, which to my credit was only 10 min past our estimate leaving time. We headed down the Ontario bike route, but switch over to Yukon at Hillcrest for a quick visit with our friends Nick and Lena. Yukon turned out okay with a little bit of careful navigation through Lilian To Park and across 2nd Avenue.
Another set of our friends met us at Spyglass dock, where we were planning to launch, to see the spectacle. The seawall was busy, so this turned out to be the trickiest part. Staying out of the way, keeping our distance to everyone, locking up the bike and keeping an eye on the kids was tricky. Our friends tried to help while still keeping their distance, but soon they headed off on their bike ride. We left baby W in the chariot and N just at the top of the dock, while we carried the canoe down - both kids screaming. A well-meaning lady approached N and eventually took her hand, while I was yelling at the top of my lungs for her to step away from the kid. It was stressful, but 10 min later we were in the water away from the crowded seawall.
We met up with some friends on the water and paddled out to the Maritime museum. On the way we enjoyed seeing town from the sea side. We spotted a number of herrings, one catching a fish. At the museum we circled around the dock, while admiring the cool boats. On the way back we stopped in Yaletown to pick up some Clam Chowder. Back at the dock we had an easier time transitioning back to the bikes - I guess even a little practice makes a difference. On the bike back we opted to take the Ontario bike way all the way to avoid the messy crossing with 2nd Avenue under the Cambie bridge. The ride home was smooth, expect for the canoe trailer knot getting pulled through the trailer attachment several times. The knot was a beautifully simple idea, but another solution is in the works.
More trailer details to come...
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East Coast Trail
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Digging a snowcave
Make a kid towing harness